3 December 2018
An Umno Youth leader has criticised Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali for urging Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad to reduce the number of Indian ministers in his cabinet.
Shahril Hamdan acknowledged there is general unease among the Malay community over Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department P Waythamoorthy’s remarks concerning last week’s temple unrest.
The Umno Youth vice-chief also noted Waythamoorthy’s accusation during an interview with a foreign media a decade ago that the BN government had discriminated Indians in Malaysia.
A recording of the interview had recently gone viral. Waythamoorthy was then a leader of Hindraf.
However, Shahril said the dissatisfaction towards the minister should not be exploited into a racial issue or to use racial rhetoric to gain popularity.
“Even if Waythamoorthy ‘messed up’, that is no reason to ask the prime minister to reduce Indian ministers. That is straight up playing the racial card, there’s no other way to see it. And I’m against it totally.
“Relatedly if anyone wants to ask Waythamoorthy to step down, it should be because they feel he is unfit to be the unity minister, not because he is Indian. And one should definitely not imply that therefore we shouldn’t have ‘so many Indians’ in the cabinet,” he told Malaysiakini.
Shahril said while Waythamoorthy’s remarks can be interpreted as inflammatory, there is no need to respond with more incendiary statements.
“I think Waythamoorthy’s initial apology could have come off as more sincere instead of qualifying it (his remarks) to the hilt. But similarly, why should anyone else respond in kind?
“In the end, all they are doing is perpetuating this ‘us against them’ mentality. If the extremes prevail and the centre doesn’t hold, Malaysia changes, for the worse,” he warned.
Police will investigate Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali’s speech during a protest prior to the organisation’s annual general assembly this afternoon, according to Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin.
Muhyiddin said if police found that he had uttered words intended to spark racial tension, action would be taken against him.
“I leave it to the police to look into the statement made by Ibrahim Ali or anyone else in Perkasa. Police will investigate their statements,” he told a press conference after visiting the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple in Seafield, Subang Jaya which had been the scene of riots earlier this week.
Muhyiddin said Perkasa had previously met with authorities and promised to abide by the law.
“They had promised not to make statements that they should not make, such as those that will spark more problems,” he said.
Muhyiddin said police were present during the Perkasa protest and had been observing them.
“They have been given the green light to do what is necessary,” he said.
Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali has said that the patience of the Malays is running thin and warned that the right-wing Malay movement is ready to “run amok” across the country if issues affecting the Malays continue to persist.
Speaking to some 200 supporters and members at Perkasa’s “jihad” rally at Kampung Bharu in Kuala Lumpur, Ibrahim trained his guns on Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department P Waythamoorthy and the latter’s criticism of the police during the recent Seafield temple riot.
The Malay rights group also criticised the government’s initial proposal to ratify the United Nations’ International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Icerd), which it later decided against.
“The age of rhetorics is over […] For us in Perkasa, the patience of the Malays is over. Today is just round one, a message.
“After this, Perkasa will not keep quiet. If need be, Perkasa will run amok across Malaysia,” he said at the rally being held in conjunction with Perkasa’s annual general meeting.
Speaking at the rally, Ibrahim, however, later appeared to pull back on his “run amok” statement, explaining that any action to be taken by the movement would be in accordance with the law.
“Run amok here means the Malays will not sit by quietly. We will voice out all sorts of demands, we will assemble.
“Don’t take run amok in its actual meaning. In short, it (run amok) means we will take action,” he said.
Perkasa’s “Jihad” rally tomorrow is in conjunction with its annual general meeting. It’s secretary-general Syed Hasan Syed Ali said the rally’s theme will be in regards to current events.
1 December 2018
PETALING JAYA — Participants of a rally organised by Malay rights group Perkasa in Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur, tomorrow have been warned not to make any inflammatory racial statements in the wake of the riots at Sri Maha Mariamman Temple in Seafield.
Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said in a statement today that the police will closely monitor the rally and will take action against participants and the organiser if they threatened public order and safety with statements that can cause racial tension.
“I believe that Perkasa under a responsible leadership, will always uphold the rule of law, the harmony between the people as well as the peace and security of the country,” he said.
Perkasa is holding the ‘Perkasa Jihad Assembly’ at noon as part of its ninth annual general meeting.