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Saturday March 5, 2011

Kelantan slammed over sweeping clampdown

Reports by K. SUTHAKAR, SYED AZHAR, SIRA HABIBU, CHRISTINA TAN, ISABELLE LAI and P. ARUNA

 

PETALING JAYA: The PAS-led Kelantan Government’s decision to extend its ban on gambling to the Big Sweep lottery tickets has been widely condemned.

Describing the move as inconsistent and tactless towards non-Muslims, MCA vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen said the lottery was not new and had existed for a long time.

“It brought no problem in the past, so why now? The ban shows how insensitive the Kelantan government is towards non-Muslims,” she said.

Another party vice-president Datuk Chor Chee Heung said PAS should concentrate on bigger problems faced by the Kelantanese.

“The extended ban on Big Sweep lottery tickets will go a long way to cover up the state government’s weaknesses in other areas,” said Chor.

MCA Youth chief Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong said the DAP should explain PAS’ action, adding that the ban did not support DAP’s assurance that PAS was now more open-minded.

Kelana Jaya MCA division chief Ong Chong Swen said selling lottery tickets in Malaysia was a legitimate commercial transaction and the ban would cause Kelantanese to buy lottery tickets in Terengganu as well as encourage illegal sales.

Also calling the DAP to state its stand on the issue was Gerakan Youth chief Tan Keng Liang.

“It is a clear indication of what will happen if PAS comes to power,” he said.

Kita president Datuk Zaid Ibrahim said PAS’ move was not wise as the ban would bring no political mileage to its party.

“People are warming up to them as a party that could replace Umno in the future. This infringes on the rights of Malaysians,” he said.

Suaram chairman K. Arumugam said PAS shouldn’t try to import Syariah Law into civil law, adding that the move was constitutionally incorrect and definitely infringed on the rights of non-Muslims.

Gerakan president Tan Sri Koh Tsu Koon said Merlimau and Kerdau voters had been told to weigh PAS’ ban on lottery as an indication of things to come.

The DAP and Suhakam were the only two parties that agree with PAS’ move.

DAP Segambut MP Lim Lip Eng said that as a democratic nation, Malaysians should abide by the wishes of the majority and in the case of Kelantan he believed the Muslims were the majority although the move infringed on the rights of non-Muslims.

 

 

 

 

 

 
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