Why the people have lost trust in the Government

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Raja Kamarul Bahrin Shah

Most Malaysians agree with Prime Minister Najib Razak’s statement that the deadly massacres in Turkey, Saudi Arabia and Bangladesh recently do not reflect true Islam.

The call by the Government’s own Mufti of Pahang categorising certain Malaysians as Kafir Harbi also does not reflect the true teachings of Islam.

Why then the long deafening silence and the half-hearted belated action of the authorities on this matter? Why the double standard when threats on life are directed at those not aligned with the Government? Are we citizens not entitled to the same protection by the law? It happened in Najib’s own backyard in the state of Pahang!

Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s department Dr Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki’s call that we Malaysians “must be united and cooperate with the authorities” in facing terrorist threats makes sense to most of us.

What does not make sense to us is the Government’s indifference and inaction on our reports of local “halal darah” – death threats and other provocations since 2015. We are expected to comply with the Government’s orders while the Government pays no heed to our pleas for protection as law-abiding citizens of Malaysia. What does Dr Asyraf take us all for?

Khairy Jamaluddin’s plan to talk to youths to draw them away from extremism also sounds like a good idea. He mentioned efforts to bring “experts” to universities and youth associations. We’d like to caution that today’s youths are bright and smart and they prefer a more balanced approach and not the Biro Tata Negara-like approach. We would like to suggest that he also invite Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa and Faiz Fadil Noor whose late fathers subscribed to a more tolerant and inclusive Islam. If the Government is serious and sincere in its efforts, they should consider our more inclusive and balanced approach seriously.

The proposals of all the three persons mentioned above are examples of why the rakyat are skeptical and not confident of the Government’s approach and intentions. The rakyat have heard it all from the Government and we say that “talk is cheap”. The rakyat today wants the Government to go that extra mile in walking its talk.

Lastly, we hope the Government advises its Muftis to refrain from making provocative statements, as this would only make the rakyat become more skeptical of the holy institutions they are supposed to represent.

And talking of provocations, we hope our Inspector-General of Police would refrain from further taunting the Malaysian Islamic State members with “come back if you dare” statements. He may end up having more than he can handle on his plate and regret his taunt. Never ever underestimate your enemy… especially if they can surface and melt into the local population.

Raja Kamarul Bahrin Shah is the Member of Parliament for Kuala Terengganu.

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