Ridhuan Tee & Umno: Using a non-Malay to turn the minds of the Malays

Ridhuan Tee & Umno: Using a non-Malay to turn the minds of the Malays
Controversial academic Ridhuan Tee Abdullah, widely perceived to be an opportunist keen to get into the good books of the ruling elite, has disgraced himself once again.
A Muslim convert, Tee who once described himself as "staunch" Chinese insisted that defending Islam must go hand in hand with defending the Malays.
He was immediately slammed for his latest remarks, which indeed do reek of the same political racism adopted by Prime Minister Najib Razak's ruling United Malays National Organization or Umno.
"Stop politicizing Islam or any religion for that matter. This is clearly an election tactic released by Umno to turn the minds of the Malays against the non-Malays. They will attack Pakatan Rakyat especially PAS by mixing race with religion," Chua Jui Meng, PKR vice president, told Malaysia Chronicle.
"Tee should just admit he wants to 'bodek' Umno leaders and not be hypocritical about it. I don't what he is, but he is a disgrace to both Chinese and Malays, Muslim and non-Muslims alike. His statements are self-contradictory. He says Islam taught him that religion takes precedence over ethnicity. Then in the next breath, he puts defending Malay rights on the same level as defending Islam. Even though I am not a Muslim, I can tell him that in the eyes of Islam, the colour of one's skin is secondary."
Latest election gambit: 'Islamizing' Malay rights
As Malaysia moves into the last lap of the 13th general election, expected to be called soon, the political temperature has steadily risen with the Umno-led government calling on old favors and pulling out all stops to retain the federal government.
Businessmen, corporate captains, civil servants in all sectors, retirees and even pensioners have been urged to speak up for the Umno-led BN government.
Perhaps, it was no coincidence that Tee made the remarks at the launching of his books Masih Adakah Ketuanan Melayu? (Is there still such a thing as Malay Supremacy) and Cabaran Saudara Baharu di Malaysia at the Defence Ministry on Friday.
“In my understanding, when there is a clash between the importance of race with the importance of religion, like it or not, Islam taught me that religion must take priority," Malaysian Insider reported him as saying.
“So I took the decision, the stand, that the importance of religion must be upheld and to protect religion, this includes defending the Malay race as a whole."
So is Tee Malay or Chinese?
Tee, who converted to Islam 26 years ago, was also reported as saying that the Islamic faith had taught him that religion should take precedence above race.
He then cryptically said that because the Federal Constitution indicates that the Malays profess Islam, he had “no choice” but to place himself among those in the Malay race as well.
Article 160 Clause 2 of the Federal Constitution defines a Malay as a Malaysian citizen born to a Malaysian citizen who professes to be a Muslim, habitually speaks the Malay language, adheres to Malay customs, and is domiciled in Malaysia or Singapore.
As a result, Malay citizens who convert out of Islam are no longer considered Malay under the law. Hence, the Bumiputra privileges afforded to Malays under Article 153 of the Constitution, the New Economic Policy (NEP), etc. are forfeit for such converts.
Likewise, a non-Malay Malaysian who converts to Islam can lay claim to Bumiputra privileges, provided he meets the other conditions.
Among famous Malaysians whose 'Malay-ness' have often been questioned include former premier Mahathir Mohamad, who is of partial Indian descent.
Mahathir has attracted much notoriety not only because of his hardline authoritarian rule but also because of his frequent beating of the racial drums, spurring criticism that his Malay championing was a mere ploy for political power and prosperity.
Malaysia Chronicle

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