Rising racial, religious rhetorics a cause for concern in Sabah

10 Dec 2022 06:26pm
Former Sabah Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) Leadership Body deputy, Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun - FILE PIX
Former Sabah Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) Leadership Body deputy, Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun - FILE PIX

KOTA KINABALU - The increase usage of racial and religious rhetoric by some parties in the Peninsula, particularly those spew during the 15th General Election (GE15), do not augur well with the scenario in Sabah and Sarawak.

Former Sabah Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) party deputy leader, Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun, said such was his decision to leave the party and to now focus on the Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS).

"Many people forget that the people of Sabah and Sarawak have family members of different religions.

"The Unity Government under Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim best represents the formation of an administration that includes the interests of all Malaysians, while protecting the position of Islam, bumiputera, Sabah and Sarawak.

"It is difficult for GRS or the people of Sabah to accept what is now being promoted as 'Islamic politics'," he said in a statement on Saturday.

Masidi who is also the Secretary General of GRS also thinks that no party can claim to be a genuine representative of Islam.

"I am a Muslim, I am proud of my religion, but I don't think any party can claim to be the authentic representative of this great religion.

"Islam is a universal religion that is inclusive and respects all faiths and cultures. It is a compassionate and humane religion that respects the rights of others including the rights of minorities.

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"The multi-ethnic and religious Sabahans have lived in harmony for centuries. Intermarriage is common. We are just simple Sabahans who want to protect our cultural and social heritage from being tainted by non-Sabahan values," he said.

Accordingly, he said, GRS will support any leader or coalition that is committed to preserving the Malaysian way of life that has a place for everyone.

"That is why we fully support the 10th Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim," he said.

Earlier today, Sabah Chief Minister who is also the former Head of the Bersatu Leadership Body, Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor announced the collapse of Bersatu Sabah as he, along with other party leaders decided to exit the party en mass.

The defections will not trigger the anti-hopping law as Sabah Bersatu leaders contested in GE15 under the GRS banner.

Moving forward, Hajiji said GRS will form a new local party.