DAP planning the second phase of the “Defend Secular Malaysia” campaign to add “people’s mobilization” to the first phase of “people’s awareness” to uphold the 46-year constitutional principle supported by the first three Prime Ministers that Malaysia is a democratic, secular and multi-religious nation with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic state
- at Bayan Baru, Penang on the DAP’s 46th National Day Celebrations/Defend Secular Malaysia campaign
by Lim Kit Siang
(Penang, Saturday): Yesterday, while visiting Rifle Range during the DAP’s 46th National Day Celebrations-cum-Defend Secular Malaysia campaign, I met a resident who is very well-informed about national and international developments as he pointed out to me that Indonesia, with the largest Muslim population in the world of over 200 million Muslims, is not an Islamic state but is a secular republic.
However, he is very pessimistic about the nation’s prospects, as he said that Malaysia has become an Islamic state and there is no way this could be changed.
I agree with this well-informed Malaysian that there is a vast distinction between Islam and Islamic State, that one is not anti-Islam when one opposes the Islamic State concept, which is why the majority of the 1.2 billion Muslims in the world live under secular governments and not in Islamic state systems. This is also why the overwhelming majority of the 57 member-nations of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC), for which Malaysia is hosting the 10th OIC Summit next month as the capping-stone event to climax the 22-year premiership of Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, are secular and not Islamic States.
However, I do not agree with him that Malaysia has already embarked on the road towards an Islamic State or that there is no way to stop this development.
Whether Malaysia abandons its 46-year fundamental constitutional principle and nation-building cornerstone as a democratic, secular and multi-religious nation with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic State, which is supported by the first three Prime Ministers of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak and Tun Hussein Onn, is a decision that could only be made by the people and voters of Malaysia. No single individual including Mahathir and no political grouping or party including the 14-party Barisan Nasional or PAS can make this crucial and critical decision with far-reaching consequences for the rights of future generations.
This is why the DAP has launched the “Love Malaysia, Defend Secular Malaysia” movement, starting with the first phase of a national public awareness campaign in Penang which will be taken to all the other states. DAP is now planning the second phase of the “Defend Secular Malaysia” campaign to add “people’s mobilization” to the first phase of “people’s awareness” – to let every Malaysian know that the decision whether Malaysia should become an Islamic State is entirely in their hands.
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman