MCA president Liow Tiong Lai’s scream of “No-ooo-oo” was splashed on the J-Star front page earlier this week.
He was voicing the objection by his party to the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Amendment Bill tabled in Parliament by PAS president Hadi Awang.
BELOW: Sunday Star banner headline on May 29
A day earlier on Saturday (May 28), Liow had said MCA “cannot support any bill which could lend itself to ‘great inconsistency, injustice and inequality’.”
MCA proclamation against the hudud “injustice” was also J-Star front page news.
And the day before that (Friday, May 27), Liow similarly hogged the J-Star front page to declare that Malaysia is facing a potential “national crisis”. The paper quoted him as saying the incipient constitutional crisis stemming from Hadi’s bill “will ruin the inter-ethnic relationship in the country” — see below.
MCA leading revolt against Prime Minister
Even before any Parliamentary debate or legal feedback from the AG and the bench, a BN component party has already decided that Hadi’s “hudud bill” is unconstitutional.
In tandem, the MCA-owned media worked itself into a lather against the possibility of Malaysia becoming an Islamic state.
MCA is galvanizing key Chinese organizations – Hua Zong, Dong Zong, the Chinese Assembly Halls, Chinese Chambers of Commerce, etc – to smack down Hadi’s proposed amendments to syariah criminal jurisdiction.
Liow, along with two of his fellow MCA ministers Wee Ka Sioing and Ong Ka Chuan, have threatened to resign their cabinet posts if Hadi’s bill were to be passed. This is an act of open rebellion against the BN chairman.
Of late MCA has been opposing Umno at every turn whenever the parti Melayu tries to adopt a more Islamic approach.
The confrontational behaviour of the MCA has prompted Isma to label the BN Chinese party as “anti Islam” (see above).
MCA is confused and has irrational fear of Islam
Ridhuan Tee has also charged that MCA’s anti Islam outlook is the reason which prompted him to quit the party.
It is bizarre to recall how various of the Chinese party’s leaders had been constantly slamming Ridhuan — a case of MCA attacking its own life member albeit a Muslim one.
Bad MCA ex-member who is “extremist and racist”
Wanita MCA chief Heng Seai Kie in fact describes Ridhuan as “extremist and racist”, and adding that “he was not an exemplary member”.
Her press statement can be read @ ‘MCA’s so glad Ridhuan Tee is out’ (The Heat Malaysia, 31 May 2016).
Heng’s allegations are equally bizarre. Does she consider Ridhuan to be anti-Chinese racist? If so, why did he bother to sign up for life membership with the Malaysian CHINESE Association?
Bad Ridhuan who is unlike party’s Malay-speaking Baba founder
Heng further accuses Ridhuan of not being able to “comprehend the vision and mission of MCA ie as in the words of our founder Tun Sir Tan Cheng Lock ‘to help, in cooperation with the Malays and other communities, the development of the process of making the whole of Malaya one country, one people and one government’.”
Is the Wanita MCA boss claiming that her party people have cooperated with the Malays better than Ridhuan has cooperated with the Malays? Her claim is not very convincing in light of MCA’s manic reaction to the hudud desired by PAS and perhaps by some sections in Umno.
If MCA is really so eager to cooperate with the Malays as claimed by Heng, why not at least be more understanding (open to the Muslim point of view) about hudud which is wanted by many Malays?
Bad Muslim ex-member who supports syariah enhancement
Heng opined that “all our citizens and the country have the most to lose socially and economically if any religious extremism prevails”.
So according to her, enhancing syariah is equivalent to promoting religious extremism.
She additionally declared that “Malaysia cannot afford to descend the slippery road like in Syria or Pakistan”. Actually, Heng provides us an interesting insight into the MCA mindset, i.e. its belief that Malaysia will descend the slippery road like in Syria or Pakistan should Parliament pass Hadi’s bill to enhance syariah.
Pakistan suffers from the flare-up of religious riots now and again. Pakistan also carries out the death sentence on Christians for blaspheming the Prophet Muhammad.
Meanwhile, Syria is a war-torn country and its refugees are flooding Europe. Is Heng suggesting that Malaysia will be torn by civil war and our Jerusubang refugees fleeing to Tasmania if Hadi’s proposed syariah amendments are adopted?
Heng insists that the attempted blackmail of Najib by MCA is the party’s move “to safeguard the spirit of moderation of our beloved country” as well as to protect the federal constitution.
Ridhuan bad and religious, MCA good and secular
She insists moreover, “We are a SECULAR country with Islam as the official religion” (capital-letter emphasis is Heng’s).
Heng, the MCA and its J-Star media are wrong on both counts.
Firstly, we’re not a secular country. We’re a Muslim country.
We practise syariah law. PAS wants hudud.
A secular country does not uphold religious law and neither does a secular country have Sultans and the YDP who swear an oath to uphold Islam. A secular country does not favour one faith over another, and neither does a secular country privilege any religion.
Secondly, Islam is not the “official” religion. Instead, Islam is THE religion of the federation.
A country can have more than one official religion just as a country can have more than one official language. Switzerland, for example, has four national languages. India has two official languages — Hindi and English.
The status of Islam as THE religion of the federation means it is ‘the’ one and only faith characterizing Malaysia. Islam does not share its exalted status with any other religion in Malaysia although some Christians are hoping that one day Christianity might become an official religion too.
MCA is judge, jury and executioner
Heng concludes her defence of MCA’s opposition to the Hadi Awang bill by saying, “Being infused with Islamic values is OK as they have universal good practices! But we absolutely cannot have two judicial systems – it is unjust and messy”.
But what if certain values are particular to Islam alone and cannot pass Heng’s “universal good practices” test?
Would she then impose her and MCA’s criteria of universalism to arbitrate on which aspects the Muslims can or cannot “infuse” into their syariah implementation?
MCA and its Scissorati are Gunting dalam Lipatam
Ridhuan Tee made a valid point when he said that he understood the Malay psyche better than MCA leaders, and that as an ustaz he was prepared to help his erstwhile political party bridge their woeful conceptualization of Islam.
But rather than taking up his offer to assist, MCA chose to join hands with the Dapster-evangelistas to bash him relentlessly.
With the MCA frenzy against Hadi’s bill, Ridhuan finally reached his tipping point and conclusion that MCA is anti Islam.
MCA’s reaction to Ridhuan quitting the party is gladness and good riddance to him.
Little does MCA know that the majority of Umno Malays feel the same about them, i.e. gladness and good riddance and a feeling that the BN Chinese component really can’t leave soon enough.
A couple of ex-Umno ministers have even questioned the loyalty of MCA’s machinery to BN. Former Info Minister Zainuddin Maidin once said,
“Saya juga dengan secara ikhlas memohon Presiden MCA yang baru Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai yang saya kenal sebagai seorang yang moderate supaya melihat kembali sikap akhbar MCA The Star agar tidak terus menjadi suara parti yang menggunting dalam lipatan.”
There’s a rumour that Najib is going to reshuffle his cabinet following the death of one deputy minister not too long ago in a helicopter crash.
MCA is proving itself the biggest impediment to perpaduan ummah. Too many from among the Umno voter base are beginning to believe that MCA is (being influenced by its Nest of Evangelistas to be) anti Islam.