Tuesday, December 27, 2011
The authorities must charge those who question Article 153 of the Constitution like Christian leader Rev Dr Eu Hong Seng with sedition to safeguard national security, Datuk Ibrahim Ali said today.
“We demand the government use the Sedition Act on anyone who makes statements like this from now on and charge them in court,” the Perkasa chief told reporters today.
He was referring to a statement made on Saturday by National Evangelical Christian Fellowship (NECF) chairman Eu, who likened Article 153 to “bullying” for only protecting the rights of one group.
Article 153 states that it is the King's responsibility “to safeguard the special position of the Malays and natives of any of the States of Sabah and Sarawak and the legitimate interests of other communities in accordance with the provisions of this Article”.
Calling Eu’s statement “irresponsible provocation”, Ibrahim said use of the Sedition Act would deter further attempts to question the provision and preserve racial harmony.
Disputing the article would only lead to civil strife as it was part and parcel of an established social contract that could not be amended without consent from the Malay Rulers, he said.
The Malay rights leader also cautioned Christians against repeating statements similar to Eu’s in light of past controversies like the Damansara Utama Methodist Church (DUMC) raid, as this would only give the impression that Christians wished to make enemies of Muslims.
“We’re only upholding what’s in the Federal Constitution... Please don’t keep provoking us on and on because it’s not good for the country. And we have been patient for so long,” he said.
Ibrahim (picture) added that Perkasa might lodge a police report against Eu on Thursday to help protect Article 153.
Amid growing debate, opposition leaders claimed today that the article has been manipulated by ruling Malay party Umno and is now being used as “a weapon of aggression”.
Constitutional expert Prof Abdul Aziz Bari had said earlier that Article 153 meant the King must ensure safeguarding Bumiputera rights did not come at the expense of the legitimate interests of other communities.
Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyddin Yassin denied today that the provision has been used to bully any community.