Archive for January 26th, 2010

Allah row easy to solve if we follow His bidding, not Umno’s

By Wong Choon Mei, Harakah

The ongoing row over whether non-Muslims can use the word Allah to describe God has flushed out many systemic weaknesses, and also highlighted how unprincipled some of our political and religious leaders have become.

Just to stay on the winning side, many seem to think nothing of abandoning basic truth and simple facts. So much so, it is no longer religious principle but vested interest that is now the core tussle behind the row, and that whoever speaks the loudest – regardless of whether the verbiage is backed by the Quran or not – will emerge victorious.

Against such moral deterioration, what are the chances of an inter-faith dialogue finding a way forward that is satisfactory to all quarters? Against such deliberate cultivation of prejudice, can the voices of every participating faith be heard equally, or will they be drowned out selectively?

The answer depends on whose bidding Malaysians – be they Muslims or non-Muslims – follow.

Deliberate lies
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Would Tsu Koon raise in Cabinet tomorrow setting up of unity desks in all ministries and government departments to foster national unity and inter-racial, inter-religious and inter-cultural understanding on the ground?

The Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon yesterday called on media organisations to set up a special desk to be known as the Unity Desk to assist the government in improving mutual understanding among the multi-racial people in the country.

He said at the opening of the Media and Unity Symposium that the special desk could serve just like any other desk in the organisation, but with greater focus on efforts to foster national unity as well as religious and cultural understanding.

He suggested that media organisations with various and multi-language mediums should give priority to improving national unity and harmony by interacting frequently with one another to make the effort a success.

There is merit in Koh’s proposal and if there is any reservation, it is why Koh as the Minister responsible for KPI and national unity, should be tinkering at the edges of the problem of national unity when he should be grappling with the central issues as to why Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia slogan and concept have failed to live up to the early promise to inspire unity and solidarity among the diverse races, religions, cultures and regions in the country?
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