KUALA LUMPUR, May 4 — The rally to defend the “sovereignty of Islam” organised by pro-Islam Gerakan Pembela Ummah (Ummah) today saw placards calling for Attorney-General Tommy Thomas’ dismissal, and posters in support of Johor Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim. 

Participants of the rally started gathering in Masjid Jamek despite the bad weather from 1pm and speeches by political and non governmental organisation (NGO) leaders are currently ongoing.

Ummah, which is a coalition of Muslim NGOs, had last year organised a rally against the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Icerd). 

At 2pm the crowd had swelled to 2,000 people with many participants wearing headbands bearing the Islamic Shahada. 

The organisers had said that the event was to protest against the Pakatan Harapan government for allegedly sidelining Malays and Muslims on issues pertaining to the Rome Statute, the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Icerd), the Unified Examination Certificate and the death of fireman Muhammad Adib Mohd Kassim in the Seafield temple riots in Subang Jaya among others.

Among those spotted at the event were Umno Youth chief Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki and PAS deputy president Datuk Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man.

Participants also carried banners with slogans like “Respect the institution of the monarchy”, “Defend the sovereignty of Islam” and “TMJ continue your fight”.

Among NGOs at the scene included Benar Malaysia, Sedar Malaysia, and other Malay-Muslim groups.

The crowd appeared to comprise of mainly Umno and PAS supporters wearing their party colours. At least 10 traders were selling various designs of T-shirts and scarves.

Yesterday Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said Ummah has vested political interests and is out to tarnish the image of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) government by painting it as uninterested in protecting the welfare of Muslims who form the bulk of the country’s multireligious population.

He dismissed the rally as a publicity stunt, and advised the organisers not to misuse religion to sow public discord.