PETALING JAYA: Controversial preacher Zakir Naik should be expelled and banned from Malaysia as he has proven to be a threat to racial harmony, says Datuk Seri Dr Wee Ka Siong.
"As a foreigner and wanted criminal, who is he to tell the rightful Chinese citizens to leave the country? Since Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has said that his acceptance in Malaysia was granted on humanitarian grounds, Zakir should have some self-respect, " said the MCA president.
In a post on his Facebook page on Wednesday (Aug 14), Dr Wee said that Zakir should respect the multiracial and multicultural ways of Malaysia as well as the sensitivities of all, instead of behaving arrogantly and uttering hurtful remarks
During a religious talk in Kota Baru, Kelantan last Thursday (Aug 8), Zakir responded to calls for his deportation by saying that the Malaysian Chinese should "go back" first as they were the "old guests" of the country.
Prior to this, Zakir had said Hindus in Malaysia were more loyal to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi than to Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Zakir's remarks have since been criticised by various quarters.
Pushing for Zakir's deportation, Dr Wee said the preacher should observe basic etiquette or get out of Malaysia.
"I appeal to the government to immediately expel Zakir from the country and forever ban him from entering Malaysia. Zakir's words and behaviour are often controversial and have caused dissatisfaction among people of all races, especially Hindus. Keeping him here will only bring more problems to our ethnic relations.
"It is no easy feat to achieve the harmony and prosperity enjoyed by the multiracial society in Malaysia. We do not need a self-righteous outsider to destroy our social peace and ethnic relations, " he added.
Dr Wee said that the Chinese are rightful citizens who are mostly born and raised in Malaysia and are fully integrated into Malaysian life, culture and traditions.
"Chinese citizens are part of this country and have made many contributions to the development of Malaysia. Malaysians can't even tell each other to leave the country, and as a foreigner, Zakir is even less qualified to do so, " he said.
Zakir, who was given permanent resident status by the previous government, is wanted in his home country of India for alleged money laundering and inciting terrorism.
Last month, Dr Mahathir had said that Malaysia is not keen for the controversial Islamic preacher to be here, but is hard-pressed to deport him elsewhere as "many countries" will not accept him.