The latest criminal harassment and intimidation of DAP National Vice Chairperson and MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok for her “Onederful Malaysia CNY 2014” video must be condemned in the strongest possible terms.
The police should act under Section 124A of the Penal Code which provides for up to seven-year jail sentence for the offence by anyone who “attempts to overawe by means of criminal force” a Member of Parliament from exercising her lawful powers.
Last night, Utusan Malaysia had, around midnight, sent an SMS alert stating “Seputeh MP Teresa Kok was slapped by an unknown man after a ceramah at Taman Permatang Pauh at 11.30 pm”.
However, the Umno-owned daily soon issued a correction stating that Kok had not been slapped but was instead “handed” a rotten egg by a man, which later broke when they shook hands.
The incident occurred after Kok had explained her video “Onederful Malaysia CNY 2014” to about a crowd of 300 at Taman Permatang Pauh in Penang, that it was not anti-Malay, anti-Islam, anti-Rulers or anti-security forces, when a man in his 30s approached her as she was sitting down.
The man wanted to shake Kok’s hand. When Kok extended her hand and shook his, she realised that he held an egg in his palm which broke, soiling her hand and a little spilled on her clothes.
I welcome two recent developments showing that the police and authorities are beginning to take a more serious and responsible attitude towards the spate of hate crime and the incessant incitement of racial and religious animosities and hatred calculated to cause disharmony and mayhem in our plural society, whether through racial chaos or religious conflagration.
The first is the police recommendation that criminal intimidation charges be preferred against the two men who offered a cash bounty for anyone who successfully photographed themselves slapping Teresa Kok, although police investigation papers have been returned by the Attorney-General’s Chambers to the police for further refinement.
This was disclosed by the Kuala Lumpur CID chief Senior Asst Comm Gan Kong Meng, who said the police will resubmit the papers to the AG’s Chambers soon.
Pakatan Rakyat MPs will be demanding an explanation in Parliament next week on whether the AG’s Chambers have acted to prosecute the self-styled “Council of Islamic NGOs” who committed a slew of offences in their Feb. 6 “slap and chicken” demonstration in Kuala Lumpur, not only offering a cash bounty for anyone who slap Teresa Kok, but also “chicken-slaughtering and blood-smearing” on pictures of DAP and Pakatan leaders, sedition and incitement to create another May 13 racial riot.
The other incident is the confirmation by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) that it has launched a joint investigation with the police on a Kedah blog for spreading false claims of Muslim apostasy – clearly calculated to incite racial and religious animosities, ill-will and hatred and cause inter-racial and inter-religious disharmony and mayhem.
Last week, women’s rights activist Yu Ren Chung complained that the Kedah blog had in March 2012 spread false news of apostasy based on a two-year-old photograph featuring him and several Muslim women sitting on wooden benches that appeared to resemble church pews.
On Yu’s website, he claimed the picture was originally taken on February 29, 2012 at an event to discuss the National Family Policy organised by government agency National Population and Family Development Board (LPPKN).
The advocacy officer with the Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO) stressed that the venue was not in a church but at the International Institute of Islamic Thought and Civilization (Istac) here.
The Kedah blog also defamed the woman in the picture, Zaiton Ismail, an activist with Islam Ikram Malaysia causing embarrassment to her and her family with the false news that she had converted to Christianity.
Ikram has condemned the “irresponsibility” of doctoring the picture to spread the news of the alleged conversion and demanded an apology from the Kedah blogger for the “despicable act”.
Prof Madya Dr Roohaida Othman, the head of Ikram’s women’s wing, reminded the blogger that so sinful was slander in the eyes of Allah that it is considered worse than the killing of innocents.
Parliament expects prompt and speedy action by the MCMC and the police against the cyberliars who have been allowed for too long to perpetrate their irresponsible, dangerous and treacherous activities on the social media to incessantly incite racial and religious animosities, ill-will and hatred, posing a grave threat to the peace, harmony and very survival of Malaysia as a multi-racial and multi-religious nation.
In fact, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should present a White Paper to Parliament next week to detail what the government has done to save Malaysia from the plots and machinations of these anti-national and treacherous elements who misused and abused the social media and the Internet to incessantly incite racial and religious animosities and hatred with lies and falsehoods.
I have just become a victim of the latest devious misuse and abuse of social media to escalate the incitement of racial and religious animosities and hatred in plural Malaysia.
Last night I twittered:
“Umno cyberliars are getting very desperate n devising new ways to paint DAP as anti-Malay anti-Islam anti-Rulers. Work of cowards n traitors”.
This was after an Umno cybertrooper accused me of an anti-Islam quotation which I had never made. The quotation was framed as a Pakatan Rakyat publicity quote, carrying not only the party symbols of the three PR parties of DAP, PKR and PAS, but also the DAP’s “Ubah” logo.
Bearing my photograph, the anti-Islam quotation allegedly coming from me states:
“I PERSONALLY THINK THAT MALAYSIA WILL NOT BE ABLE TO REACH ITS FULL POTENTIAL AS A DEVELOPED COUNTRY DUE TO THE LIMITATIONS OF ISLAM. NOW IS THE TIME FOR US TO REMOVE ALL THE BARRIERS BY CHANGING THE CURRENT GOVERNMENT AND THE CONSTITUTION. INI KALILAH!”
This short social media quote, purportedly originating from me, is a downright lie, as I had never made such a statement. It is part of a grand conspiracy to paint the DAP and DAP leaders as anti-Malay, anti-Islam and anti-Rulers – which Teresa Kok’s “Onderful Malaysia CNY 2014” is accused of, although not a single person has been able to come forward to point out one single instance of the video being anti-Malay, anti-Islam and anti-Rulers despite being public invitation to do so for over a month!
When will the authorities stop the merchants and vendors of hate speech, especially on the social media, from their dastardly deeds of incessant incitement of racial and religious animosities, ill-will and hatred to pit race against race and religion against religion?
If there are Pakatan Rakyat elements who are involved in such reckless and irresponsible incitement of racial and religious hatred through lies and falsehoods, I full agree that the full weight of the law should be brought to bear upon them.
Will the Prime Minister, the Cabinet and the Barisan Nasional leadership also agree that the full weight of the law should be brought to bear against any BN cybertrooper for incitement of racial and religious hatred through lies and falsehoods?
Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s recent advice to “ignore” the instigators and extremists is a most irresponsibl response when the government and the country should give no quarter to wipe out the instigators and extremists!
To break the back of the plague of the problem of incessant incitement of racial and religious hatred through lies and falsehoods on the social media, I call for the formation of a high-powered squad to clean up the social media of incessant incitement of racial and religious animosities and hatred through lies and falsehoods to set Malaysia aflame.
To have credibility and to ensure that actions will be taken against all anti-national and traitorous elements who want to set the country aflame with their incessant incitement of racial and religious animosities, ill-will and hatred, regardless of their sources of origin, such a high-powered squad should comprise representatives from the MCMC, the Police, as well as representatives from the Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Rakyat!
(Media Statement in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday,6th March 2014)