After the interview with The Malaysian Insider which was published on 11 July 2013 and Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Joseph Salvador Marino stated his support for Christian Federation of Malaysia’s quest to use ‘Allah’ in place of God, Malay NGOs reacted called for an apology or risk be expelled.
Tutup Kedutaan Vatican CityOleh SAIFULIZAM MOHAMAD
KUALA LUMPUR 13 Julai – Gabungan pertubuhan bukan kerajaan (NGO) Islam-Melayu yang sebelum ini mahu Duta Vatican City ke Malaysia, Biskop Joseph Marino diusir, hari ini mendesak kerajaan menutup pejabat kedutaannya di sini.
Tindakan tegas itu wajar kerana Marino melanggar had sebagai seorang duta sebagaimana peruntukan Konvensyen Vienna mengenai Hubungan Diplomatik 1961 kerana mencampuri urusan dalaman Malaysia dengan menyokong penggunaan kalimah Allah bagi penganut Kristian di negara ini.
Jurucakap gabungan NGO Islam-Melayu, Nasharudin Mat Isa berkata, Marino dengan sengaja serta berniat jahat membuat kenyataan yang boleh mengeruhkan hubungan Islam-Kristian di Malaysia sekali gus perlu memohon maaf kepada seluruh umat Islam di Malaysia.
“Kenyataannya yang bercanggah dengan pendirian rasmi kerajaan Malaysia merupakan perbuatan yang disengajakan, lebih-lebih lagi dalam bulan Ramadan.
“Kita menuntut Menteri Luar, Datuk Seri Anifah Aman memanggil Marino dan diberikan kata dua,” katanya dalam sidang akhbar di sini hari ini.
Semalam, NGO Islam-Melayu mendesak kerajaan mengusir Marino kerana menyokong penggunaan kalimah Allah bagi penganut Kristian di negara ini.
Gabungan tersebut mewakili beberapa NGO Melayu dan Islam antaranya Yayasan Nassar, Pertubuhan Jalur Tiga (Jati), Pertubuhan Muafakat Sejahtera Masyarakat Malaysia (Muafakat), Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (Isma).
Turut berada dalam gabungan itu adalah Gabungan Pertubuhan-Pertubuhan Pembela Islam (Pembela), Kelab Wartawan Muda Malaysia (KWMM), Persatuan Pengguna Islam Malaysia (PPIM), Pertubuhan Permuafakatan Majlis Ayahanda Malaysia dan Suara Anak Muda 1Malaysia.
Marino dalam wawancara pertamanya dengan sebuah portal berita di negara ini kelmarin menyokong pendirian gereja Katholik di Malaysia berhubung isu penggunaan kalimah Allah oleh penganut Kristian di negara ini.
Dalam perkembangan berkaitan, Nasharudin yang juga Pengerusi Yayasan Nassar percaya Marino seorang yang arif tentang Malaysia sesuai dengan pelantikannya sebagai Duta Vatican City ke negara ini.
“Saya juga percaya Marino amat mengetahui apa yang patut dan apa yang tidak boleh diperkatakan mengenai Malaysia dan sebagai tetamu negara berstatus duta, salah satu elemen terpenting, beliau sama sekali tidak dibenarkan mencampuri hal dalaman negara.
“Marino juga perlu menarik balik kenyataan tersebut dalam tempoh tujuh hari bermula semalam,” katanya.
Sementara itu, Timbalan Presiden Jati, Datuk Aidit Ghazali berkata, tindak-tanduk duta berkenaan boleh memberi ancaman serius kepada negara jika tidak dibendung kerajaan.
Beliau berkata, perkara itu berikutan kalimah Allah merupakan hak eksklusif dan isu paling sensitif bagi umat Islam di negara ini.
“Penekanan juga perlu dibuat bahawa isu ini bukan isu NGO semata-mata tetapi merupakan isu yang perlu dihadapi bersama setiap umat Islam di negara ini,” katanya.
Presiden Muafakat, Ismail Mina Ahmad pula berkata, Marino bukan seorang yang bijak selepas bertindak menyentuh urusan dalaman negara apatah lagi isu berkenaan masih di peringkat mahkamah.
“Kita faham kehadirannya ke sini akan memantapkan lagi persefahaman antara Islam dan Kristian, tetapi apa yang berlaku adalah sebaliknya.
“Saya teringat firman Allah di dalam surah al-Baqarah ayat 120 yang bermaksud ‘Dan orang-orang Yahudi dan Nasrani selama-lamanya tidak akan reda kepada kamu sehinggalah kamu mengikut agama mereka’,” katanya.
