Malaysian churches have called on Gerakan deputy Youth chief Andy Yong to rescind his statement regarding “Christian involvement” in the Bersih 5 rally.
In a statement today, Council of Churches of Malaysia general secretary Hermen Shastri questioned Yong’s intent in singling out the Christian community with his “obtuse, incendiary and unsubstantiated views” which had caused “great hurt” to Christians in the country.
“At best his statement is a mocking denial of the supposedly high ideals of human rights his party espouses and at worst his comment is a deliberate attempt at casting aspersions on the good and sincere intentions of Christians to lend their voice to issues of the day.”
Hermen said Yong had done his party a disservice as Gerakan’s political ideology held that it was committed to a more open, transparent and accountable government.
“Mr Yong has done a disservice to his party and all Malaysians by criticising those who are exercising their constitutional right to rally and make their voices heard in regard to good governance, accountability and transparency.”
He said it was baffling why Yong had chosen to pick out the Christians among the thousands of Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Sikhs and others who participated.
Hermen told Yong to study his own party history which had seen Christian members championing causes to achieve the high ideals of nationhood, naming Gerakan founding member Tan Chee Khoon as a case in point.
“History is replete with Christians marching with people against racial discrimination, wars, injustices in society and abuse of human rights. Why should it be different in our country?
“We call on him to unequivocally rescind his negative statement made against Christians and their leaders and also for the party leaders to make their stand on whether they agree with him.
“We also call on his party to repair the damage caused by his statement and work to restore the good relationship that the party has maintained with church leaders thus far.”
Source : FMT Reporters Online