PETALING JAYA: The conspicuous absence of the prime minister or his representative at the Christian Federation of Malaysia’s (CFM) annual Christmas high tea yesterday is disappointing as it does not augur well for his Keluarga Malaysia concept, says an MP.
Seputeh MP Teresa Kok said Ismail Sabri Yaakob should realise that 9% of Malaysians were Christians.
She said she was told by the organisers that Ismail’s office did not even respond to the invitation unlike past prime ministers who not only responded but had attended the gathering in the festive spirit.
She said in the past, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Najib Razak had made it a point to attend the annual function to show they were prime ministers for all Malaysians.
“There was a year when even Muhyiddin Yassin represented the government as the deputy prime minister when Najib was abroad.
“This is the kind of Malaysia we want and expect as it shows inclusivity.”
Ismail had taken to Facebook to express his Christmas greetings, asking the people not to forget those who had been badly affected by the floods and to always obey SOPs to stay safe.
The National Evangelical Christian Fellowship (NECF), which organised the event this year, said they sent out the invitation like they always did in the past.
“I would like to think that it must have been the massive floods that the prime minister had to handle.
“I believe that is his priority right now,” NECF president Eu Hong Seng told FMT when contacted.
In his speech earlier, Eu said the NECF applauded the true Malaysian spirit when they “showed up for each other” at a time when race and religious barriers were thrown aside.
“The many who went out to search for and to rescue the thousands who were trapped in the floodwaters, set up kitchens to cook for the hungry, sourced for boats and made deliveries of necessities right up to the wee hours of the morning were the common people.
“Many temples, churches, gurdwaras, mosques and NGOs facilitated shelters and served as distribution centres.
“What we are witnessing today is the victory of the common people,” he said.