Hornbill Unleashed

November 1, 2014

Again, Putrajaya shows its bark is worse than its bite

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
Tags: , , , ,

Before the issue of the seized Malay and Iban-language bibles is resolved, the Customs Department confiscated some 300 Christian CDs and books containing the word Allah yesterday. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, October 31, 2014.THE MALAYSIAN INSIDER

Before the issue of the seized Malay and Iban-language bibles is resolved, the Customs Department confiscated some 300 Christian CDs and books containing the word Allah yesterday.

In most countries, civil servants who do not obey cabinet directives are disciplined. But in Malaysia, cabinet ministers have to appeal or cajole civil servants to follow government directives or the law.

The latest is the Royal Malaysian Customs Department’s move to seize some 300 Christian CDs and books containing the word Allah from Sabahan pastor Maklin Masiau in klia2 last week.

Masiau’s case is not the first, and is most likely not the last despite assurances from Putrajaya that it respects the religious rights of all Malaysians under the Federal Constitution.

But why should ordinary Malaysians be surprised at this state of affairs when the authorities take action despite government policy and law? Perhaps because the Prime Minister and the cabinet have sent mixed signals on their 10-point resolution since day one.

Just this year, the Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (Jais) seized Malay and Iban-language bibles from the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) office in Petaling Jaya.

The case has yet to be resolved, just as Sarawakian Jill Ireland’s attempts to get back her Christian CDs despite a court order in her favour.

When Jais seized the bibles from BSM, Putrajaya skirted the issue by saying that it was a Selangor government matter.

Taking the easy way, the Najib government missed an opportunity to send a signal to all civil servants that the 10-point resolution was cast in stone. And not something used for its convenience.

So now you have civil servants who believe they are free to interpret Cabinet decisions.

And let us be clear about this, the Royal Malaysian Customs Department is not the only culprit.

After all, no less than the Inspector-General of Police has also refused to follow a High Court ruling to retrieve a child snatched away from the mother in a custodial dispute.

Where does that leave Malaysians? A government that appeals for support and votes during elections with promises of making it a better nation but with policies ignored by the civil service.

The question now is, who is really running Malaysia? And for whom? Is everyone equal before the law or is that all just talk?

At the very least, we know know that Putrajaya’s bark is worse than its bite when it comes to ensuring that everyone, including the minorities, can practise their faith in peace and harmony in Malaysia.

1 Comment »

  1. Where is that stupid de facto law minster from Sarawak ?

    Comment by Richard Lee — November 1, 2014 @ 9:57 PM | Reply


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