Wednesday, September 21, 2016

In Defense of Jeff Ooi and Sidek Kamiso

“Adios” is now on the word ban list in Malaysia!

I guess this came about because we are like “katak dibawah termpurung” (meaning ignorant and/or unknowledgeable). It also shows our stupidity. Lucidly. Glaringly. Manifestly.

DAP Jelutong MP Jeff Ooi (left) had reportedly tweeted on Friday: "Adios Harun Din. May there be peace" – this was in relation to PAS spiritual advisor, Haron Din’s passing.

Both “adios” and “may there be peace” had cause offense, at least to some Malaysians.

I’m sorry – I can’t figure it out! I still don't understand why these Malaysians feel aggrieved by the remarks? And what have they got to do with religion?

Anyway, the Inspector-General of Police says the above is being investigated under Section 298 of the Penal Code for causing disharmony, disunity or feelings of enmity, hatred or ill will, or prejudicing the maintenance of harmony on grounds of religion.

BTW, “adios” is a Spanish word and according to Merriam-Webster, it simply means “to express farewell”. I would like to believe that our highly-intelligent IGP and his underlings know how to use the computer – because they just need to google the word to know its meaning.

And, if they still don’t understand – below are two examples. The Enterese magazine carried the words “Adios a una Princesa” – meaning “Farewell to a Princess” and the Spanish edition of Ernest Hemingway’s novel, i.e. “Adios a las armas” meaning “A Farewell to Arms”:

Nothing offensive as far as I know. But then again, I don’t believe my stupidity has plunged to the depths that seem to have afflicted those in power.

And then the case of a former journalist who also got into hot soup because his words – again referring to Harun Din who was also well-known as a faith healer – “Someone who made his career selling air jampi for any illness succumbed to his illness in a modern day hospital in San Francisco”.

For those who don’t know, “air jampi” is basically, a potion in the Malay language.

Again, where does religion come into the picture? I am baffled, befuddled and bewildered.

For those innocuous remarks – which are claimed to have insulted Islam – Sidek Kamiso (right) was arrested in the wee hours of Monday morning by four cops who jumped his gate and secured entry into his house without a warrant.

And even more shocking was when IGP Khalid Abu Bakar commended his officers’ hooliganism in a tweet.

What has Malaysia become?

Yesterday, I was at Jalan PJU1/39 in Dataran Prima, PJ – to evaluate an Advanced speech from the Storytelling manual.

The Friendship Toastmasters meeting was well-attended and even better, well-enjoyed. I am glad the club is now infused with more enthusiasm, more exuberance and more energy!

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