Hornbill Unleashed

January 3, 2014

Sarawak Minister says Putrajaya’s tip-toeing around the Allah issue is just bull

Filed under: Human rights,Politics,religion — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:03 AM
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Sarawak’s Land Development Minister Tan Sri Dr James Masing (pic) today lambasted gutless federal leaders whom he said are tip-toeing around the Allah issue with an unsound policy apparently aiming “to appease everyone”.

“Leaders (in the federal cabinet) must be brave enough to take the bull by the horns and decide once and for all which set of religious laws Malaysians must abide by.

“We must take the bull by the horn and tell the bull who is boss,” Masing, an outspoken and fierce critic of the federal government’s stand on the Allah issue, said when reacting to the Selangor Islamic Religious department (Jais) raid on the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) where 300 copies of the Bible in Bahasa Malaysia and Iban were carted away.

The raid, where 15 Jais personnel and two policemen went to the BSM office in Damansara Kim and demanded to be let in without a search and seizure warrant, is the latest incident to set the mercury rising in the country’s religious thermometer.

Masing is particularly critical of the policy where Christians in the peninsula are banned from using the word Allah in their Bibles and religious publications in line with the Court of Appeal’s ruling last October, but exempted Christians in Sarawak and Sabah from the ban under a 10-point solution agreed to by the Federal Cabinet in 2011.

The Court of Appeal had ruled in favour of the Home Ministry to ban the Catholic church’s weekly publication, Herald, from using the word in its Bahasa Malaysia section.

Legal experts are questioning that exemption, saying the Court of Appeal ruling applied to all Malaysians, including in Sarawak and Sabah where the majority of their people are Bahasa Malaysia-speaking Christians.

“I expected this type of action from the Islamic religious authorities. Though I expected it, it was nevertheless most disappointing in a Malaysia where the constitution says in no uncertain terms freedom of religion exists.

“This raid is a reflection of a policy gone wrong. We cannot have one nation with two sets of religious laws applicable on the same issue. It wouldn’t work. It can’t work. Malaysian leaders must decide once and for all which set of religious laws Malaysians must abide by.

“This way Malaysians will have a clear choice on what to do. The law should be applicable to all, whether they stay in Lubok Antu (in Sarawak), Pulau Penyu (Sabah) or Kuala Perlis.”

Masing said the government’s policy on the Allah issue was not based on principle, but based on appeasement.

This policy of appeasement, Masing added, is the cause of rising religious tension in the country.

He said religious policies should not be decided based on political expediency.

“They must be based on sound religious principles tempered by centuries of divine wisdom.”

Masing reminded the federal leaders that people in Sabah and Sarawak travel.

“They go to the peninsula to work. How is it that they are allowed to use the word in one half of the country and not allowed in the other half?”

Christians make up about 9% of the Malaysian population, or 2.6 million. Almost two-thirds of them are Bumiputera and are largely based in Sabah and Sarawak, where they routinely use Bahasa Malaysia and indigenous languages in their religious practices, including describing God as Allah in their prayers and holy book.

Besides the Bumiputera Christians from East Malaysia, some of whom have moved to the peninsula to live and work, Orang Asli Christians in the peninsula also typically use Bahasa Malaysia in their worship.

He asked why the use of the word is an issue now.

“Why is it a problem now? What makes Muslims in the peninsula have the copyright to the word?”

He asked if the religious freedom enshrined in the Federal Constitution had been dumped for “limited freedom of religion”.

“Do we have religious freedom or is it restricted now?”

Datuk Dr Thomas Tsen, president of the Sabah Council of Churches, said he was shocked and disappointed with the raid.

“This is so shocking and disappointing. We can feel with our Christian brothers and sisters in Selangor.

“We pray that this issue can be resolved as soon as possible, with a peaceful, respectful and fair resolution in Selangor, for the stability and harmonious life together of our beloved one country of Malaysia,” Tsen said.


  1. We will take this show of bravado from Masing positively if he is truly sincere in fighting for our Spiritual survival. But at the same time, we also want him to display the same intensity in fighting for survival of our Physical well being as well which is important for a spiritual survival to be meaningful.

    Showing bravery in facing a far away spiritual enemy is not good enough for us Sarawakians. Show more guts defying taib and cronies in their land grabs and mistreatment of his Dayak brothers and Masing will be an instant real hero of the people.

    Comment by brian — January 4, 2014 @ 12:36 PM | Reply

  2. continue to vote BN, dumbo Dayaks and Ibans.
    having said that, much as i detest white hair, at least he has backbone to tell off the zealots.

    Comment by abb — January 4, 2014 @ 1:02 AM | Reply

    • You’re another one who is conned by Taib’s cheap publicity stunts. In front of us, he pretends to be a hero confronting his Malayan master. Behind our backs, he keeps doing what he has done since day one of taking office: selling us out to his Malayan master.

