PM, other leaders condemn arson attacks
PUTRAJAYA: Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak has condemned the attacks made on three churches in the Klang Valley but has asked the public not to start pointing fingers at who may have been responsible for the attacks.
The Prime Minister said he viewed the matter seriously as these actions could jeopardise harmony, adding that the Government would take all possible action to prevent such incident from recurring.
At the same time, Najib had directed the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Musa Hassan to beef up security and surveillance at places of worship.
“We must not allow the peace and the understanding that we have among Malaysians of various ethnic backgrounds and faiths be threatened by anyone or any parties.
“As I have said before, whatever problems that arise, we must use the right channel and method to solve it. Our action must not be against the law as this can jeapordise harmony,” he told reporters after chairing the fourth Northern Corridor Implementation Authority (NCIA) on Friday.
Also present were Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and Chief Secterary to the Government Tan Sri Sidek Hassan.
Umno Youth head Khairy Jamaluddin at the Tabernacle Church in Desa Melawati on Friday
Najib also reminded the public not to point fingers on who the perpetrators behind the church attacks were but should allow the authorities to conduct a thorough investigation into the matter.
“Action will be taken against those responsible based on facts and the law,” he said.
Asked if there were fears of retaliation due to the incident, the Prime Minister said the authorities must nip the problem in the bud.
“I hope with statements and action taken by the police, people will not take law into their hands. The IGP will report to me on the incident once there are evidence and new developments,” he added.
MCA vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen at the Metro Tabernacle Church in Desa Melawati on Friday.
Other public figures have come out to condemn the arson attacks against the two churches.
Urging all parties to remain calm, they also asked for swift police action to ensure the situation does not get out of control.
In the meantime, the MCA is offering the Metro Tabernacle Church the use of its hall at Wisma MCA for its services this Sunday, vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen said.
The MCA, through its religious bureaus, will find an immediate place for the Metro Tabernacle to relocate, she said.
“This is the act of a very small group of Malaysians. We need to come together and work against any form of violence.
“Do not leave it to the Government or the police alone; the rakyat (people) must come together and stand up for each other,” she said.
Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim, who was at the Assumption Church, condemned the attack, describing it as a cowardly act.
“I urge the police to give protection to all churches and conduct a thorough investigation on the attack on the Assumption Church,” he added.
Khalid also said that he was grateful to the church auuthorities, who had given their reassurance that they would not react to the arson attack.
“I appeal to the people in Selangor to refrain from any further such action, which will only cause further trouble for all people,” he added.
Umno Youth Chief Khairy Jamaluddin said it was a dark day for Malaysia.
"This is a despicable act. This is not the Malaysia I know," said Khairy, who visited the Metro Tabernacle Church in Desa Melawait in Kuala Lumpur, which was attacked by arsonists early Friday.
He urged the police to act swiftly.
Saying that Barisan Nasional Youth strongly condemned the action, Khairy Jamaluddin added that whatever the feelings of anyone on the issue of the usage of the word “Allah” in the Herald, the irresponsible action of those who destroy places of worship should not be defended by Muslims.
“If Muslims are responsible for this incident, they should be ashamed and remorseful because clearly Islam advises Muslims to respect other religious beliefs.
“Malaysia is a multiracial country. There will be arguments and misunderstandings over issues which touch on race and religion.
“What is important is the people should resolve any problems with maturity and respect for each other’s sensitivity,” he said in a statement.
Selangor PAS termed the arson attacks as cowardly acts.
“We view the news of the attacks on churches, including in Selangor, with sadness and regret. Such attacks have never happened in our country and they do not at all reflect our culture, tradition or the religious beliefs of Malaysians.
“Selangor PAS sympathises with the affected churches and urges all PAS members in the state to remain calm and patient and pray for the safety of all,” its state Information chief Roslan Shahir Mohd Shahir said in a statement.
Social activist Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir said it was very important for all Muslim Malaysians to condemn the act whole-heartedly.
"This is not what Islam is about. The leadership must play its role and come out and tell the people not to condemn houses of worship," she told reporters at the church site.
Veteran DAP leader Lim Kit Siang said all political party leaders should take a common stand to condemn the attacks.
They should condemn “in the strongest possible terms the spate of church attacks in the wake of the ‘Allah’ controversy and ensure that there is no further escalation.
“As Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should immediately impress on the Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein to take all urgent and necessary measures to protect the good name of the country or be held responsible for any undesirable consequences,” he said.
Wangsa Maju Member of Parliament Wee Choo Keong said he was very shocked.
“The Prime Minister and Inspector-General of Police mus take immediate action to protect all places of worship regardless of their religion.
“We do not want to inflame the present tensions in the country or the country’s unity will be set back many years -- this is a test for the Prime Minister and his 1Malaysia vision,” he said.
tunku : WE STRONGLY CONDEMN THIS STUPID AND COWARD ACT BY SOME MORONS.we demand the government to take fast action on this matter and do not delay in the investigation. the police must really get down to it and find those culprits involved in it.these people should be charged under the ISA for national security.we do not want such incident to happen in Malaysia. what we can see here is clearly some people taking advantage of the current issue to achieve their personal agenda. they are using this to create tense so the government won't be stable.we want police to get them asap.