KUALA LUMPUR: It is possible that the nation will face God's wrath due to the actions of the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community, says opposition leader Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid.
"If we look at the situation in Malaysia, we are concerned over the incident of earthquake and tsunami in Palu, Indonesia, recently, where it is believed more than 1,000 of them were involved in such activities.
"But the whole area was destroyed as part of God's punishment.
"I would like to ask, as part of Malaysian Islamic Development Department's (Jakim) task, (for them) to implement the Mukhayyam outreach programme to help the LGBT community, and other steps taken by government agencies and other states, and to state the effectiveness of such programmes so we can avoid similar punishment from God, including those who clearly reject the LGBT," said Dr Ahmad Zahid (BN-Bagan Datuk) during Question Time.
In reply, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa said that although the LGBT issue was a social problem in the country, the situation was under control.
He said that the government's stand on LGBT culture was clear – that it was not accepted, but the government would take different approaches to address it.
"As Muslims, we believe that any calamity that took place happened naturally with the approval from God," Dr Mujahid said.
"In the issue of LGBT, although it is a problem here, it is still under control.
"I don't think that it is as simple as that – that if we do something, we will earn God's wrath. What we need to do right now is to find ways to address the problem," he said.
According to Dr Mujahid, the government realised that the actions of the LGBT community might have caused them to be sidelined even more from mainstream culture.
"Study shows that there are about 20,000 transgenders, and more than 80% of them are involved in the sex industry.
"Jakim, as an agency at the federal level, has taken the initiative to reach out to the community, including to invite them back to participate in treatment and recovery programmes voluntarily via its mukhayyam initiative since 2011," he said.
Dr Mujahid added that the programme was done along with other relevant Islamic state agencies and non-governmental organisations (NGOS).