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 4, 2014 @ 3:56 AM | Reply

    • One more thing. Masing and Taib would not be so bold as to openly lawan taukeh if UMNO was strong. Don’t forget, BN actually lost Malaya in the last election and is being propped up by its fixed deposits of Sarawak and Sabah. Those two rats Masing and Taib know they got their taukeh by the balls, that’s why they can afford to pretend to be heroes. UMNO is wounded bad and lashing out wildly now. I sure hope this is the beginning of its end.

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 4, 2014 @ 5:53 AM | Reply

  3. This is just a Sandiwara to divert away attention on subjects like: POOR education system, Barang Naik, POORER exchange rate against foreign currencies due to weak economy in Bodohland. The similar scenario was in 1969, in order to topple late Tunku, the “M”aster “M”ind of 1969 racial riot finally took over as PM of Bodohland. Similary in Japan, PM Abe had to create an illusion of enemy–China, so to amend Constitution to facilitate Japan to become military superpower house with the direct help of usa. The ultimate aim of Allah case is to create a racial riot, best if possible, so current regime can declare Bodohland is under martial rule, for as long as current problems are solve in later day, for how long? Allah knows.

    Comment by tiuniamah — January 3, 2014 @ 10:06 PM | Reply

    • It must be serious when tiuniamah is so deadly serious and strings together understandable sentences. Ha, ha, ha!

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 4, 2014 @ 4:30 AM | Reply

  4. These useless Christian ministers who dare not speak up for their faith are not only cowards in human eyes but judas iscariots who are scared to lose their positions by selling their souls. All these people will surely meet their fate like judas iscariot, the eternal punishment.

    Comment by Sharpshooter — January 3, 2014 @ 8:06 PM | Reply

  5. Masing, why do you talk so much. Are you willing to pull your PRS out of BN?. If you have the guts, we will really ‘salute’ you. I doubt. Why,? Because you have too much at stakes over the money spinning with Thief CM at the expense of the natives here. What is your ENTULU doing in KL? Going to marry another China doll? Terima butak gaji.. Talk only.. Prove that you mean business. To all non-muslim, wake up and go for CHANGE now. We have been bullied for far too long by BN

    Comment by Angry Bird — January 3, 2014 @ 6:51 PM | Reply

  6. NOTSTUPIDMALAY had rightly commented in the Malaysian Insider column that James Masing had failed to praise PAS and its leaders for being wise and just Muslims. All the BN propaganda against PAS for being extreme and DAP for being chauvanistic had failed completedly and totally.

    Comment by Irene Kana — January 3, 2014 @ 6:41 PM | Reply

    • PAS is like poison toad: deadly to touch. Best to let PAS compete with UMNO in Malaya. Keeps them occupied, in check and over there.

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 4, 2014 @ 5:06 AM | Reply

  7. Masing is intellectually dishonest!

    While it is applauded that he airs his opinions for whats universally right, it is no more honest to silently cower under the pretext that both Islam and Christianity in their sublime truths are not consistant for the arrogance, unjust and totalitarian rule of the Sarawak BN under the madman Taib Mahmud!

    Comment by akai indai — January 3, 2014 @ 4:35 PM | Reply

    • Who is this James Masing? Big title and Senior Minister. Land Development Minister, which land? Lands and Survey Department is under Awang Tengah, SALCRA under Jabu. FELCRA, FELDA, and RISDA under Alexander Nanta Linggi. Big name, title and big title but no job. He is left to bark at the hills – Seperti anjing menyalak bukit.

      Comment by No Double Talk — January 6, 2014 @ 5:28 AM | Reply

  8. Remember the merry- go- round they once did to the Sabah CM post? This is another one, the only difference is its between Malaya, Sabah and Sarawak and the tool and victim this time is ALLAH. They will in good time do what they did in Sabah with this one once they have successfully enforced the ban in Malaya.

    How long do we think they can keep their promises that only in Malaya is ALLAH exclusively theirs but Sabah and Sarawak are welcome to share ALLAH with them?

    Remember, now Sabah CM is exclusively theirs and they will not stop at that!

    Comment by brian — January 3, 2014 @ 3:14 PM | Reply

    • They did it to Sabah a long time ago. Don’t you remember the recent post
      that you commented on? Relevant section reproduced below:

      The key condition for our participation in the formation of Malaysia in 1963 was that Sabah shall continue to have complete freedom of religion. This was agreed to by Malaya, now known as West or Peninsular Malaysia.

      On 27 Sept 1973, ten years and ten days later, the Sabah State Constitution was amended to read: “Islam is the religion of the State; but other religions may be practiced in peace and harmony in any part of the State.”

      That other religions may be practised is a lie indeed. The indigenous Church in Sabah and Malaysia has been persistently and systematically persecuted by both the Federal and State governments over the long years.

      At the end of 1981, eighteen years after the formation of Malaysia, the Alkitab, the Malay language Bible was banned by the Federal government. The ban, remains in force till today although in a restricted form. In Sarawak, the Bup Kudus, the Iban Bible was similarly banned in 2003 though it was subsequently rescinded.

