Monday, February 22, 2016

BARU BIAN: CM, REMIND THE EDUCATION MINISTER HE OWES CHRISTIANS AN APOLOGY


PRESS STATEMENT
22 FEBRUARY 2016

I wish to remind the Chief Minister that the Education Minister Mahdzir Khalid owes Christians an apology for his insensitive and unfounded remarks in August last year which deeply offended and insulted Christians in Malaysia. To refresh the CM’s memory, the Education Minister said, “The Jews and the Christians have pledged that as long as there is the moon and the stars, as long as the end of the world is not here yet, they will decide that Muhammad's followers will be confused and split among themselves. This is the pledge of the Jews and Christians.” He went on to say: "What is their agenda? Their agenda is to see Malaysia no longer as an Islamic country," and "They want to destroy our country and, to destroy it, they will ensure the Malays are split until they have no political power in their own country.”

It is unbelievable that this is the man who is responsible for the education policies of this country. In his hateful and contemptuous remarks at an UMNO gathering, he had clearly shown his prejudice against Christians. Archbishop Bolly Lapok’s call for an apology from him and a similar call from the Council of Churches Malaysia (CCM) were arrogantly ignored.

The Chief Minister claims to be the champion of all religious groups in Sarawak, including Christians. He has pledged to keep extremists out of Sarawak. I want him to explain why this religious bigot is welcomed into Sarawak when the government bans Opposition leaders for no good reason. As pointed out by Archbishop Bolly Lapok, 70% of Sarawakians are non-Muslim and 60% of the Christians in Malaysia reside in Sabah and Sarawak. In fact, almost 45% of Sarawakians are Christians and most have not forgotten the Education Minister’s irresponsible and shocking remarks.

Chief Minister, please live up to your words and tell the Education Minister that he is an extremist religious bigot whose words have hurt the Christians of this country. Tell him that his ignorant and irresponsible words were uttered to do exactly what he accuses Christians (and Jews) of doing – dividing the people of this country. If you are unable to extract an apology from him, then Sarawakians will be left to judge for themselves whether you are a man of your word or merely one of ‘them’ – the UMNO type who preach the 1Malaysia slogan but fail miserably in practising it.

Baru Bian
Chairman
PKR Sarawak

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