14 DECEMBER 2015
I am outraged that UiTM has had the gall to hold another anti-Christian seminar after the outcry over the one held last year. Does the corporate communications chief Siti Najah Raihan Sakrani think that exempting non-Muslims from the programme makes it acceptable for UiTM to hold the course? Would it be equally acceptable for a Christians-only seminar to be held on the same campus on a similar topic with a Christian policeman as a speaker? We know that the Muslim extremists would be all up in arms and the policeman would be in big trouble. What appalls me even more is that instead of warning them against holding it, the police sent a speaker to this seminar. To top it off, the Malacca chief police officer, who is a non-Muslim, said matter-of-factly that the aim of the seminar was to strengthen the ‘akidah’ of Muslim students.
What does the police force have to do with strengthening the ‘akidah’ of Muslims? They are supposed to keep law and order, not dabble in religious instruction. The fact that they think it is acceptable to hold this seminar and to even send an officer to speak should give us loud warning bells – what sort of people do we have in the police force? Are they able to think intelligently about what is acceptable and what is not? Why did the AG not pursue the matter last year? It was reported then that speakers at that talk claimed Christians were betraying God unless they converted to Islam and called the New Testament gospels fake as Jesus Christ was not divine. This is clearly blasphemous against Christians and the AG had no reason to stop the investigations.
No wonder UiTM is not bothered about all the police reports made against it last year. No wonder they continue to hold these seminars with impunity. The police seem to be helping them in this anti-Christian crusade. We only know of these two seminars – how many have actually been held? Can the corporate communications chief tell us whether this seminar is now part of the syllabus of UiTM for Muslims? Is it being held in Sarawak? UiTM is an institute of higher learning. It is not a religious school and should never be used for this sort of programmes. In fact, these sorts of programmes should never be held anywhere. How does disparaging another religion strengthen one’s own faith? This is the sort of thing that divides a nation, not the use of English as another medium of instruction or an official language as feared by the likes of Rais Yatim. We might as well stop the pretence now and throw the 1Malaysia lie into the bin.
Programmes like this whip up feelings of insecurity and fear in Muslim youths by demonising Christianity. What started as UMNO using Christianity as the bogeyman to divide and rule the people is leading to the radicalisation of Islam in this country, and the consequences will be catastrophic. The moderate Islamic country that Najib portrays to the world is long dead. Last month, the Malay Mail reported that in a study of Muslims' support for ISIS, Malaysia tied for second place with Senegal among 11 nations with significant Muslim populations polled, and more than 1 in 10 people hold favourable views of ISIS. It was reported on 12 December 2015 on Al Jazeera that based on police intelligence estimates, at least 50,000 Malaysians support the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), according to Transport Minister Liow Tiong Lai.
Malaysians should be very frightened about what is going on in this country. Moderate Muslims must speak up and support those like the G25 who are trying to bring some rationality back to the country’s leadership. The police and AG must investigate this shameful incident. Speaking as a Sarawakian, I know for certain that if Malaya in 1962 was like the current situation, our forefathers would not even have entertained the idea of having anything to do with the Federation of Malaysia.
N70 Ba’ Kelalan