Hornbill Unleashed

November 2, 2014

Muslims in Sabah, Sarawak will never endorse bible-burning call, Dr M told

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
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A Sabah leader said no Muslim in Sabah or Sarawak would ever endorse the idea that it is “acceptable” to suggest torching Christian scriptures. — Reuters picThe Malay Mail

A Sabah leader said no Muslim in Sabah or Sarawak would ever endorse the idea that it is “acceptable” to suggest torching Christian scriptures.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s claim that Datuk Ibrahim Ali’s call to burn bibles was not seditious does not go down well with Muslims in east Malaysia, a Sabah Umno leader said.

State Legislative Assembly Speaker Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak said no Muslim in Sabah or Sarawak would ever endorse the idea that it is “acceptable” to suggest torching Christian scriptures, regardless whether it is deemed a respectful way of disposing their own holy book, the Al-Quran.

“We should put this issue to sleep instead of continuing to fan the flames. Tun Dr Mahathir should speak out with a voice of liberalism and not with a voice of extremism.

“Telling Malaysians that it is right for Ibrahim Ali to call for the burning of the Bible is not something Muslims in Sabah and Sarawak will endorse.

“Even if the Christians do not protest such statements, Muslims will still feel uncomfortable with something like that,” the veteran Sabah politician wrote yesterday in a blog post titled “Time for Mahathir to be more statesman”.

While Salleh noted that his viewpoint as a Sabahan Muslim may not necessarily be the same as a Muslim from Peninsular Malaysia or every single Muslim in the state, he maintained that “it is something that has to be said”.

Earlier in his blog post, Salleh shot down Dr Mahathir’s argument as invalid, suggesting that the former Umno chairman was missing the context of Ibrahim’s call.

Salleh agreed that old and tattered Al-Qurans that can no longer be read “must be burned” to ensure that it is not disrespectfully treated like trash and thrown into a dustbin, writing: “Burning Qur’ans, in this case, is an act of respect”.

But he contrasted it with burning holy scriptures with the intention to protest against another religion, saying that it would not amount to respecting the other religion – whether it involved Islam or Christianity, or their respective holy scriptures.

“Burning Qur’ans as a mark of protest is not a mark of respect, especially if done by non-Muslims to protest against Islam.

“In this instance we are talking about Muslims burning Bibles to protest Christians using Allah in the Bible.

“This is not meant as a mark of respect like Muslims burning old and tattered Qur’ans,” the Sabah Umno deputy liaison chief wrote.

Yesterday, Perkasa patron Dr Mahathir defended the authorities’ decision not to prosecute Ibrahim for his call last January to burn Malay-language bibles, explaining that Muslims often burned old copies of the Al-Quran as disrespect towards the Muslim holy text was prohibited.

He said the prohibition against such disrespect should also be extended to the holy texts of other religions, saying: “The Muslims, if they have some documents (other holy texts) that they are averse‎ to, they should not throw it around, throw it on the ground or step on it”.

Earlier this month, de facto law minister Nancy Shukri had in a written parliamentary reply to Bagan MP Lim Guan Eng, said that Ibrahim was not charged over his threat because the police had concluded that the latter was merely defending the sanctity of Islam, and had not intended to create religious chaos with his statement.

Nancy had said that the police’s probe had also found that Ibrahim’s statement was directed at individuals who had purportedly distributed bibles containing the word “Allah” to students, including Malays, at the Penang school.

This was roundly criticised by lawmakers and civil groups, and drew outraged response from the Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM).

Nancy later explained that the Attorney-General Chambers had decided not to charge Ibrahim “after considering the outcome” of the police probe, also saying that this was because the context of his speech was in line with the spirit of the Federal Constitution’s Article 11(4).

While Article 11 guarantees the constitutional right of all Malaysians to freely profess and practise their faith, Article 11(4) says that state laws or laws for the federal territories “may control or restrict the propagation of any religious doctrine or belief among persons professing the religion of Islam”.

The Attorney-General’s Chambers finally broke its silence in the matter this week, explaining that Ibrahim was investigated but not charged for his call as the Malay rights group leader did not intend to create religious provocation but had merely sought to defend Islam, also saying that his remarks lacked a “seditious tendency”.

Opposition lawmakers have noted the inconsistency in the explanation, pointing out that the Sedition Act 1948 does not require intent or motive as proof of harm caused by an individual’s remarks.

2 Comments »

  1. Burn all the rottan and people will live in peace

    Comment by tigerykey — November 2, 2014 @ 9:18 PM | Reply

  2. “Muslims in Sabah, Sarawak will never endorse bible-burning call”

    Muslims in Sabah and Sarawak will never endorse bible-burning call before they have the numbers to lord over everyone else. When they have the numbers, Sabah and Sarawak will turn into another usual Islamofascist shit hole.

    Comment by Hornbill Leashed and Gagged — November 2, 2014 @ 12:37 PM | Reply


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