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The Christians are the sacrificial lambs in Allah issue

Let's put things back in proper perspective. The whole Allah episode should be a grave concern to all Malaysians because it touches the fundamental freedom of religion and freedom of speech of all Malaysians.

Looking at the chronology of the whole issue, it is the Home Ministry under the BN government on the offensive in curtailing and restricting the East Malaysian bumiputera Catholics from practicing their religion.

It started with the adoption of Bahasa Melayu as the medium of instruction in national schools.

So the Kadazan, Dusun, Dayaks, and Ibans Christians are more comfortable with Bahasa Melayu instead of English. So naturally they would worship and pray in Bahasa Melayu.

Then the Printing Presses and Publication Act was enacted. A law enacted that give the Home Ministry the power to make it impossible to print Bahasa Melayu bibles in Malaysia.

The only alternative Christians have is to import their holy book from Indonesia. In Indonesia, the Christians there call God Allah. So, Indonesian bibles call God Allah in stead of Tuhan.

And this is the only holy book the Christian bumiputera in Sabah and Sarawak could use because the Home Ministry under the Malaysian government disallows the printing of Bahasa Melayu bibles in Malaysia.

If the Government allows the Christians to print Bahasa Melayu bibles, they could at least follow what the many Muslims demanded, to change the name they use to Tuhan instead of Allah.

But alas, there was never such an avenue!

The assault didn't stop there, the Home Ministry under the leadership of none other than Syed Hamid Albar (an Umno politician) bans the East Malaysian bumiputera Catholic Christians from using Allah as the name of God in Bahasa Melayu.

Since the holy books they imported from Indonesia contains the word Allah, these books are often confiscated thus depriving East Malaysian bumiputeras of bibles.

The banning of the usage of Allah has also given a legitimate excuse to the Home Ministry to ban the Bahasa Melayu version of the Herald even if only only amongst the East Malaysian bumiputera Christians.

This effectively deprives East Malaysian Christians their freedom of speech and freedom of religion.

Never mind that there is already a law enacted to make it illegal to circulate the Herald to Muslims.

Never mind that there is already a law enacted to make it illegal for any church in Malaysia to convert a Muslim to a Christian. Never mind that East Malaysian Christians have called God Allah for decades.

The Home Ministry under the leadership of an Umno politician goes on the offensive to claim that the Christians have ill-intent to use Allah as the name of God.

The Christians are up to no good, trying to confuse the Muslims, they say. Instead of working to promote peace and harmony in Malaysia, the Home Ministry under the leadership of none other than Hishammuddin Hussein chose to fan religious and racial sentiments.

What they don’t tell the people is that Umno is behind why no Bahasa Melayu bible can be printed in Malaysia. That Umno is why churches are forced to import bibles from Indonesia. That Umno confiscates the holy books. That Umno is forcing the church to take the matter to court to fight for the right of East Malaysian bumiputera Christians to practise their religion.

Instead Umno and Utusan Malaysia are telling people that Christians are up to no good, that they want to confuse Muslims.

So, they have reaped what they sow. Now there are people out burning churches. They have achieved their goal. Now, Umno can show the people that they are the champions of Allah, even if they have to sacrifice the Christians, especially the East Malaysian Bumiputera Christians.

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