Thursday, January 7, 2010

What!?!? Not fair lah!

Just came across this news report that police in Sabah has prohibited a group of Christians from holding a peaceful demonstration. This is not fair lah. If UMNO can protest, why can't the Sabahans do that too? Looks like this discontentment will spread like wildfire in Sabah and then spillover into Sarawak. If that happens, I guess UMNO can start kissing it's "fixed deposits" bye bye. To compound this discriminatory act, the green light for the UMNO gathering was given by none other than the PM himself which will be held tomorrow after the Friday prayers.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Sabah police foil bid by Christian group to hold peaceful demo

January 6th 2010 at 2pm will go down in history as the day,a group of brave concerned Sabahans shook Sabah with their stand on the Allah issue.I thank the reporters and editors who interviewed me.

Out in force, Sabah police on Wednesday foiled an attempt by a group of Church activists to hold a peaceful gathering in Penampang- the heartland of the Christian community in the state.

Worried by the angry outburst against non-Muslims using the word Allah, they had wanted to publicly urge Prime Minister Najib Razak to show that he is a leader for all Malaysians and not just the Malays and the Muslims.

"I got a call from ASP Wan Badrul to call off the gathering in view of the sensitivity of the matter.I told him that the gathering would go on and assured that it would be peaceful. No shouting, no loud haler and no unruly behavior. But he was uncompromising and we could see they were crawling all over Penampang. So we decided to call it off as there were a few elderly people involved and we did not want any untoward incident," Ronnie Klassen, the organizing activist and PKR leader said in an interview.

Ironically when the Acting OCPD of Penampang,ASP Wan Badrul did not allow the gathering of the group of Church Activist in Penampang,in Kuala Lumpur the Home Ministry will allow a public demonstration against the “Allah” ruling, planned by Muslim groups this Friday at the Kampung Baru mosque here, to proceed and will only take action if “things get out of hand.”

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein Onn told a press conference here at a post-Cabinet meeting that the developments will be monitored and that action will only be taken if the need arises.Why the double standards?

“If Prime Minister Najib is sincere in his 1Malaysia, then this would be the time for him to prove his intentions. Confusion only occurs if it is meant for political reasons as in the case in Malaysia today. We hope that he will continue to respect Sabahans and Sarawakians on their continued usage of the word Allah. There should not be any confusion by our Muslim Brothers and Sisters as there is only one Allah and we should be proud to acknowledge him together.”
While not large, the core group of some 60 ‘old-faithfuls’ have been very effective in their outreach programmes. In April 2009, Ronnie managed to gather 20,000 signatures on a petition to the federal government not to ban the Catholic Herald, from the word Allah in its Malay-language section.
Part of their heritage

According to Ronnie, Sabahans and Sarawakians have been using the word Allah in churches well before the formation of Malaysia in 1963. This was a historical fact and Christian leaders in the Umno-Barisan Nasional should do more to explain this to the federal government.Have they forgotten that the people put them there and can also remove them? Similarly, PM Najib should not pretend not to know history and bury his head in the sand about this issue.
“The history of Christianity in Sabah and Sarawak goes a long way back in time, approximately 4 centuries ago,1818 to be exact. The Seventh Day Adventist Church had pastors from Indonesia who would conduct sermons in Bahasa Indonesia, thus the word 'Allah' was frequently used,” said Ronnie.
“Malay then became the medium of instruction in Sabah and Sarawak when the Education Act 1961 was extended to these states. But this led to a decline in English proficiency among Sabahan and Sarawakian Christians and resulted in a greater use of BM in Christianity. It was in 2003 after a controversy over the Iban Bible that the then Prime Minister allowed Malay-language bibles on the condition that it is labeled ‘Not for Muslims’.

“So what is frustrating the majority of Sabahans now is the total silence of the Christian BN leaders like Huguan Siou, Joseph Pairin Kitingan. Why isn’t he and the other Christian leaders doing more to explain this part of our heritage to the PM and the federal cabinet? Why aren’t they speaking up for the community? Where are they when they are needed?

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