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Shocking racism in Parliament

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Aliran is shocked at the racist incident that took place on the first day of the parliamentary sitting that began yesterday.

Parliamentarian Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim’s racist conduct yesterday was utterly unbecoming of an MP. As an MP, he was elected to serve the will of the people. But his shameful use of a racist slur against a fellow MP was not only a personal attack but also seen as a deep-cutting insult to Malaysia’s multi-ethnic society.

The boorish behaviour of the MP for Baling was despicable and must be roundly condemned by all Malaysians who cherish our diversity and multi-ethnic harmony. Such hurtful words simply do not belong in our society, much less in the hallowed halls of Parliament at the heart of our democracy. What example has this MP set for the people of Malaysia?

The newly appointed Speaker should have put his foot down and reprimanded the offending MP immediately. That would have put MPs on notice against any attempt to use offensive, racist or sexist language. It was a missed opportunity for the speaker to display his courage and set an uncompromising tone against such language.

Instead the Speaker did nothing – until today, when he made a belated ruling against the offensive remarks. The MP for Baling finally retracted his remark and offered a belated apology to the MP for Batu Kawan. Azeez should also apologise to all Malaysians for these racist remarks.

From now on, the Speaker must show he is an independent adjudicator acting without fear or favour. He must crack down swiftly on any offensive, boorish, racist and sexist behaviour.

Yesterday’s racist incident in Parliament was not the first – but it must never recur. We demand that MPs act with the dignity and respect befitting their role as representatives of the people.

Since the Sheraton Move in late February and the delay in holding meaningful parliamentary proceeding until July, the people’s trust in the parliamentary democratic process has fallen to an all-time low.

Unfortunately, the first day of the parliamentary sitting that began yesterday turned into a circus of reprehensible behaviour, which will not help to endear the institution to the people it purportedly serves.

It is time MPs restore the people’s faith in the legislature by doing what they were elected to do – representing the will and the needs of the people.

Aliran executive committee
14 July 2020
The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

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Lim Miao Yiong
Lim Miao Yiong
19 Jul 2020 7.49am

Re Shocking racism in Parliament: please give us context. Not all of us know what was said exactly. I don’t know what your writer is referring to. This kind of article does not give facts, just emotion.

17 Jul 2020 11.11am

It was not only a racial slur on a fellow MP but also a personal attack on YB Kasturi. How can a MP stoop so low? He should have bolted out of the august house. Even more shocking her fellow party colleagues kept quite like a mouse. What happen to all the female MP’s? Irrespective of which party they belong didn’t their conscience prick them to defend a fellow female MP for the personal attack?

16 Jul 2020 1.29pm

Rascist wasting taxpayers’ hard earnings…why still have him?? Now he hurts many Malaysians. Get lost!

Gursharan Singh
Gursharan Singh
16 Jul 2020 10.54am

Why is ‘Aliran is shocked at the racist incident that took place on the first day of the parliamentary sitting that began yesterday’?
Is it not a common perception that racialism or apartheid in various forms may be normal culture in many countries but only some may be voicing it openly and some wriing against it?
Bless all .

Benedict Lopez
15 Jul 2020 2.47pm

It will be quite interesting to know the comments of the women MPs in the current government.

Teo Chuen Tick
15 Jul 2020 6.54am

Strike 2 against the backdoor Speaker!
No, it will not be 3 strikes and this hypocrite will be out – the backdoor government has groomed this frog.

Hakimi Abdul Jabar
15 Jul 2020 5.24am

It was Pot Calling the Kettle Black!…

I’m sure folks like Isham Rais has tons of comments!

It is Shocking Racism!

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