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Monitor postings on race and religion, says Zahid
Published on: Wednesday, May 31, 2023
By: Nora Mahpar, FMT
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Monitor postings on race and religion, says Zahid
Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said a ‘fatwa’ issued by a political leader calling another party ‘kafir’ has not been retracted.
PUTRAJAYA: Deputy prime minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi wants racial or religious statements posted by politicians on social media to be monitored, following a study by the Centre for Independent Journalism on postings during the 15th general election (GE15).

Zahid said the 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“The ‘fatwa’ calling the actions of another party as haram has not been retracted.

“This created a friction between members of different parties who profess the same faith,” said Zahid after launching an engagement session programme at Tabika Pra Tahfiz Kemas here today.

CIJ, in collaboration with Nottingham University Malaysia, Universiti Sains Malaysia and Universiti Malaysia Sabah, had monitored social media platforms during GE15.

It found racial and religious narratives offending others dominating social media platforms during the elections.

The study was conducted from Oct 20 to Nov 26 last year, starting from when the Election Commission announced the election date to a few days after GE15 was over.

It 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.

It identified the politicians who were the main actors contributing to racial narratives.

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