“Racial, religious narrative on social media not wrong if unoffensive,” says PAS leader

A PAS leader said talking about race and religion on social media is not wrong as long as it complies with the provisions outlined in the Federal Constitution.

Speaking to FMT, PAS deputy president Datuk Seri Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man pointed out that the issues that were discussed on social media like Malay rights and the status of the Malay language were key aspects of the Constitution.

As for discussions about religion, Tuan Ibrahim said talks about Islam on the social media platforms were “explanations to prevent violations of Shariah [law]”.

“For us (PAS), as Islam outlines what is and is not permissible in life, all parties must respect that,” he told the news portal.

The Kubang Kerian MP was commenting on a study conducted by the Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) which discovered that race-based narratives topped the list of local social media posts in the month leading up to last year’s general election.

Tuan Ibrahim was commenting on a study by the Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) on postings during the 15th general election, which found racial and religious narratives offending others dominating social media platforms during the elections, with most of them posted by politicians and political parties.

Conducted from Oct 20 to Nov 26 last year, the study found that out of 117,152 postings on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and TikTok, 66,933 touched on racial issues while 24,484 involved religious issues.

Further responding to the study, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said) called for racial or religious statements posted by politicians on social media to be monitored.

Speaking at an event in Putrajaya yesterday (May 31), Zahid said CIJ’s study saw petty issues being raised for political benefit such as a “fatwa” issued by a political leader that allegedly described another political party as “kafir” (infidel).

The Bagan Datuk MP also pointed out that such issues had created a friction between members of different parties who profess the same faith. – June 1, 2023


Main pic credit: The Star

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