Press Statement By DAP Secretary-General And MP For Bagan Lim Guan Eng In Kuala Lumpur On 15.11.2021:
Will GPS, MCA And MIC Ministers Dare To Draw The Red Line In Cabinet Meeting This Week Against PAS Extremist Policies?
DAP MPs will pursue in Parliament to demand a full public apology from one PAS minister and the other a PAS deputy minister for disgraceful behaviour with their unseemly confrontation with a female reporter that is not befitting of a member of the Federal government. The two PAS leaders were arrogant and personally attacked the FMT reporter, Minderjeet Kaur, by bringing in her family member over her repeated questions about a ban on gaming outlets in Kedah. Both leaders have once again shown the true face of PAS as a heartless bully of minorities and women, who have no place under the extremist policies of PAS.
PAS vice-president Idris Ahmad, a senator who is religious affairs minister, pointedly asked if Minderjeet could tolerate her husband being a gambler, while Awang Hashim, who is deputy human resources minister and MP for Pendang, insisted that she ask the question in Bahasa Malaysia, even questioning whether she is a Malaysian. This may be acceptable behaviour for PAS leaders in their party who admire the Taliban government in Afghanistan but not to Malaysians who have rights under the Federal Constitution.
Idris was wrong and lied when he said everyone, both Muslims and non-Muslims, are against gambling. There are some non-Muslims who are against gambling but not everyone wants to ban gambling. Gambling should not be banned merely because one is personally opposed to gambling. A leader should not be forcibly imposing his own personal moral values on others who should be free to choose. PAS is taking a simplistic and narrow position from an extremist political viewpoint without bothering about the social and financial implications.
DAP agrees that there should be restrictions imposed such as prohibiting Muslims and also address the attendant social problems involved. Further any ban or gambling will only benefit illegal gambling operators who will be able to increase their business as well as worsen corruption in the police for illegal betting syndicates. That is the reason why gambling is legalised in many countries to curb illegal betting operators. The high excise duties imposed on cigarettes and alcohol has not deterred but facilitated the expansion of smuggled or illegal or contraband goods in the country.
This sudden and hasty decision to ban all betting outlets in Kedah by PAS Kedah Menteri Besar Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor is clearly tied to PAS extremist approach to drum up support for PAS candidates in the Melaka state elections. However this sudden and hasty decision by the Kedah state government without any consultation with the stakeholders have not only ignored the cultural diversity, customary lifestyle and business practices that have gone on since Merdeka in 1957, but also affected the revenue for those who have invested in the gambling outlets.
Why have MCA, GPS and MIC Ministers being so quiet about PAS extremist policies? Will these Ministers dare to draw a red line and demand in this week’s Cabinet meeting that Cabinet direct that this ban be reversed to prove that MCA, GPS and MIC can stand firmly on their position of being able to stop PAS extremist policies?
LIM GUAN ENG