Perkasa slams Helen Ang for ‘insulting Agong’

By Boo Su-Lyn, The Malaysian Insider

Malay right-wing group Perkasa today accused Centre for Policy Initiatives (CPI) columnist Helen Ang of insulting the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and inciting hatred against the special position of the Malays.

Wira Perkasa youth chief Arman Azha Haji Abu Hanifah claimed that Ang’s article, “Enforcing NEP on minority religions”, posted on August 4 in the Centre for Policy Initiatives (CPI) website was seditious as it questioned the special position of Islam and Malays in the country.

“The writer (Ang) cockily insulted the Yang di-Pertuan Agong besides trying to create feelings of dislike against him,” Arman told reporters today at the Sentul police station.

“In our opinion, the article’s contents can divide the races in this country besides threatening national security as it is seditious and creates an atmosphere of tension,” added Arman.

The Perkasa youth chief said that Ang’s act of questioning Islamic rights was tantamount to questioning the Agong as he is the head of the religion in the country.

“She is questioning the powers of the Agong,” said Arman.

When asked how exactly Ang did so, Arman pointed out that the writer had questioned the act of Muslim prayers in schools, honing in on her statement which said “In some schools, doa (Muslim prayer) is recited weekly during assembly. However, if a Christian, Hindu, Sikh or Buddhist prayer were ever recited in a gathering where Malay pupils are present, there will be uproar.”

“Islam is the official religion (in this country). She is questioning the Constitution. ‘Doa’ is part of our culture,” said Arman.

When asked if Perkasa agreed to prayers of other religions being recited in school assemblies, Arman said: “In a formal ceremony, there should be a Muslim prayer. If it is not an official assembly, we do not mind other prayers.”

Perkasa has been at the forefront of defending the “social contract,” lambasting politicians and media alike for purportedly questioning Malay special rights or the royal institution.

The organisation’s chief, Datuk Ibrahim Ali, yesterday declared that the NGO will contribute to MCA’s defeat in the next general election if its president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek continues to “insult Islam”.

Ibrahim had lashed out at Dr Chua for claiming that Umno and PAS had been using religion to compete for Malay votes. The MCA president drew further fire for saying Malaysia was not progressing because of Islam and that some of the most corrupted countries are Muslim-majority nations.