Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan (Patriot) is baffled by Perlis Mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin’s assertion that Muslims are being bullied under the Pakatan Harapan and his telling Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad to listen to the “reality” on the ground.
It all depends on which side of the news the learned mufti chooses to lend his ears to. Surely he cannot be ignorant of the work by spin masters concocting lies about issues of race, religion and royalty, the bullets of last resort – as the opposition parties have nothing on national issues to fault the Pakatan Harapan government with.
Peddlers of fake news are aplenty in the arena of psychological warfare of racial politicking. By listening to the uncorroborated grievances of the people, he will end up with concerns that are misplaced.
Our prime minister and his cabinet’s main concern is the economy. Putting right the economy, which has been raped with successive scandals by the previous administration, will go a long way in helping the people, the majority of whom comprise the Malay poor.
The government allocated RM6.3bn to rescue Felda and another RM17.8bn on a restructuring plan for Lembaga Tabung Haji, the hajj pilgrims’ fund board. These bailouts of RM24bn to solve problems created by the past administration are a huge amount – and the non-Malays are not protesting.
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BN-era infrastructure contracts given to Malays/Umno cronies are allowed by the Ministry of Finance to continue after renegotiation, saving a meager sum of RM806m. If these actions of the government are not considered kind towards the people, particularly the Muslims, then what is?
Mohd Asri has lost credibility for not speaking up strongly enough against Najib Razak and the top officials of the previous administration when the mega scandals disgraced our nation. He has little credibility to speak on the concerns of the people now.
A mufti, as head of the Islamic religion in the state, must also propagate unity among all races of different religions. Every religion advocates understanding, tolerance and respect for each other’s beliefs.
The issue of the arrest of independent preacher Muhammad Zamri Vinoth Kalimuthu for allegedly insulting Hinduism, which Mohd Asri seemed to have protested, is an isolated one. Let the investigation runs its course.
Patriot would like to reiterate that no one, no preacher, whatever his or her religious denomination, should make a comparison between one’s religion and others others. Doing so would invite animosity that would further divide further our society, which is at the lowest ebb now.
The reality on the ground is that Mohd Asri and his cohorts – who are prejudiced, sow hatred and spin lies to create uneasiness and distrust – should be stopped. For the future of our country- to be prosperous, peaceful, and to safeguard our future generations; they must start thinking as Malaysians.
Retired Brigadier General Dato Mohamed Arshad Raji is president of Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan (Patriot).