Media Statement by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 14th August 2009:
DAP does not insult Islam or any religion and does not condone any DAP leader or member in insulting Islam or any religion
Deputy Prime Minister and UMNO Deputy President Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yasin is recklessly making great political capital out of a mistake made by PAS spiritual leader and Kelantan Mentri Besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, completely oblivious of the harm it can do to the cause of national unity, inter-religious harmony and in particular Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia concept.
With screaming headlines today like “DAP hina Islam: Nik Aziz di bidas” (Utusan Malaysia), “‘Nik Aziz jual Islam untuk politik’ – Muhyiddin selar pemimpin Pas halalkan tindakan DAP” (Berita Harian), “Muhyiddin in disbelief over Nik Aziz’s stand” (NST), the Barisan Nasional-controlled mainstream media have fanned and incited racial and religious sentiments in two ways:
These are downright irresponsible and inexcusable tactics which can only incite racial and religious sentiments and the latest proof that Umno Ministers and leaders are the greatest threat to Najib’s 1Malaysia concept, as instead of tamping down irresponsible utterances which can arouse racial and religious hatred and animosity, they are doing their utmost in the opposite direction in inciting greater inter-racial and inter-religious discord.
In the first place, let me state without any equivocation that DAP does not insult Islam or any religion and does not condone any DAP leader or member in insulting Islam or any religion – as all the great religions in Malaysia must be respected by all Malaysians particularly Malaysian leaders if the country is to thrive and flourish as a developed country.
I welcome Muhyiddin to specify instances where the DAP had in insulted Islam or condoned DAP leaders or members in insulting Islam – or he should be mindful of his heavy responsibility as Deputy Prime Minister not to sabotage Najib’s 1Malaysia concept by making baseless but serious allegations of this nature.
I was already offended by Utusan Malaysia front-page headline yesterday: “DAP boleh hina Islam - Nik Aziz” as it implied that DAP had been guilty of insulting Islam, which is a baseless allegation emanating from Umno quarters.
In the Berita Harian today (p.7), in admitting that he had used a wrong word, Nik Aziz said:
“Pada masa itu (kelmarin), boleh jadi saya sebut tidak salah, ia sebenarnya tidak pelik kerana memang mereka tidak tahu Islam.”
In jumping into the fray by exploiting Nik Aziz’s wrong choice of word, when knowing that DAP does not insult Islam and does not condone DAP leaders and members from insulting Islam or any other religion, are we seeing the emergence of Muhyiddin as the worst possible example of a desperate Umno leader who is prepared to do anything to gain political popularity at the expense of inter-racial and inter-religious harmony and even Najib’s 1Malaysia concept?
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor