Activist Tariq Ismail stands by G25 duo


  • Nation
  • Sunday, 20 Dec 2015

PETALING JAYA: Writer/activist Tariq Ismail has pledged his support for two members of the G25 group of eminent Malays who are being investigated for sedition.

In a statement on Sunday, Tariq stated that he will stand by his uncle Tawfik Tun Dr Ismail and aunt Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin, against the threat of being charged under the Sedition Act 1948 for standing up to their constitutional right to seek reform.

“Malaysia should be a land that encourages dialogue and ideas, no matter how radical, and it is only through common sense can we filter the extreme from the balanced middle and avoid radicalism.

“The prejudicial use of the Sedition Act on these two individuals may perhaps be better used on those who are blatantly inciting and fanning the flames of polarisation and intolerance, such as the online Media portals, especially those leaning to the left and anti establishment,” he said.

On Friday, Malacca police chief Datuk Chuah Ghee Lye confirmed that they were investigating Farida based on police reports lodged against her for her remarks on khalwat.


Here is the Tawfik's statement.


"IN the name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. Praise be to Allah, prayer and peace be upon the Messenger of Allah and his family and companions. 

Dear brothers and sisters, peace be upon you and Allah’s mercy and blessings. I speak to our brothers and sisters who are Muslim, Christian, Buddhist, Hindu; Malay, Chinese, Indian, Indigenous Tribes; to both the Government and Opposition; to friends and foe; and to Malaysians as a whole. 

Islam, my beloved religion and way of life has come to the forefront and in a negative light. There are those who insist on using carnage, destruction and ego, through words and action, to showcase a misinterpretation of what Islam truly is. I have mentioned that Malaysia is a land full of fools and only fools will bring about the destruction of our beloved motherland, and like all sons and daughters to a mother, we must at all cost defend our mother against our enemies. 

I, Tariq Ismail, stand by my uncle Tawfik Tun Dr Ismail and aunt Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin against the threat of being charged under the Sedition Act 1948 for standing up to their constitutional right to seek reform . Malaysia should be a land that encourages dialogue and ideas, no matter how radical, and it is only through common sense can we filter the extreme from the balanced middle and avoid radicalism. The prejudicial use of the Sedition Act on these two individuals may perhaps be better used on those who are blatantly inciting and fanning the flames of polarisation and intolerance, such as the online Media portals, especially those leaning to the left and anti establishment . 

The news is a very powerful tool. A tool that can be used to educate the people. A tool that can also sow the seeds of hatred amongst the people. We cannot deny that hate and distrust is rampant amongst the good citizens of this land and we, the people, often use personal prejudice for our selfish wants. Myths and fiction have been manipulated to become facts. It is the unscrupulous methods and reporting of the Anti Establishment Online Media portal that wishes to divide the people further, and only they profit from it, whilst the good citizens suffer the loss. The Criminal does not want freedom. He is only interested in lining his pocket. 

Quoting Shakespeare, the pen is mightier than the sword. I urge everyone to understand the implications of this, especially the divisive online Media portals. If the words from their pens become a tool for settling scores, to gossip, and to charge people randomly, then their words will become a tool for destruction. It has to always be remembered that there is a fine line between condemnation and constructive criticism. Where constructive criticism is always good, to condemn, rile and inflame public sentiments is immoral and unethical to say the least. Therefore, I ask everyone to fear God in their words and actions, to shoulder their responsibilities and not to become a burden on their religion, homeland, and parents. 

We must remember, the Constitution is the raison d’etre of our nation, the foundation upon which our nation was built. It embraces every Malaysian. It is this raison d’etre that bought us our freedom, and it is this raison d’etre that will empower us to hold on to our freedom. Malaysia is Us and We are Malaysia. If we unite now and stand strongly together, each person to every other person, and each ethnicity or other group to every other group, then we will make this country a model of that which the people of our world call Democracy. 

The Constitution has imposed a mandate upon us to lay the foundation of our union as a nation. No sporadic act nor pious resolution can resolve our present problems. Nothing will be of avail, except the united act of a united people. What I see today, is polarisation between the different ethnicities, and, within the Malays we are not immune to this pestilence. If the Malays are split on political and religious ideology, the scourge of political terrorism will creep and devour us from within. We Malaysians cannot be blind to our real enemy. 

We are all part of one and the same Malaysia. Our role is based on defending our citizen rights and making sacrifices for unity. Any fair minded person cannot deny his/her role in this regard. We should always be keen to support others in their just causes. This will only be achieved through unity. At the international level, among people and nations, our position is clear, and the world stands united with Muslims based on friendship and promotion of peace. 

Malaysia has been and should be a nation that encourages the use of dialogue, moderation and coexistence. It is through dialogue that our beautiful Malaysia coalesced from. Sadly at present, avenues for dialogue are nonexistent due to seemingly insurmountable differences of opinions, political leanings and simply being prejudiced. Perhaps now is the time for us to set aside all these differences and get rid of our prejudices, and unite as Malaysians. 

The world today, from Paris to Basra and from Mumbai to Bali, has suffered a great deal from terrorism. The Muslim world have been keen to fight it rigorously and decisively, and to address its intellectual perceptions especially those that distort the teachings of Islam. Islam is innocent of terrorism. It is no secret for all those who are fair that moderation and tolerance are the path of Islam it is essential that we ourselves practice this in order to successfully and fully cooperate with the international community in facing the terrorism phenomenonat the security, intellectual and legal levels. 

The sovereignty of this country imposes a collective responsibility on us to defend it at all times especially when the ambitions of our enemies, detractors and aggressors have increased. This requires us to be ever vigilant. Therefore, there is a double responsibility that has to be shared by everyone wherever they are. Malaysia is for all of us. All of us will be measured according to our efforts, sacrifices and dedication to a country whose foundation is based on the pillars of The Federal Constitution. This is the critical measure by which the caliber and loyalty of the people of this country will be tested. 

God Almighty, in His wisdom, tests the faithful by allowing such calamities to happen. But He, in His mercy, also provides us with the will and determination, generated by faith, to enable us to transform such tragedies into great achievements. Crises that seem debilitating are transformed into opportunities for the advancement of humanity. 

It is thus I wish to call upon my Malaysian brothers and sisters to look toward a new cause, a cause that will unite us and allow us to return to the mutual respect that our motherland was founded on. I call on my brothers and sisters in G25, ISMA and Perkasa to embrace this new direction that I wish for us to embark on. I call my brothers and sisters in the political parties of UMNO, PAS MCA, MIC, DAP, PKR, PAN and PSM to unite under the banner of our Federal Constitution so we can begin a new process of the New Discussion to set new goals to bring our beloved country forward. 

We have a favorable opportunity for cooperation and mobilization of some initiatives, that I will eventually propose, to reach truly national solutions for the pressing challenges that are facing us in the fight against terrorism and the political as well as in the promotion of confidence in the global economy and to ensure that every citizen in this country . We are confident that through our cooperation we can achieve this. 

During this difficult time, we are facing a new wave of terror, that has nothing to do with the beautiful religion of Islam, that’s effect is threatening the whole world, in which we have to address it decisively and wisely. And, graces of God, we can prevent its worst consequences on the nation, and we are still watching the situation with caution and vigilance. 

In the mid of all that, it was necessary for the process of development to continue in our dear homeland, to achieve all of a decent life for citizens. 

This is our way, and that is our approach, and we will continue with God's will and strength, working tirelessly to make a bright, flourish Malaysian future, full of tolerance, love, and proud. 

assalamualaikum warahmatullahi wabarakaatuh."

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