Friday, December 29, 2023

Don't shoot down intellectual discourse, Ti tells Umno

Don't shoot down intellectual discourse, Ti tells Umno

A former deputy minister has urged Umno to engage in intellectual discourse over the proposal to appoint non-Muslim constitutional experts to the committee reviewing the jurisdiction of syariah courts as per the Federal Constitution.

Ti Lian Ker said this should be done in the spirit of a diverse nation.

"We should continue to engage in conversations, practice intellectual discourse, and embrace inclusivity.

"Some politicians are stirring up controversy of late, changing the conversation and distorting what was said or discussed to create controversy. This trend of inciting anger and shouting down on intellectual discourse is the real danger and threat to the country," Ti (above) told Malaysiakini in a statement.

He was responding to Umno secretary-general Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki's criticism of DAP lawmaker Ngeh Koo Ham's proposal to appoint non-Muslim constitutional experts to the syariah courts committee.

In saying so, Asyraf claimed that Ngeh's proposal is not "rooted in reality" and is also capable of stirring unwanted controversy in the multiracial country.

Positives and negatives

Elaborating, Ti said the "reality" is that Malaysia was founded based on tolerance in the spirit of pluralism.

"Thereafter, politicians changed the course of the nation towards one race, one language, and one nation, or ‘satu bangsa, satu bahasa dan satu negara’ back in the 70s.

"⁠In the 80s and 90s, Islam politics prevailed and politicians rode on religion, whereby Umno tried to outdo PAS and there were many positive developments such as the International Islamic University, Bank Islam, and so on. But there were also some negatives as a result of over-enthusiasm and radicalism," Ti said.

He added that in the spirit of inclusivity and diversity, Malaysians must cultivate space for factual discussion towards a meeting of minds of all and avoid the political tendency of domination in the name of a race or religion.

Don't pre-empt the rulers

Ti also commented on Asyraf's remark that the syariah courts have been reserved for Muslims and had never encroached on the rights of the non-Muslims.

Acknowledging Umno's "good job" in upgrading the status of syariah courts, Ti said there had been instances where the rights and the way of life of the non-Muslims have been encroached upon by the officers.

Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki

"This has led to Umno and their associates losing the support of non-Muslims and Sabah/Sarawak electorates.

"The same mistake should not be repeated now that Umno is a junior partner to DAP and PKR who have been elected to govern the country back on a moderate and pluralistic path," said Ti.

This, he noted, called for a more multiracial approach and inclusive governance, including having minority representation on all platforms to consider their views on government-related matters, especially when politicians are involved.

"We have the utmost confidence in the Conference of the Rulers. But then again, we must be mindful not to decide on issues within the jurisdiction of the Conference of Rulers by setting up a committee or council with a political shadow, or whose appointments are beholden to their political masters,” Ti added.

1 comment:

  1. Wakakakaka…

    Intellectual discourse!!

    To a bunch of zombies fed on ketusnan fart?

    Tankuku lah!