Artikel Penuh: http://www.utusan.com.my/utusan/Dalam_Negeri/20130714/dn_04/Tutup-Kedutaan-Vatican-City#ixzz2YwwNDN2t
© Utusan Melayu (M) BhdBishop calls for Najib to take stand against Perkasa, Jati
Even Minister in Prime Minister’s Department and in-charge of Islamic Affairs Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Dato’ Paduka Jamil Khir Baharom remarked that Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Marino was out of line and should have observed the borders of sensitivity in this country:
Jamil Khir says Vatican envoy’s remarks can cause disunity
JULY 13, 2013
Vatican City Ambassador to Malaysia Archbishop Joseph Marino should not have issued the statement on the use of the word ‘Allah’ as it has created anxiety among the public and can threaten unity among Malaysians, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom said.
He said such a statement should not be made by any quarters to respect the sensitivity of Muslims in the country.
“The religious tolerance in this country should be taken into account by all quarters when issuing statements that could be interpreted as disrupting racial harmony in Malaysia,” he said in a statement today.
He said the National Fatwa Council had issued a ruling that the word “Allah” was specially for use by Muslims in the country and should not be abused by any quarters.
“I advise all quarters to not make a polemic of the issue on the word Allah until a decision is made by the court,” he added.
A coalition of Malay Muslims non-governmental organisations had yesterday called on the government to “chase away” the ambassador for issuing the statement. – Bernama, July 13, 2013
It is a serious matter because HE Archbishop Marino’s statement should be seen as insulting HRH Rulers, who are absolute head of Islam and already made decree that “Non Muslims are barred from using the ‘Allah’ in place of God and the word is sacred and exclusive to Muslims only”. This decree is based on the fatwa by the National Fatwa Council.
Even PAS Ulamaks agreed that HE Archbishop Marino “Has no business to speak on matters which may affect the sensitivity of Muslims”.
Instead, Malaysian Church leaders demonstrated that they failed to be Malaysians and adhere to the Federal Constitution and State Constitution where position of Islam as the religion of the Federation of Malaysia and position and role HRH Rulers are clearly provided.
They continue to show their insensitivity and arrogance if not disobedience as citizens by calling that HE Archbishop Marino should not apologise but instead Prime Minister Dato’ Sri Mohd. Najib Tun Razak to take a stand against Malay NGOs like PERKASA and JATI.
The Malaysian Insider story:
BY ELIZABETH ZACHARIAH
JULY 13, 2013
Najib, seen here at a Christmas party last year, must stand up to the extreme comments from groups like Perkasa and Jati, say local Christian leaders. The Malaysian Insider pic,
July 13, 2013. Christians have had enough of the bashing from the likes of Perkasa and other Malay rights groups. They expect Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak to intervene and “do the right thing” by rejecting such extremism.
This was the stand of the president of the Council of Churches Malaysia, Bishop Philip Lok. He was speaking to The Malaysian Insider in the wake of the demands by Perkasa and Jati that the Vatican’s envoy Archbishop Joseph Marino withdraw his support for the local church’s campaign to use the word Allah and that he must apologise within seven days.
The vocal rights groups have demanded that the government shut down the Vatican’s embassy and banish Marino if he does not apologise.
They were reacting to the Archbishop’s comments in an interview with local media that though he recognised that the ongoing court case on the Allah issue was an internal matter, he supported the position taken by the Christian Federation of Malaysia that Allah was a word for god in the Christian religion too.
Bishop Lok said that it was time the government took action against Perkasa and Jati for trying to disrupt diplomatic ties between Malaysia and the Vatican.
“We appreciate that two years ago the Prime Minister had established ties with the Vatican. He has worked hard for that. Does he want to jeopardise the good relationship that he has fostered with them over the years?” he asked.
He urged Najib to do the “right thing and reject extremism”.
“He should put an end to this and not succumb to their demands. The people of Malaysia have had enough of this.”
Referring to the rights groups, he added: “They have been saying all sorts of things against the Christians, in particular. This is no different.
“But the Government is not seen to be taking any action against these people who have been causing religious tension in the country.”
He added that the Prime Minister must ensure that his promise of national reconciliation not just remain words.
The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) deputy president Jagir Singh said Marino had no reason to retract his statement as he was speaking the truth.
Referring to the calls for a retraction, Mr Singh said: “It is not fair to ask him to do that. It is his right. The Archbishop’s stand is correct.”
Catholic Bishop Paul Tan said that he was shocked at the reaction of the two Malay rights NGOs, noting that the Vatican envoy’s remarks “should not be seen as an interference in Malaysia’s internal affairs any more than the demand at some embassies in Kuala
Lumpur recently that our government reject the goings-on in Egypt and Syria constitutes interference in those nations’ affairs’’.
