Friday, March 27, 2015
Sarawak Minister Hits Out At Miri Community FB Page Over Forced Conversion Claims
Welfare, Women and Family Development Minister Datuk Fatimah Abdullah said individuals who posted the incident at the Miri Community should be held responsible as the posting did not tell the whole picture of the story.
"Instead it was biased and could incite religious tension and could destroy the harmony that had long existed in Sarawak," she said.
"First and foremost, the girl was never forced to convert to Islam, she is still a Christian, she voluntarily came to meet the teachers concerned to express her interest in Islam before the one-week school holiday started recently," she told reporters after chairing an emergency meeting with the girl, her parents and teachers here Friday.
Fatimah, who is in charge of education affairs in the state, said the teachers had repeatedly asked whether her intention was genuine and the girl gave a positive reply without anyone influencing or forcing her to convert.
"The only mistake the teachers had made was they never consulted the biological parents of the girl since she was being take care of by her grandfather," she said.
She said the girl even confessed that she had met the teachers voluntary and expressed her interest in Islam.
Fatimah also denied the accusation made by individuals through the Miri Community page claiming that the teachers concerned had "a long list of students and target to be converted to Islam" in selected areas here.
The controversy arose when pictures of a letter of complaint to the principal against the teacher concerned and a copy of a police report were posted to the Miri Community, a community-based Facebook page for sharing information in Miri City, alleging that the teachers had forced the girl to convert.
The picture went viral immediately with many sharing the photo of the complaint letters and police report that prompted the opposition PKR here to take necessary action.