      In 1992, the Enakmen Pentadbiran Undang Undang Islam Sabah or the state enactment for administration of Islam in Sabah was passed. This was supposedly meant for Muslims but in 2003, a state gazette listed 31 words which non-Muslims are prohibited from using; the word ‘Allah’ being one of them. Another word is ‘Injil’ for Gospel. This means that Sidang Injil Borneo Sabah, the indigenous church of Sabah cannot exist as a legal entity any longer simply because of this word in its registered name.

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 3, 2014 @ 4:18 PM | Reply

    • As for Sarawak, they are close but not there yet. Read pages 189-196 of the 2011 book “Domination and Contestation: Muslim Bumiputera Politics in Sarawak”.
      Taib has already betrayed us by putting in place the building blocks for Islam to be the de facto official religion of Sarawak, using state money to fund the implementation of new shariah laws, state Islamic organs, Islamic religious schools, mosques, etc. What he and his gang of traitors (James Masing included) are still waiting for the right time to do are changing the state constitution and passing a religious control enactment like in Sabah. Then Islam being made the official religion of Sarawak will be foisted on Sarawakians as a fait accompli. All the Malayan stooges PBB, SNAP, SUPP, PBDS, PRS and SPDP are/were in on this plot.

      Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 3, 2014 @ 6:11 PM | Reply

  9. Sabah-based Barisan Nasional component party Upko today reminded Putrajaya that the raid by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) at the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) yesterday was against the spirit of the 10-point solution reached between the government and Christian groups.

    Comment by Gerak Khas — January 3, 2014 @ 3:08 PM | Reply

  10. Where are all the other our gutless, spinless native “christian” MPs and leaders from Sarawak and Sabah? Looks like they are in hiding with their tails between their legs or have since sold their souls to the devil. Now these are the traitors, duplicates of Judas.

    Comment by Semalau — January 3, 2014 @ 2:10 PM | Reply

  11. Suggestion……..JJM must now gather all his “merry men” ybs and march to putra jaya to protest, if he is sincere.

    Plan B……………..all Christian ybs must resign from bn or convert to other religion.

    That should do the trick.

    Comment by kocokoco — January 3, 2014 @ 1:30 PM | Reply

  12. The worrying question is ‘ WHAT WILL BE NEXT ? ‘

    Comment by sipaigong — January 3, 2014 @ 12:36 PM | Reply

  13. Right now we seriously need a strong religious leader who can amalgamate all of us to fight this appalling spiraling madness. Bishop Paul Tan seems to be a beacon out there. May Allah guide us to the true path and until then we need to remain calm as any untoward action coming from the Christians would certainly disturb the status quo.

    Comment by Zambo — January 3, 2014 @ 11:45 AM | Reply

  14. Sandiwara show-time again. It is the UMNO regime that sends in their clowns (JAIS) to add “salt and pepper” to the Allah issue. Seizing the bibles is now another new sideshow. The Allah controversy is UMNO’s means to distract and divert the Malays’ attention away from price hikes and rising cost of living. Price hikes is beginning to affect the Malays to the core and UMNO must find desperate means to solve their own existential theat. Without the Malays behind them, they are as good as dead dogs. The convenient scapegoats that comes in handy for their power-play are the Christians.

    Comment by nickkraemr — January 3, 2014 @ 11:28 AM | Reply

  15. One thing leads to another .. endless possibilities: God send His son Jesus to solve the problem … all the Mooslims become Christians

    Comment by tigerykey — January 3, 2014 @ 9:45 AM | Reply

  16. That the problem with us Christians just to keep on praying hoping a solution would be found. Hands that work is better than the lips that murmur. We have Christians leaders behaving like pussy cats hiding in the closet of power. They need to come out to voice their opinions. In Philippine before the Haiyan strike many wished to stay put to take care of their properties and convinced that divine would protect them through their prayers. In end six over thousand died and many went missing. That the power of praying. I have just watch Aljazeera today. Look the carnages in Iraq,Syria Lebanon and Egypt. The sectarians conflicts can never see the peaceful solutions. The religious divide cannot find a common ground to seek peaceful solution even of the SAME faith. What to say conflicts between 2 different faiths and ideologies that is engulfing Malaysian. Man ! this is just idiotic. Simply cannot see the rationality behind such kelapa sakit. Memang kepala sakit ! Panadol tak bolih mengubat kepala pening ini !

    Comment by kira commonsense — January 3, 2014 @ 9:43 AM | Reply

  17. Keep supporting BN. We will get more Bullshit Nonsense.

    Comment by You asked for it. — January 3, 2014 @ 9:11 AM | Reply

  18. Apart from him speaking, where are the other Christian leaders? Where is that so-called staunch Christian Jala? If such incident happen here, I hope church leaders will stand their ground and kick Jais out of their office because they have no jurisdiction over them. Looks like Najib is trying to compete with North Korea in the way he manage the country.

    Comment by apai — January 3, 2014 @ 8:54 AM | Reply

  19. Ho, ho, ho! A Christian Iban zero pretending to be a hero. Good time to be paying lip service to religious freedom, you traitor to Sarawak.

    Comment by Scaredy Cat — January 3, 2014 @ 7:06 AM | Reply

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