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Akmal’s arrest expected, to prevent tensions from boiling over, says Fayhsal
Published on: Friday, April 05, 2024
By: Malay Mail
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Akmal’s arrest expected, to prevent tensions from boiling over, says Fayhsal
Bersatu Youth chief Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Kamal says the detention of Umno Youth chief Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh is an expected pre-emptive measure to quell escalating racial and religious tensions in Malaysia. (Malay Mail pic)
Kuala Lumpur: The detention of Umno Youth chief Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh is an expected pre-emptive measure to quell escalating racial and religious tensions in Malaysia, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia’s (Bersatu) Youth chief, Wan Ahmad Fayhsal Wan Kamal, said.

Speaking to Malay Mail, he said that this is especially the case given the concerns of and pressure from Sabah and Sarawak on the federal government.

“So I think the police, the authorities had to rein in Dr Akmal for the sake of calming down the tension.

“If not, I think it will stoke more tension among Muslims and non-Muslims, which is not good in the long run.

“I hope Dr Akmal remains steadfast and calm, and as the inspector-general of police said, he will be investigated under the Sedition Act,” Ahmad Fayhsal said.

However, he expressed doubt that the act of boycotting falls within the scope of the Sedition Act.

“I will want to know the comments made by government backbenchers, especially DAP. Would they consent for such a law to be used on Dr Akmal?

“Is boycotting considered seditious? That could really create a lot of questions and doubts among the public, especially the Malay public.

“So it is not going to be easy, but I can also understand the government’s position. They had to do something,” he said.

Police today detained Dr Akmal, who has been leading boycott calls against local convenience store chain KK Super Mart, over the sale of socks with the word ‘Allah’ embroidered on them.

In a statement today, Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Razaruddin Husain said that Dr Akmal is being investigated under Section 4(1) of the Sedition Act 1958 and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) 1998.

“He has been investigated and the investigation papers will be sent to the Attorney General’s Chambers (AGC) after all the steps to complete the investigation are done,” Razaruddin said in a statement today.

Last week, experts warned that the government and political leaders must defuse unrest over the ‘Allah’ socks controversy before extremism takes root in multiracial Malaysia.

This is after a KK Super Mart outlet in Kuching was targeted with a Molotov cocktail, making it the third outlet of the convenience chain to be attacked since the start of the controversy.

The incident in Sarawak has caused additional concern as the state is considered to be a bastion of multiculturalism in Malaysia.

DAP chairman Lim Guan Eng had also urged Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to call for an emergency National Security Council (NSC) meeting, following the arson attacks on three KK Super Mart outlets.

Dr Akmal has insisted on continuing his call to boycott KK Super Mart over the ‘Allah’ socks issue, in apparent disregard of Yang di-Pertuan Agong Sultan Ibrahim’s decree to not prolong the controversy.

Sultan Ibrahim had said that he did not want the controversy to drag on, after granting an audience to KK Mart Group executive chairman Datuk Seri Chai Kee Kan who apologised to the King over the incident.

Three weeks ago, at the start of the socks issue, Dr Akmal had also posted a photo on Instagram of him bearing a Japanese sword. His caption said he would not change his stance for anything and he “preferred to die standing than living on his knees”. This prompted lawyers’ movement, Lawyers for Liberty (LFL), to question the police as to why he has not been questioned for the controversial social media post.

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