Friday, December 28, 2007

Christmas Heartbreak

We sought for a Christmas gift from Pak Lah, that the printing and publications permit for the Catholic Church's internal newsletter, The Herald be renewed without conditions.

Well, Pak Lah is certainly no Father Christmas, for clearly, there will be no joy delivered. Malaysiakini has reported today that the Internal Security Ministry, despite the furore over the past week or so, has "sent a directive to the Herald to remove its Bahasa Malaysia section and this will be effective when the new permit is issued."

While earlier, some may blame the Deputy Internal Security Minister for being a mini-warlord in putting forth unreasonable conditions for the renewal of the permit, it is crystal clear now that the real man behind it is none other that the Minister himself, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. The deputy minister was only his spokesperson:
“Only Muslims can use ‘Allah’. It’s a Muslim word. It’s from (the Arabic language). We cannot let other religions use it because it will confuse people,” he said when contacted.

“We cannot allow this use of ‘Allah’ in non-Muslim publications, nobody except Muslims. The word ‘Allah’ is published by the Catholics. It’s not right,” he told Malaysiakini.
Of course, in front of others, the Prime Minister will preach the "spirit of tolerance". I've already written about tolerating Pak Lah, so I won't go on another bout of rant here. But I'm certain readers will be able to make their own judgements.

The Herald aren't the only victims of abuse of the country's laws by the Prime Minister. The Evangelical Church of Borneo in Sabah has also sued the Government for a similar issue on the 10th December. The Herald has now done the same.

I am certain that the Government's actions will not stop here. After all, the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak has already stated Malaysia is an Islamic State, and was "never, never a secular state" and Pak Lah defended it.

Check out Jeff Ooi's story on how MCA leaders, who couldn't even stand up to the UMNO Youth Chief, have been tasked to ask the Churches to withdraw their suit. Do you want to vote for a party that does UMNO's bidding and not fight for your rights as defined under the law?
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