The preacher and the part-time PM By Mariam Mokhtar
Monday, January 06, 2014
From Malaysiakini : Najib Abdul Razak: Entrepreneur. String-puller. Property speculator.
Globe-trotter. Magician and part-time Prime Minister. Being the
Malaysian PM is without doubt, a dream job.
Pampered while crossing the globe in luxury, dining at the finest
restaurants, lounging in the best hotels and bedecking his spouse in the
The nation is on the cusp of another racial and religious conflict, but
Najib is nowhere to be seen, or heard; a testimony to his expertise in
performing the disappearing trick, he is the poor-man’s Tommy Cooper.
Be warned! Competition is fierce for this dream job. Although the job
seems to be up for grabs, every five years, just like a crooked race,
the fix is in and the outsider always seems to win.
Today, when community tensions are simmering, and pro-Umno-Baru NGOs are
threatening Christians, Najib has again failed to censure the
extremists. His head is stuck firmly in the sand, his lips are sealed
together and he is hiding behind the extremist NGOs.
The recent troubles may appear to be a steep escalation in religious
extremism, but they aren’t. The timing of the assault on the Christian
community is critical. The Perak Mufti’s intervention is revealing.
What we see is Umno-Baru’s dirty politics at play. What appears to be a
radical rise in extremism is an illusion being staged by pro-Umno-Baru
NGOs, and given excessive publicity by the mainstream media.
In order to distract the rakyat from the impact of the price hikes, and
deflect criticism about the IGP’s handling of the New Year’s eve
celebrations, Najib is playing a dangerous game and using religion, to
achieve his ends. The protest against the church is part of that plan.
He is prepared to break the country up to serve his own selfish purpose.
To hide the true state of the nation’s finances. To hide his excessive
spending. To conceal the waste approved by his government. To continue
his, and his party’s, grasp on power.
If he had not taken extreme measures, he and the men responsible for
corruption and injustice, would be hauled to justice and punished.
Religion has never stopped anyone from doing evil.
Extremism, in some form or other, has always existed in Malaysia and elsewhere. Najib is taking a massive risk by allowing members of the
public to openly preach hatred and incite violence. He may find that he
will not be able to prevent these extremist ideas from taking a life of
their own and spreading.
What Najib hopes will be a distraction today, may at some point in the
future, rear its ugly head as religious fanaticism, just like the
Taliban. There are already signs of this happening. Tomorrow, it may be
the Malays who are assaulted because they fail to supplicate to
Umno-Baru’s version of Islam.
The lack of a coherent strategy, by the government, to deal with
volatile situations is worrying. This part-time PM would prefer that the
nation accelerates towards disintegration. 'Bloodshed permitted'
If Islam is a religion of peace than what does the Perak mufti Harussani
Zakaria, represent? He said that the people who took part in the
anti-price hikes rally at Dataran Merdeka, on New Year’s eve were
encouraged killing when he said, “In fact, all the protesters should be
arrested for being traitors to the government and accordingly in Islam,
bloodshed is permitted on the bughah (protesters).”
Harussani (left) utters the command to kill, as casually as he
would ask for another round of drinks. Muslims, both in Malaysia and
abroad, are appalled by his suggestion. Harussani seems oblivious to
news that around the world, the victims of jihad are mainly Muslims.
Unlike Harussani, most Muslims want to live in peace.
violence.Najib, his Home Minister and the IGP have all failed to silence this
preacher of hate. The IGP heads another phalanx in the charade of
distraction; but is he too obtuse to understand that policemen and their
families will also be affected by the rise in the cost of living.
On Malaysia Day 2010, Najib expressed his opposition to extremist groups
and individuals and under the entry “Our Fight Against Extremism”, said
in his blog, www.1Malaysia.com.my, “It saddens me that despite living
in an independent multi-cultural nation for over 50 years, there are
still those among us who cannot tolerate, much less accept the benefits
of a (peaceful) society”.
At the 65th United Nations General Assembly in New York, he said that
Malaysia represented a moderate Muslim nation. Harussani has shattered
In an act of provocation, the deputy PM, Muhyiddin Yassin supported moves by Selangor Umno-Baru to protest outside churches.
Clearly, Najib’s deputy is still trying to undermine him - a sign that
Umno-Baru is full of opportunists and that the power-struggle between
the Mahathir and Najib camps, still exists.
If the Muslims in Malaysia would be easily swayed by the word 'Allah' in
the Malay bible, what does it say about their intelligence? Is their
faith skin deep?
If the rate of Malay conversions is high, why are the religious authorities afraid of revealing the figures?
The truth is that the Malays are not easily confused and they are not
under siege, contrary to Umno-Baru’s lies. The Christians have been
using the word Allah for longer than there has been Islam.
Millions of ringgits of taxpayers’ money have been channelled by
Umno-Baru, to extremist NGOs like Perkasa. Umno-Baru and their leaders
threaten our way of life, our liberties and the precious social fabric
which we call Malaysia.
We have a part-time PM, and a former PM sniping from the sidelines,
trying to wrestle control of the rakyat. Malaysians need to wake up and
stop the destructive side of Umno-Baru, before we – Muslims and
non-Muslims – become the losers.
MARIAM MOKHTAR is a defender of the truth, the admiral-general of the
Green Bean Army and president of the Perak Liberation Organisation