The Malaysian Insider
January 04, 2014
Dear prime minister,
If I were still a member of parliament, I would table a motion of no confidence in you.
The Speaker would probably reject it even before it could be debated and votes counted, but I would do it anyway.
Your indifferent silence and total lack leadership on the “Allah” issue is bringing this country to the brink of catastrophe, one that neither you nor the government will be able to pull us back from once it is too late. The clock is ticking.
It is not my intention to ridicule you, for you have my utmost respect, but what else can be done to move you to act and manage the dangerous situation we are in at this moment?
This cannot be allowed to continue because there are elements, real troublemakers, who will bring turmoil to our peace-loving people.
You must first recognise that this is the most difficult, volatile and dangerous issue the country has ever had to deal with.
Never before has a conflict of this gravity been allowed to fester for 30 years with no solution in sight.
The problem did not start with you, but under your charge, it has reached the stage of implosion.
The animosity between Muslims and Christians has reached fever pitch and unless it is managed promptly and with sensitivity, the outcome will be grave for the whole country.
You may think that so long as the majority of Muslims in Tanah Melayu are kept appeased, the problem will disappear. You are wrong. The problems are more serious than you think.
The whole of the Federation of Malaysia will implode Mr Prime Minister, if nothing is done.
The people expect you to do something beyond spouting rhetoric to an Umno audience.
Like I said before, convene a meeting of the Rulers’ Council. Call for a meeting of the Council of Churches. Offer them something that all good leaders do: peaceful alternatives.
Talking to one another is the way civilised communities conduct themselves. Leaders who inflame the situation must be hauled up and discipline imposed on the rabble-rousers.
That is what you must do, because that is what leaders do.
The act of confiscating Bibles by an institution of the state is not carried out anywhere else in the modern world – this surely should alert you that something has gone out of control.
You must remind the country that you are the leader and that there is no one else. You must order a stop to such actions and if Jais does not accept your orders, then you must act accordingly.
We are facing an issue of public order and national security and you, as a leader, must recognise this and be prepared to act.
There are maybe just three million Christians in the country but believers and followers of other faiths are also watching how this situation develops.
The whole world is watching us, and it is watching how you deal with this.
You may be a moderate to David Cameron and Barack Obama, but the real test of your mettle is in your ability to find a peaceful solution to the problem in hand and not make Malaysia a news item like Central African Republic or South Sudan.
You have to act now.
This is not the time for false courage and saving face.
A century ago, Franz Ferdinand declared that the Weimar Republic would not be treated like a “second-rate power”.
Then British prime minister Lloyd George was equally vehement that Britain would not let any other power dictate the politics of Europe.
The protagonists would not back down and when Ferdinand was assassinated the bloodbath began.
Millions died and entire European civilisations were left in tatters. All because no one wanted to look second rate and no one wanted to back down. There were no leaders in Europe then, only those who wanted to save face.
In this conflict in Malaysia today, both sides are full of emotions. They need cool heads to temper their actions.
They need someone to bring them together. Here, the prime minister needs to summon all the strength he has and provide a peaceful solution to the problem.
This is what the country urgently expects from his leadership. – January 4, 2014.