Muhyiddin’s faux pas claiming that extremism had never existed among Muslims in Malaysia is of the same class as Najib’s first praise and glorification of Islamic State terrorism

The Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyddin Yassin’s faux pas claiming that extremism had never existed among Muslims in Malaysia is of the same class as the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s faux pas giving praise and glorification of Islamic State terrorism last June.

Muhyiddin’s latest faux pas join’s the DPM’s host of infamous “quotes” like “I am Malay first, Malaysian second” and “Malaysian youngsters are receiving better education than children in the United States, Britain and Germany”.

If there are no extremists among Muslims in Malaysia, how come the Bukit Aman Special Counter Terrorism Division had arrested 51 persons suspected of being Malaysian militants.

Furthermore, why have the number of Muslim Malaysians fighting for Islamic State in Syria and Iraq gone up from 39 to 59 since October?

And why have Muslim Malaysians even gone to the extent of taking personal loans from banks and money-lenders to pay for their passage to Syria to join Islamic State and to fund their living expenses there, knowing that repayment of their loans is very slim?

Why have at least six Muslim Malaysians died in Syria and Iraq fighting for Islamic State?

Is Muhyiddin also suggesting that Najb’s Global Movement of Moderates has no relevance, role or importance to Malaysia but only for the rest of the world?

The fact is that there are extremists among all races and religions, whether in Malaysia or in the international arena, people who are so bigoted with racial and religious hatred and intolerance that they pose serious threat to the future of Malaysia and even the world.

This is why moderates of Malaysia, regardless of race, religion, region or politics, must stand united on this one common issue, to forge the unity of the moderates to save the country from the bigots and extremists and ensure that the majority voices of moderation, inclusion, tolerance and harmony drown out the voices and rhetoric of extremism, hatred and disharmony.

Muhyiddin should be careful with his statements and speeches, for his call for “stern action” to be taken against Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) director Eric Paulsen was followed up by swift police action the same night, involving about 20 police personnel to arrest Paulsen under the Sedition Act for his tweet accusing the Islamic Development Department (JAKIM) of promoting extremism.

Was it necessary for the Police to stage such a major show of force, when Paulsen had agreed yesterday to be in Bukit Aman to co-operate with police investigations.

Paulsen’s arrest under the Sedition Act has only highlighted the selectivity of law enforcement, from selective police investigations to the Attorney-General’s selective prosecutions, which have given Malaysia a bad name in the world with regard to the rule of law and the administration of justice in Malaysia.

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah