Time to focus on economy and nationhood, says Lam Thye

KUALA LUMPUR: It is time to move on from the KK Super Mart socks issue and let the law take its course, says Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye.

The Alliance for a Safe Community founder and chairman said that there was a need to move on from contentious issues, especially those that could cause disunity, unhappiness, and possible violence.

"We need to move on from all other issues that take our attention away from important matters like the economy and nationhood.

"The law is now taking its course on this matter and we should all leave it at that.

"Let the law decide what is right and what is wrong and then prescribe the right response," he said in a statement on Sunday (March 31).

The convenience store chain recently came under fire after socks printed with the word "Allah" were found at its branch in Bandar Sunway, Selangor.

The company has since issued apologies but calls for a boycott continue to persist and two attacks on separate branches have been reported.

Lee said this is not the time to perpetuate illegality.

"If some matters still rankle, let the police do the necessary investigation and take action.

"Let us not take the law into our own hands.

"The consequences can be dire if we do," he said.

Lee said it is the duty of the National Unity Ministry to take immediate steps to address issues that could cause disunity in our multiracial country.

"That is their job, and that is what they should do.

"It is important for the ministry to hold a series of nationwide reconciliation events to smoothen ruffled feathers as suggested by former Sungai Benut MP Tawfik Ismail.

"In a multiracial society like ours, embracing this diversity should be celebrated as a strength rather than a source of division.

"It is time for us to recognise the dangers of continuously stoking sensitive issues for personal or political gain," he said.

He shared that while freedom of speech was a fundamental right, it should not cause harm and sow discord.

"Too often, discussions on sensitive topics escalate into heated debates, fuelled by emotions rather than by reason.

"These can then lead to unnecessary and unproductive polarisation," he said.

Lee said one of the cornerstones of a just society was the impartial application of the law.

"Regardless of race, religion or social status, every individual is entitled to equal protection under the law.

"Rather than taking matters into our own hands, let us entrust the legal system to uphold justice and hold perpetrators accountable for their actions," he said.

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