Sunday, May 8, 2011

DAP wants Utusan probed for sedition, criminal defamation

Source: (By Shazwan Mustafa Kamal, 8/5/2011)

KUALA LUMPUR, May 8 — The DAP wants the police to investigate Utusan Malaysia over its report of a Christian plot to usurp Islam’s position, which the party has labelled as “seditious” and “defamatory.”

DAP MP Lim Lip Eng said the “defamatory lies” created by Utusan in claiming the party was conspiring with Christian leaders to take over Putrajya and abolish Islam as the country’s official religion prompted him to lodge a police report today. “Either the DAP and Christian leaders are trying to create a Malaysian Christian state, or Utusan editors and bloggers are lying, the Attorney-General has to decide,” he told The Malaysian Insider, reading out the contents of the police report lodged at the Sentul police station this morning. “I want the matter investigated under the Sedition Act, Penal Code, and Printing Presses and Publications Act (PPPA).

“The DAP has denied the allegations. They are lies,” the Segambut MP added. When asked whether the DAP would take legal action against the Umno-owned daily or the bloggers, Lim said he would leave the matter for the party to decide.

Utusan carried a front-page article yesterday titled “Malaysia, a Christian country?” (Malaysia, negara Kristian?) based entirely on blog postings by several pro-Umno bloggers. The bloggers had charged the DAP with sedition for allegedly trying to change the country’s laws to allow a Christian prime minister, pointing to a grainy photograph showing what they described as a secret pact between the opposition party and pastors at a hotel in Penang on Wednesday. In a posting headlined “Agong under threat? DAP wants to make Christianity the official religion of Malaysia?” blogger Marahku ( accused the DAP of trying to amend the Federal Constitution so that a Christian could assume the post of prime minister. “The whole point of changing the official religion is to allow a Christian to become prime minister of this country,” the blogger said. On, another blogger claimed to have received a message that DAP’s Jeff Ooi had organised a dinner for pastors from both Sarawak and abroad at Red Rock Hotel on Jalan Macalister, Penang. “Among the activities that night included the 35 pastors taking a group oath. They formed a circle and touched each other’s shoulders and vowed in English to make Christianity the official religion of Malaysia and put a Christian prime minister in office,” the anonymous writer said in his blog under the headline “Making Christianity the official religion?” He also pointed to the same grainy picture he posted at the top of his blog page, which he had captioned “Partying pastors or pastors doing the party do and vowing to have a Christian as Malaysian prime minister”. The blogger further alleged that the DAP had labelled the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition as an “anti-Christ agent” in the run-up to polls in Sarawak, showing the opposition party was “openly against BN on religious grounds and they are now making it their clarion call, their rabble rousing horn”. He said it was a seditious and religiously divisive statement that was never investigated by the police “or at least they did not tell us about any investigations into the matter”. The blogger called on the authorities to investigate the allegations of sedition, warning that if the authorities failed in their duty the country may be “shattered again”.

The National Evangelical Christian Fellowship (NECF), together with partners Global Day of Prayer, Marketplace Penang and Penang Pastors Fellowship, said the claims against their community were lies, and refuted the bloggers’ allegations last night.

Similarly, Ooi said the dinner had been organised by the Christian pastors in recognition of the DAP team who had visited them while in Sarawak for the state election and that the prayer sessions — one before dinner and one at the end — were a usual part of their worship, and not a pledge as alleged.

No comments: