Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Merdeka Statement Condemned

42 non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in Malaysia have jointly issued an eight-point declaration, launched on 2 Aug, calling for concerted efforts to keep the peace as reported in Straits Times, 4 Aug. This declaration was led by Centre for Public Policy Studies. The declaration was known as the Merdeka Statement [Merdeka (malay language) = Independence] (shorter statement here).

But .... but ...... but .... Malaysia's Information Minister Zainuddin Maidin said that racial harmony was in order and not under any threat. The Minister interpreted the statement as a list of things that were not right in Malaysia and that this wish list was only agreed by a handful of people and do not represent Malaysia as a whole. He also stated that the statement was uncalled for.

Both Allied Co-ordinating Committee of Islamic NGOs and Muslim Youth Movement (Pembela) objected against the Merdeka Statement stating that it has different agendas which were not in line with the Malaysian Constitution. Their statement in Bahasa Malaysia here. Why so sensitive lately?

To see whether a large majority of the Malaysians have voiced out in favour for the Merdeka Statement, you must see some of the NGOs that had participated:-
* Centre for Public Policy Studies - independent think-tank body;
* Malaysian Bar Council - where all Malaysian lawyers are registered with;
* Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism - I think this national inter-faith body represented the country's main religions; and
* Sisters of Islam - name says it all.

Tags: Merdeka Statement, Independence, Non-Governmental Organisation, NGO, Malaysia, Centre for Public Policy Studies, Malaysian Bar Council, Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism, Sisters of Islam, Zainuddin Maidin, Freedom of Religion, Allied Co-ordinating Committee of Islamic NGOs, Muslim Youth Movement, Pembela

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