PETALING JAYA: Popular singer Francissca Peter, whose patriotic-themed song “Setia” once dominated the airwaves in the late 1980s, has called on Malaysians, especially artistes, to unite, following controversial remarks made about the Chinese and Indian community in the country.
In a Facebook post, Francissca – popularly known as Fran – said she was deeply saddened that a non-Malaysian is allowed to “freely condemn and incite hatred” towards Chinese and Indian Malaysians.
She said there was a need to acknowledge that many honest and hardworking Malaysians from all racial and religious backgrounds contributed to Malaysia’s development.
This is why the entertainer, who is of mixed parentage, said she could not stay silent and “accept accusations of disloyalty, racism and religious bigotry” towards the country and Malaysians.
“When outsiders and hateful, divisive persons come into your house and condemn your family, they are not just condemning me but my parents and grandparents who were Malaysians through and through, including all my fellow Chinese and Indian Malaysians and their ancestors, too,” she said.
Controversial preacher Dr Zakir Naik recently caused an outcry when he questioned the loyalty of Malaysian Hindus to Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, and was later quoted as saying that the Chinese community in Malaysia were also considered to be “guests” in the country.
Police have since summoned Naik to record his statement after more than 100 police reports were lodged against him. He is expected to be called in again on Monday.
Francissca, who was once known as the Proton Girl, went on to urge Malaysian artistes from all cultural and religious backgrounds to stand in solidarity in condemning “this latest racial hate attack by a specific non-Malaysian and individuals who question the loyalty of Chinese and Indian Malaysians”.
“Please speak out against any person who questions and insults our beliefs, our cultures and our rights as equal citizens and those who wish to destroy the social fabric of Malaysia by dividing us and making us hate each other,” she said.
She also expressed hope that her fans, of whom she said over 80% were Malays, would stick by her.
As passionate, peace-loving Malaysians, she said they should not be indifferent but instead, stand up united and speak out against any form of social injustice, bullying and abuse.
The people, she said, must pressure Putrajaya to do the right thing.
Francissca, who had previously described herself as a patriot, said that Malaysia is home to a multiracial society.
“We are all Malaysians. We will strive to unite in multiplicity as we have always done. Let no one destroy that!”