Dr M is right, Perkasa exists because of non-Malay ‘extremists’, Ibrahim Ali says


(Malay Mail Online) – Datuk Ibrahim Ali agreed today with Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s claim that Perkasa was only formed because non-Malays began questioning Malay rights and privileges, and the sanctity of the royal institution.

In a statement to thank Dr Mahathir for supporting Perkasa, the controversial Malay rights leader said the former prime minister had accurately explained the objective behind the group’s existence.

“It is true what Tun M said that Perkasa was born as a result of the existence of extremist and racist non-Malay groups, whether political parties, non-governmental organisations or even those on social media… who have openly insulted Islam, the Malay rulers, mocked the Malays and threatened national security,” he said, specifically citing street demonstrations organised by polls watchdog Bersih 2.0 as examples.

“They do this in the name of human rights and democracy. But when Perkasa retaliates, they attack us, labelling us racists and extremists,” he complained.

The former Pasir Mas MP said, however, that Perkasa will not allow itself to be cowed into submission by its critics, saying the group will soldier on in its fight to protect the welfare of Muslims and Islam.

He named Dr Mahathir as Perkasa’s driving force and inspiration, adding that he was “deeply moved” by the veteran leader’s proclaimed support for the Malay rights group.

“It is very meaningful, especially coming from such a celebrated statesman whose views we all respect as firm and straightforward,” Ibrahim said.

Yesterday, Dr Mahathir voiced his support for Perkasa’s views after a news report claimed that he had parted ways with the group as he had grown “uneasy” with its direction.

In a blog post, the former Umno president explained that he could not “part ways” with Perkasa as he never had any formal affiliations with it.

His only link to Perkasa, the influential former Umno president said, is that he “may” have shared some of his ideas with the group in the past, and that some of his thoughts may have coincided with theirs.

“For starters I am not formally attached to them,” Dr Mahathir wrote. “However, I must admit that I do support their views.

“Especially when it comes to reacting against extremist views of the non-Malays.”

Dr Mahathir, who was Malaysia’s longest serving prime minister, said during his 22-year tenure in office, groups like Perkasa never existed.

Perkasa’s birth, he added, was due to the rise in “extremist views among the non-Malays” who he said have openly questioned Malay rights and privileges.

News portal The Malaysian Insider reported yesterday that Dr Mahathir had parted ways with Perkasa as he was unhappy with how the group caused and handled racial issues, including a call to burn Bibles.

The Malaysian Insider also reported that Dr Mahathir scolded Perkasa last November during their meeting and had claimed to be unwell to explain his absence at Perkasa’s annual general meeting (AGM) when he was in fact unhappy with the group.

Last October, Dr Mahathir defended the authorities’ decision not to prosecute Ibrahim’s 2013 call to burn bibles, saying that the latter’s advice was “acceptable to Muslims” and did not intend to provoke clashes between Muslims and non-Muslims.

Dr Mahathir, who had featured prominently in Perkasa events, said that it was an acceptable practice to burn old copies of Quran, adding that prohibitions against disrespecting the Muslim holy book should be extended to the holy texts of other religions.