Jaya, Friday): The Star today (p. 18) carried a report quoting the
Parliamentary Secretary to the Information Ministry, Datuk Zainuddin Maidin,
castigating the DAP for keeping quiet on the statement by the acting PAS
President, Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang that non-Muslims have no policy-making
role in an Islamic State.
The Star report states:
“Zainuddin said Hadi’s statement clearly proved that PAS did not respect the rights of non-Muslims in the country and only needed their support to win in elections.
“He also questioned why DAP leaders had kept quiet over Hadi’s statement yet had the audacity to question the statement by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad that Malaysia was an Islamic country.
“’I would like to ask Lim Kit Siang (DAP national chairman) what is his role in this issue.
“’Why is he keeping mum when a PAS leader had stated that the non-Muslims would lose any decision-making rights in an Islamic state,’ he added.”
Zainuddin and Star should not black out DAP statements and
then allege that DAP had “kept quiet” about Hadi’s statement that
non-Muslims have no policy-making role in an Islamic State
In actual fact, several statements on Hadi’s shocking
position had been made by DAP and DAPSY
leaders, but they were all blacked out by the Star and the mass media
under Zainuddin’s control and influence.
Zainuddin should withdraw and apologise for his baseless castigation of
the DAP for having kept quiet on Hadi’s statement that non-Muslims have no
policy-making role in an Islamic state.
For Zainuddin and Star’s benefit, let me remind them of
my statement made a day before Zainuddin’s baseless criticisms
where I said that Hadi’s position that non-Muslims would have no
policy-making role in an Islamic state is a clear statement that in the PAS
version of an Islamic state, non-Muslims are immediately
relegated to a second-class citizenship status, completely contrary to
the meaning and spirit of the 1957 Merdeka Constitution, the “social
contract” and the 1963 Malaysia Agreement.
My statement dated 28th August said:
“The subsequent grudging concession by Hadi that non-Muslims could take part in making policies in PAS’ Islamic government on general issues such as housing and transportation has only compounded the gravity of the diminution and relegation of non-Muslim Malaysians to second-class citizenship status – as it is a clear exclusion of their fundamental and inalienable right to take part in determining the national destiny of plural Malaysia.
“Why should non-Muslims be consulted only on issues like housing and transportation and relegated to their respective communal or religious ghettos while excluded from the decision-making process on crucial issues like finance, education, defence, justice and nation-building?
“Is Hadi’s subsequent concession on housing and transportation solely influenced by the fact that in the Barisan Nasional government, these have become traditional non-Muslim ministerial portfolios held either by MCA or MIC, and does this mean that PAS’ version of Islamic State is being influenced by UMNO practices?
“Hadi’s use of communist countries to justify the PAS stand that while non-Muslims could assume executive roles in government, only Muslims should formulate policies is most shocking.
“How could an Islamic party use an atheistic creed which is the very antithesis of democracy to justify its exclusion of non-Muslim citizens from policy-making roles in the governance of the country?
“ By doing so, it has focused sharply on the compatibility of PAS’ Islamic State with democracy and pluralism, let alone human rights, women rights, social tolerance, development and modernity.
“Hadi’s frequent use of the United States as an example to exclude non-Muslims from policy decision-making process is also misguided. Hadi often asked why it should be different in an Islamic state when in the United States, policies are made based on the ruling government’s respective ideologies.
“Hadi does not seem to know that in the United States, it is not unusual for Republicans to serve in important capacities in Democratic administrations with policy-making powers and vice versa – raising another vital question about the compatibility of PAS’ Islamic State with democracy and pluralism.”
Zainuddin should ensure that the electronic and printed
media under his control make amends for their blackout of this statement by
giving it prominent coverage. Just
because he has become a politician does not mean he should abandon the
elementary rule he had learnt as a journalist – to check his facts first
before jumping to any conclusion.