KUCHING: Despite the return of the seized “Herald”, Parti Rakyat Sarawak Youth still calls on the government to intervene and use its legislative power to reverse the Court of Appeal’s (COA) decision to ban the Herald from using the word “Allah”.
“We are thoroughly upset by the news that copies of the Herald were confiscated at Kota Kinabalu airport last Thursday. We are now confused.
“PM Najib and some other ministers had given assurance that we in East Malaysia are excluded from the recent Court of Appeal decision?” PRS deputy youth chief Councillor Sempurai Petrus Ngelai told The Borneo Post yesterday.
He said although the seized copies had been released, there was still a lot of explanation to be made as apparently, there was still the lack of understanding among the government officers of various departments.
The Councillor of Sibu Municipal Council stressed that the general public of Sarawak felt that the Herald did not pose any threat to Islam because the newspaper was meant only for the Catholic community.
“There is no logic to the ban Allah in The Herald when it is allowed to be used in Al-kitab. The government must take into consideration the fact that Sarawakians and Sabahans have been using the word for centuries and still live in
peace and harmony with their Muslim brothers,” said Sempurai, a lawyer by profession.
He urged the government to honour the 10-point solution agreed prior to the last General Election as failing to do so might risk losing its credibility among Christians in the two Borneo states.
“Support for Barisan Nasional in Sarawak and Sabah could drop significantly if this issue is not resolved adequately. We fully support our party’s president Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Masing in wanting the government to ‘walk the talk’,”, stressed Sempurai.
He was concerned as the confiscation of The Herald weekly publication in Sabah showed the blanket effect of the COA’s ruling on the ban of using the word “Allah” in Sabah and Sarawak.