Attorney General Gani Patail was severely criticised by Sarawak’s politicians from both BN and the opposition for deciding not to take legal action against Perkasa chief Ibrahim Ali, on his call to burn Malay language Bibles.
While a number of opposition politicians called for the sacking of the Ghani, who is a Sabahan, BN politicians said the AG’s decision seemed to contradict the government’s own principle as a nation that practises moderation.
Sarawak DAP Youth Chief Wong King Wei said that Ghani should be sacked for his refusal to take action against Ibrahim Ali. “I was really shocked with his decision,” added the lawyer and Padungan Assemblyperson.
Sarawak PKR Chief Baru Bian (right) also called on the government to sack Gani for his lack of courage over the Perkasa chief’s Bible-burning remark.
“Gani is supposed to look after the rights and religious freedom of all Malaysians. What is wrong, is wrong,” he said, adding that that Ibrahim’s remark was certainly seditious.
“I believe Ibrahim’s remark will open the floodgates for others to act like him,” said the lawyer and Ba’Kelalan assemblyperson.
Baru’s colleague See Chee How, a lawyer and Batu Lintang assemblyman said that Gani should definitely be sacked as his non-action against Ibrahim is worrying many peace-loving Malaysians especially Sarawakians.
“The longer he stays as AG the more we are worried as his decisions often contradict with the government’s policy of moderation,” said Sarawak PKR vice-chairperson.
Another opposition leader, Sarawak DAP chairperson Chong Chieng Jen, said that the non-action by the AG against Ibrahim reflected Umno’s influence.
“Ibrahim Ali is backed by Umno,” added Chong, the Bandar Kuching parliamentarian.
Meanwhile, Parti Rakyat Sarawak president and Senior Minister James Masing (left) said that the AG’s decision seemed to indicate anyone could say anything seditious in the defence of Islam.
“Are you telling me that in defending the sanctity of Islam, anything goes?
“This is not the voice of moderation as envisioned by Malaysia, as stated by Prime Minister (Najib Abdul Razak) in his recent speech at the United Nations,” he said to The Borneo Post.
The land development minister said: “I am wondering where Malaysia is heading to with this kind of statement coming from the government.
“We cannot allow this (acceptance of extremism) to happen in our country. Malaysia has been so peaceful all these years, please don’t encourage extremism,” he said.
Assistant Minister Jerip Susil, a leader of the United People’s Party accused Ibrahim Ali of tainting the very meaning of religious freedom in the country, especially in Sarawak.
“Ibrahim’s remark is very unhealthy for a multi-religious society like Malaysia,” he said, expressing regret over the AG’s decision not to take legal action against him.