By Emma Victoria
A SERIES of old news clippings quoting PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang as saying that only a Muslim Bumiputera is qualified to govern Sarawak has gone viral in the state recently, four years after it first hit headlines.
The 2016 news made their way to various online platforms like Facebook Groups and chat messaging apps like WhatsApp following Gabungan Parti Sarawak’s decision to back Perikatan Nasional during the recent political crisis. Perikatan also comprises Islamist party, PAS.
Many were angered by the reminder and felt that Hadi’s views has no place in Sarawak, which is known for cherishing its diversity.
A Facebook user, F.C Chong opined that “Sarawak is a secular state. There is no state religion; everyone is free to practice his/her own religion. Stay out of Sarawak. It is none of your (Hadi) business.”
Another user, John Tiong Chunghoo urged the people to be careful of these ignorant peninsula politicians who try to radicalise Sarawak politics. “We don’t want Sarawak to be like the racism fuelled Peninsula.”
“The majority in Sarawak is Iban race. There should be an Iban CM,” David Kuok suggested when commenting on the post shared in “Sarawak Public Feedback Facebook group”which has over 58,000 members.
James Lim also wrote “Now you all should know why this man cannot be in the ruling party. He is good for nothing except creating problems and damaging the unity of people in the country.”
Meanwhile, another netizen commented “It does not matter what you want, if you are living for a race or religion, you cannot be a good leader. Besides, the only reason you want to create a law to protect your position is you are weak and inadequate. You are afraid of others who are better.
In 2016, Hadi when campaigning in Sarawak during the state election, had said that only a Muslim Bumiputera should lead the state.