The head of the Catholic Church in the Malacca-Johor diocese described Perkasa and Jati’s demands as “gimmicky sabre-rattling”.
He told Malaysiakini: “Rash talk is cheap especially on the part of those who do not have the responsibility.
“Former Plantation Industries and Commodities minister Tan Sri Bernard Dompok said Perkasa has gone way too far in their demand.
“To ask an ambassador to leave… that is just unbelievable.
“Groups in this country have also commented on what happens in other countries. I don’t see what’s wrong,” he added.
However, Dompok was certain that the statements by Jati and Perkasa would not affect the relationshi[p between Malaysia and the Vatican.
“I believe the ties between both sovereign countries are stronger than this,” he said. – July 13, 2013
This is not a surprise because Church leaders, which include the Roman Catholic Church have been very political. One of the more stinging one is Bishop Paul Tan. He also tried to make the 5 May 2013 polling day as a political controversy. These are some of the clear examples that the Roman Catholic Church has become a political organ instead of a house of worship.
The fact is that Malay NGOs PERKASA, JATI, PPIM, MUAFAKAT, ISMA and others which include individuals in the likes of retired Court of Appeal Judge Dato’ Mohd. Noor Abdullah and retired Director General of Education Dato’ Wira Abdul Rahman Arshad are standing up for what ever have been provided and principled in the Federal Constitution. Nothing more.
Neither are any of them are anti-Christians now nor ever have been.
Unless proven, Malay NGOs in the likes of PERKASA, JATI, PPIM and MUAFAKAT have never been pre-emptive nor provocative on sensitive issues pertaining their stance on Islam, HRH Rulers and position and interests of the Malays. Their reaction on provocations and/or challenges are often manipulated as the aggressors and the minority they represented then conveniently be pictured as ‘victims’ and/or ‘minority under majority oppression’.
In short, these Malay NGOs are just exercising the demand for “Constitutional obligation to defend the position of Islam”.
Position and roles of HRH Rulers and Islam as the religion of the Federation of Malaysia are underlying fundamentals for the birth of this nation and utmost important provisions in the Federal Constitution. These, along other provisions such as Special Malay Rights and Malay as national language are some the articles provided in the Federation of Malaya Treaty which was inked on 21 January 1948 between HRH Rulers and the British Government. The treaty became the basis when the Federal Constitution was drafted.
There was no provision for the allowance of religion other than Islam in that treaty. For a matter of fact, only the Malays were recognised as “Subjects of HRH Rulers”.
At the dawn of the formation of Federation of Malaya, HRH Rulers agreed to compromise based on the conditions as per provided in the Federation of Malaya Treaty on the principle of admission of Non Malays as citizens. Almost 1 million Non Malays, mostly would not have qualified to be citizens were admitted as equals and accorded with rights in the new born nation and member of the Commonwealth.
Hence, the religion of the Non Malays are allowed to be practiced as long as it does not contravene and/or encroached into the interests and position of Islam as the religion of the Federation of Malaya (Now Malaysia). These are the basis of the ‘Social Contract’ which many especially the Non Malays today are trying to deny for its spirit and decisions made.
The rights of the Non Malays as citizens then or now are not carte blanche, where they are free to say or demand anything. Especially on ‘special’ matters such as position and interest of Islam as the religion as the Federation of Malaysia. Overstepping these boundaries would just invite trouble and Malay NGOs such as PERKASA, JATI etc. exist for this purpose.
What HE Archbishop Marino did was totally out of line as his role in the capacity of Apostolic Nuncio. It cannot be considered as faux pas because he is seasoned diplomat. He insulted HRH Sultan Selangor’s decree, the fatwa made by National Fatwa Council and disrespect a case where the matter is being the process of appeal in the Malaysian courts system.
What HE Archbishop Marino did was totally out of line as his role in the capacity of Apostolic Nuncio. He insulted HRH Sultan Selangor’s decree, the fatwa made by National Fatwa Council and disrespect a case where the matter is being the process of appeal in the Malaysian courts system.
Unless, HE Archbishop Marino consciously utter the support as part of a sinister political agenda. This should also include that the Vatican is indirectly if not very supportive the agenda of protelysation of Malay-Muslims in Malaysia.
It is time for Prime Minister Najib to demonstrate whether he is a man of principle or prefer to pander to popularism, especially to the different groups ungrateful and disobedient minority with the same sinister agenda.
*Footnote: The title means “Virtue of being principled”
*Updated 0100hrs 15 July 2013
Foreign Minister Dato’ Seri Anifah Aman said that Malaysia is displeased with Apostolic Nuncio Archbishop Joseph Salvador Marino’s statement on the ‘Kalimah Allah’ issue, which the former describe as “Foreign interference into internal affairs”.