Dato' Seri Dr. Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (born January 4, 1953 in Bagan Datoh) is a Malaysian politician and is currently the Minister of Home Affairs] in the Barisan Nasional coalition government of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and the Member of the Parliament of Malaysia for the Bagan Datoh constituency in Perak. Before this, he was the Defence Minister of Malaysia. He is a member of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO).
Early in his political career, Zahid was a Senator and chairman of Bank Simpanan Nasional before becoming the head of UMNO's youth wing. In 1998, Zahid spoke out against Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, calling for an end to cronyism and nepotism in the Malaysian government. Zahid, seen as an ally of deposed Deputy Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim, was subsequently arrested and held in prison under the Internal Security Act. However, in 1999, Zahid was welcomed back into the UMNO fold, stating that Anwar had put him up to raising allegations of cronyism and nepotism and alleging that Anwar had used his position as Finance Minister to direct business opportunities to Zahid.
After the 2004 election, Zahid became a Deputy Minister in the government of Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. While a Deputy Minister, Zahid studied for and was conferred the degree of Doctor of Philosophy from Universiti Putra Malaysia.
After the 2008 election, Zahid became a Minister in the Prime Minister's Department. He was appointed as Minister for Defence in April 2009. Recently, Ahmad Zahid Hamidi was appointed as the Minister of Home Affairs replacing Hishamuddin Hussein. Hishamuddin took Ahmad Zahid Hamidi previous position as the Ministry of Defense.