Stop Dr M before he burns M’sia, says Bishop

The vocal Bishop Paul Tan wants the government to act against the former premier and all those who stoke racial and religious tension. 

RK Anand, FMT

Once the object of love and veneration but now hate and denigration, Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s constant outbursts have made him one of the most criticised individuals in this nation.

And even on Valentine’s Day, it is brickbats and not bouquets for the former premier.

Ironically, Mahathir who threw scores of people behind bars without trial on the basis of national security is now considered to be a threat himself.

And his unrestrained remarks on sensitive issues had earned him the wrath of a vocal senior clergyman as well.

Speaking to FMT, Bishop Paul Tan urged the government to take stern action against Mahathir and all those who stoke the flames of racial and religious tension.

The action, he stressed, was vital so that these persons’ “evil oil does not flow to others ending in engulfing Malaysia in flames”.

Similarly, he said the law must come down hard on Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali and others who called or supported the burning of Christian Bibles containing the word Allah.

“Action must be taken against those who for political expediency accuse Christians of trying to make Malaysia a Christian country and those who make false accusations against any ethnic group without concrete proof to enflame the already tedious and fragile fabric texture of the Malaysian society.

“It is my conviction that all precautions must be taken to ensure that racial or religious riots do not break out in Malaysia.

“If a person representing a party fans the already simmering ember of racial and religious tension in Malaysia, vigorous and strong action should be taken against him or her,” he added.

Vote for the clean and upright

With the 13th general election looming, Tan, 72, called on the Christian electorate to cast their ballots with wisdom and to forgive those who had wronged them in the past.

“Vote in any person whose track records prove that he/she is clean, upright,transparent and who courageously stands up for justice for all and works effectively for the good of all citizens, even the most discriminated against – the Orang Asli, the poor Malays in the kampungs, the downtrodden Indians in the estates, etc.

“We should not forget either our ‘modern slaves’, the migrant workers, who are being ruthlessly exploited, although they contribute to the building of our country,” he added.

Tan said that whichever party took over the federal leadership, be it Barisan Nasional or Pakatan Rakyat, it must protect all citizens.

“It must be clean from any corruption even if it is legally done, for example, the government dolling out money to win votes; equitable, transparent and upright. It is for these reasons that I fully support any protest for a just, clean and fair election, for example, Bersih’s call.

“Although I have not taken any partisan side in saying what I have said, I cannot not take a moral, religious and political stand for justice, cleanliness, equity and fairness. The Vatican would be happy that I dare speak out the truth, without taking any political side,” he added.