The Malaysian Insider reported that Karpal Singh calls for the de-registration of all political or professional bodies which operate along racial and religious lines, saying the move would work in the interest of unity. “The government cannot allow associations to operate along racial and religious lines. It is a very serious matter,” said Karpal.
However, I greatly disagree in this matter. First and foremost, Karpal Singh needs to go back to his roots and remember the history of the acceptance of the Chinese and Indians in Malaysia. During the days when the African-Americans were segregated from the whites, the Malaysian government have already recognised the Chinese and Indians as their citizens. As a part of the social contract, the Chinese and Indians accepted the special position of Malays as the indigenous people of Malaya. In those days, countries were not being constantly pressured by outside bodies like the United Nations or the mass media. The compassion of our kings and leaders shine through the fact that even without influences from those human rights activists, they gave the Chinese and Indians such an honour that they would hardly get elsewhere at the time.
Secondly, Islam is granted a special place in the Federal Constitution such as written in Article 3 (1): “Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.” This article clearly states that Malaysia is not a secular nation as the idea of secularism separates state from religion. In Karpal’s statement, he says that, “Perhaps the time has come for all racial and religious political parties and professional organisations which operated along racial and religious lines, to be de-registered.” To ban an organisation which operates along the religion of Islam simply because it is a ‘religious line’ is a clear offense against the Federal Constitution of Malaysia which is the supreme law of this country.
Thirdly, the presence of racial based political parties is not just to protect the special positions of the Malays but also to represent the Chinese and Indians of Malaysia. Although it is true that the government tries to be fair to all citizens of Malaysia, it is impossible for a person to fully understand the needs of another who conform to different cultures. By having different racial based parties under one coalition, it ensures that each of the representatives of the race has a say in the government. This system is also used in the United Nations where the representatives are not just a random blend of different people but to ensure fairness, each of the countries have their own delegates to represent the people of their nation.
And by the way, if this is Karpal’s stance, does it means that Karpal or the DAP wish for the Chinese and Indian schools to be disintegrated and for the children to study under the national curriculum like how it is done in Singapore? If so, had Pakatan Rakyat won the 13th General Elections, would DAP betray their Chinese and Indian supporters by abolishing the Chinese and Indian schools?
- Will PAS Obey To Karpal’s Order? (ahmadalikarim.wordpress.com)