Nik Muhammad Zawawi, Pasir Putih MP
Nik Muhammad Zawawi, Pasir Putih MP

While PAS leaders aren’t exactly known for their oratory skills or respect towards non Muslims, this minister definitely takes the halal cake. Nik Muhammad Zawawi claimed at Dewan Rakyat that the Holy Bible has been distorted and changed.

One would have been mistaken to think that Nik Muhammad had somehow became a Bible expert overnight perhaps with some dubious fake qualifications rampant with Pakatan Harapan previously but there he was saying things beyond his depth of knowledge while holding office. 

The response to his idiotic statement was swift. Sabahan leaders demanded that the Pasir Putih MP to be put in his place. “Sabahan Christians can do is to demand for Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS), Parti Solidariti Tanah Air (Star) and Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) to pressure their political allies, Umno and Pas, to correct the situation.” A large percentage of Sabahan Bumiputra are Christians and did not take well to the comments. 

Raja Petra Kamaruddin (RPK), the infamous blogger, not to be outdone in the stupidity department solely blamed the situation on DAP for making a police report on Nik Muhammad in his blog comments. RPK is a well known supporter of the hail and brimstone PAS politicians. RPK also claimed majority of the drink driving victims are Malays and Muslims. 

United Progressive Kinabalu Organisation (UPKO) deputy president Datuk Donald Mojuntin, who described Nik Zawawi’s recent statement as being against Malaysia’s multi-religious and multi-cultural fabric. “I condemn any acts which disrupt unity. UPKO condemns this ‘holier-than-thou’ attitude, and we cannot tolerate bigotry.

“Respecting one another, living in harmony must be our routine norm in life,” said the senator in a separate statement, while urging Nik Muhammad to retract his statement.

While Nik Muhammad claimed that he studied comparative religion, there is no evidence any comparing was ever done by the minister. PAS politicians live and die by firebrand politics play to their hardline Islamist supporters. 

With a looming federal election that could be as early as end of the year, comments such as Nik Muhammad isn’t winning any favours. One Christian political observer who declined to be named stated “this pretty much shows much disrespect towards Christians and our bible. Everyone knows that the Quran and Hadith were compiled decades after the death of the Prophet Muhammad. Do we go around claiming it’s altered ? We respect Muslims and their view but it goes both ways. Politicians such as Nik Muhammad don’t understand that. It’s our religion and our Bible. His rights begin and end with Islam and Al Quran. He should know his bounds.”

The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) said Pasir Puteh MP Nik Muhammad Zawawi Salleh’s comments crossed the line of bigotry as he had stereotyped the religion.

His remarks have brought protests from politicians in Sabah and Sarawak, and a Sarawak archbishop who called for a retraction and an apology. A sedition report was also filed against Zawawi in Kuching.

Other citizens where more understanding. “This is not the first time PAS ministers have disrespected people and it won’t be the last. They live in their own pretend bubble and many don’t have the respect for fellow Malaysians and even the legal systems of Malaysia. We don’t hold our breath of him being reprimanded.”

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