I was appalled by the cop-out statement of appeasement by DS Nazri Aziz as published by the NST today. According to DS Nazri, Non-Muslims in three states and the Federal Territories are allowed to use the word 'Allah'! He also said restrictions on the use of 'Allah',"... is under the state law. But in Federal Territories, Penang, Sabah and Sarawak, there is no such law to stop them."
So now, instead of having to accept the historical situation in Sabah and Sarawak only, which DS Nazri himself seems to mistakenly limit to,"...Iban and Kadazan families, there are Christians and Muslims in one family...", forgetting that even Melanaus have the same, Malays in the Peninsular have to accept multi-use of the word 'Allah' in Penang and the Malaysian Capital Cities of Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya too?!!
Why the cop-out DS Nazri? Afraid of the swing of Catholic votes? Do you think Catholics are as shallow as the leaders of their church? Do you not care about the feelings and sentiments of Malays in Penang and the Federal Territories? Don't you remember that BN lost in 5+1 states at PRU12 in part due to RETURNING MALAY VOTES FROM THE FEDERAL TERRITORIES AND PENANG? have you forgotten that BN LOST MALAY VOTES IN PENANG AND KUALA LUMPUR?
Does DS Nazri not realise the majority of Malays passionately think of this issue as illustrated below?
Some may be appalled that I talking about votes as being DS Nazri's motive. Well, I'm doing so as I cannot fathom why else he would be copping out like this! It cannot be because he is behaving as Malay leader... OK it is consistent with many other weak Malay leadership actions I have seen on this issue, but this is probably the weakest yet! As a Malay leader, he should be adopting the majority view, affirmed by DS Zahid Hamidi in Parliament which is illustrated here:
It can't be as the so-called law minister either, as it is inconsistent with the more proper legal line of awaiting the results of the court of appeal (which is by the way, MAYC's stated stand to date... our pro-tem President's a lawyer after all!). Nazri's stand is hence also inconsistent with the Malaysian Government stand AGAINST Catholic use of the word Allah, as TS Muhyiddin has reaffirmed that the government's appeal against Judge Lau Bee Lan's decision is proceeding.
If DS Nazri really wanted to show himself to be the best among his cabinet colleagues by resolving this issue, there would be more equitable ideas that could be mooted. For instance, SatD's been driving towards this one I believe, one could propose what the Indonesians are REALLY practicing, rather than what many have incorrectly said that Allah is of common use among Muslims and Christians there.
In Indonesia, the Christian 'Allah' is pronounced differently, it is voiced akin to 'Alah' in Malay phonetics. The double-L in the word Allah is actually denoting the phonetics of the double 'Lam' in the arabic spelling of Allah. If the Catholics crave use of the word so much, why not adopt Alah as their word for God? They pronounce it phonetically as Alah anyway as the 'Mat Salleh' Missionaries tend to be unable to pronounce Allah properly. Leave Allah to Malays.
We can even make this consistent across Malaysia! Allah for Muslims, Alah for Christians! Maybe then someone will be inspired to use Elah... etc. Thinking 'global', maybe we can then even advance this Malaysian 'Alah' solution to be adopted by Indonesia and other countries where there is dual-use! Of course, we should do this only if there are similar concerns as in Malaysia, concerns which I understand is arising among our neighbours.
Do I like the idea of the Catholics using Alah instead of Allah? Not particularly, as it feels like another cop-out, but at least it isn't as big a cop-out as DS Nazri's!