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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Why did it take the IGP so long to speak up on religious tension, asks DAP

The primary task for the police is to restore the country's reputation as a land of peace and tolerance for all religions instead of being distracted by talk of a syariah unit or conducting price checks, said DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang (pic).
As such, the DAP supremo wondered why it took Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar so long to issue a stern warning to those responsible for inciting racial and religious hatred.
"As the nation's top policeman, Khalid should reflect and ask himself why has he been so remiss in carrying out his duties and responsibilities," Lim said in a statement today.
He was referring to a report in The Malaysian Insider on Wednesday, quoting a Pakistan website that "Malaysia is no longer land of peace and tolerance".
"This article is an indictment and a stain on the efficiency, professionalism and career of Khalid as the Inspector-General of Police."
Lim said the writer, Masood Khan, remarked that Malaysia used to be an island of peace and tolerance for the Muslim world.
"Sadly, it is no more as an evil eye has cast its bad shadow on a moderate and progressive country," Masood had written.
Lim said Khalid should always bear in mind that he is IGP for all Malaysians, not just for any one race or religion.
"Any divergence from this guiding principle amounts to criminal negligence of his high office," Lim added.
"While I welcome Khalid's warning to provocateurs, I wonder why it has taken him so long to wake up to the racial and religious provocations in Malaysia?"
"These small groups of irresponsible and reckless traitors are out to destabilise Malaysia and bring about a repeat of the May 13 racial conflict," he said.
Lim expressed hope that although Khalid had been late in reacting to the "Allah" issue, particularly the incidents in Penang, hopefully he could prevent any untoward occurrences.
"The main problem with the police is not the lack of manpower, it is the lack of political will and mandate to discharge their primary duty, which is internal security and public order.
"If the police were to send out a strong message by rounding up the troublemakers and traitors, this would do wonders for the rakyat's confidence," Lim said.
"Inciting racial and religious hatred based on lies and falsehoods is no laughing matter and the police should step in quickly."
On January 27, two Molotov cocktails were thrown into the compound of The Church of the Assumption in Lebuh Farquhar in Penang.
On Sunday, banners that read, “Allah is Great, Jesus is the son of Allah” were found hung outside several churches in Penang.
So far no one has come forward to claim responsibility for the banners, which sparked a flurry of police reports from church groups and political parties in the island state.
On Wednesday, Khalid told a press conference at Bukit Aman that there were no plans to set up a syariah police unit.
Khalid suggested that perhaps Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had misunderstood as the actual plan was to place policemen at Jakim on secondment.
Jakim, which is the Malaysian Islamic Development Department under the Prime Minister's Office, had previously said that there were plans to set up a police syariah unit.
The suggestion had originally been mooted by Ahmad Zahid, who said that Jakim needed police assistance in enforcing Islamic laws.
Ahmad Zahid was also the one who had suggested that police assist the Domestic Trade, Consumerism and Cooperatives Ministry in carrying out price checks.
MORE TO COME.

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