Kit Siang: Violence at World Cup match shows Malaysians’ true loyalties

Police detain a supporter of Indonesia next to supporters of Malaysia (in black) after an incident during the Fifa World Cup preliminary qualification round 2 at Gelora Bung Karno stadium in Jakarta September 5, 2019. — AFP pic
Police detain a supporter of Indonesia next to supporters of Malaysia (in black) after an incident during the Fifa World Cup preliminary qualification round 2 at Gelora Bung Karno stadium in Jakarta September 5, 2019. — AFP pic

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KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 6 — Malaysian football fans attacked by their Indonesian opposites during a football World Cup qualifier in Jakarta yesterday was an indicator of their common national identity regardless of race, Lim Kit Siang said today.

The DAP lawmaker said it was also a reminder for Malaysians to guard against attempts to pit the country’s various races against one another with fake news and racism.

“It is a reminder that Malays, Chinese and Indians in Malaysia, who are citizens of Malaysia, have more in common with each other than with the Indonesians in Indonesia, the Chinese in China or the Indians in India,” the Iskandar Puteri MP said in his third statement on the topic this week.

Indonesian supporters pelted visiting Malaysian fans with missiles after their national team lost 3-2 to the Harimau Malaya in the Asian Zone Group C match of the World Club 2022 Qualifiers at the Gelora Bung Karno stadium in Jakarta yesterday.

Lim used the incident as his latest launchpad for veiled criticism of India-born preacher Dr Zakir Naik, who is under police investigation for racial incitement here.

Dr Zakir previously accused the local Indian community of being loyal to India Prime minister Narendra Modi and described Malaysians of Chinese descent as “guests” in the country.

“It is sheer mischief and evil for a foreigner to suggest that Indian Malaysians are more supportive of Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi than Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, just as it is equally mischievous and evil for anyone to suggest that the Malays regard Joko Widodo or Jokowi as their President or the Chinese Malaysians regard Xi Jinping as their President when all Malaysians are loyal to the Yang di Pertuan Agong, the system of constitutional monarchy and the institutions of state as set out in the Malaysian Constitution,” he said.

Lim also commented on the federal Cabinet’s critical response to a call for Muslims to boycott halal products made by non-Muslims, and urged Malaysians to strive for greater unity.

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