Hornbill Unleashed

April 4, 2017

PKR questions whether National Wasatiyyah Policy can effectively address problems

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:01 AM

Image result for Boniface Willy TumekThe people have no reason to believe that the National Wasatiyyah Policy, announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak recently, will be able to effectively address the social, religious and racial problems besetting Malaysian society today.

State PKR vice chairman Boniface Willy Tumek believed the policy will drive Malaysians even further apart because of problems created by extremism and radicalism, amongst others, that are present in society nowadays.

“The objectives of the policy supposedly aims to promote a high spirit of mutual tolerance and resolve society’s problems created by extremism and radicalism, amongst others.

“We would have expected that with the introduction of the policy, the many issues involving infringement of basic rights of non-Muslims would have been resolved but we have yet to see any progress on any of the issues,” he said yesterday.

Boniface, who is also PKR Mas Gading branch chairman, said the recent kidnapping of Pastor Raymond Koh, which many feared was related to his activities as a Christian pastor, seemed to indicate that religious intolerance was becoming even more pronounced and was being displayed by acts of violence and terrorism.

He said the call for the Wasatiyyah concept to be included in our education institution therefore rings hollow.

“Our educators and students cannot be expected to be shining examples of the success of the National Wasatiyyah Policy if past issues are left unresolved, providing reminders of what has been done in the past. All these issues are seen to be condoned by the government.”

Boniface said some of the challenges faced by the people today, particularly the non-Muslims, included the ban on the use of the word ‘Allah’ by Christians in January 2009; the seizure of Bahasa Melayu Bibles in January 2014 which was resolved in November 2014; unilateral conversion (into Islam) of minors; and the unwarranted high content of Islamic history in school history textbooks.

Other challenges faced included Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid’s anti-Christian statement in August 2015; the anti-Christian seminars organised by UiTM; and the Act 355 amendment, which many see as a precursor to PAS’ attempts to implement hudud law in Malaysia.

“It must be noted that some of the challenges faced involve our education institutions.”

Boniface said if Najib was sincere and serious about the National Wasatiyyah Policy and promoting moderation, there must be actions on his part to give the people reason to be hopeful.

For a start, Boniface said Najib should immediately declare the withdrawal of the ban on the use of the word ‘Allah’ by non-Muslims; a ban on unilateral conversion of minors into Islam; a review and revision of the contents of our school history textbooks; a ban on all activities detrimental to inter-faith and interracial relations, including seminars that promote misunderstanding of and hatred for other religions in all education institutions.

He said Najib should also immediately declare a ban on government officials, including politicians, from engaging in the activities mentioned above and Barisan Nasional’s full commitment to prevent Act 355 becoming law.

“Without taking meaningful and real measures to show the government’s sincerity, the policy will have no effect on the younger generation, except to reinforce the perception that words do not translate into actions where moderation and the government/authorities are concerned.

“It would also be advisable to re-examine the objectives of the policy. Mutual tolerance is not an appropriate objective as the word ‘tolerance’ implies putting up with something bad or disagreeable and therefore tolerance comes with a limit.

“The better premise and objective is harmonious co-existence and mutual acceptance.”

Source : @ Borneo Post Online


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