PERTUBUHAN IKRAM Malaysia and the Kuala Lumpur & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (KLSCAH) have expressed their dismay at the racist sentiments that have been playing out in the recent weeks, especially on social media.
In pointing out that these negative sentiments can damage multiracial harmony and social cohesion, both groups called on all parties to exercise prudence and wisdom before publishing statements or materials that can “incite disquiet” among the public.
“Decisions should be guided by the Rukun Negara, which were intended to foster unity. The principles enshrined in the Rukun Negara are the key to racial harmony and unity which are themselves key to the success and stability of Malaysia,” they said in a statement.
“IKRAM and KLSCAH urge all political and civil society leaders to play a role in ensuring their members do not release provocative, racially-tinged statement in order to maintain the harmony that has been built over the span of decades.”
Both groups stressed that members of the public must also play their part by reporting any individuals or groups that spread hate towards any specific race or fan the flames of racial issues to the authorities.
This will help control racist sentiments and bring those responsible to face justice, they added.
“Our hope is that multiracial unity and cohesion will be strengthened and forge a stable country – a Malaysia that is developed, progressive and prosperous,” they remarked.
Following the 15th general election (GE15) police had warned the public not to create tension or any provocation on social media that could threaten public safety and order.
Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said this after the police detected social media users uploading content with racial or religious sentiments and insults towards the royal institution following GE15 results.
“PDRM, in calling for restraint, is warning social media users to refrain from abusing the platform to spread provocative content that may cause public alarm,” he said.
“Strict action under the Communications and Multimedia Commission Act 1998, (and also) the Sedition Act and Penal Code will be used against any party trying to create a situation that threatens public safety and order.”
It was also previously reported that post-GE15, TikTok had become a breeding ground for racially-charged content with several posts warning about a possible repeat of the deadly May 13, 1969 race riots were found on the video-sharing platform in the 48 hours after polling day, which accumulated over several hundred thousand views.
The videos or their creators had no identifiable links to one another but they propagated a similar narrative targeted at Malay-Muslim viewers, alleging political dominance by DAP if the party is allowed to be a part of any government.
The May 13 incident involved violent clashes between members of the Malay and the Chinese communities in and around Kuala Lumpur after opposition parties supported by Chinese voters made inroads in an election. – Dec 19, 2022
Main pic credit: AFP/Getty Images