Last Saturday (Mar 9), hundreds of women hit the streets of Kuala Lumpur to defend women’s rights. The Women’s March, which came a day after International Women’s Day, demanded an end to child marriage, gender and sexual orientation discrimination; reforming patriarchal society, increasing the minimum wage to RM1,800 and uphold women’s rights, Malaysiakini reported.
While most of the marchers carried pro-women banners, some were seen waving rainbow flags, a staple symbol of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community. Malaysiakini reporters confirmed that LGBT chants were heard during the rally, such as “Jangan kacau LGBT (Leave the LGBT community alone)” and “Hidup LGBT (Long live LGBT)”.
Following the march, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Mujahid Yusof Rawa criticized the rally for its ties to LGBT-related issues and he completely disregarded other demands made by the marchers which are women-centric issues.
Mujahid described the march as an abuse of democratic space, while PPBM supreme council member Wan Saiful Wan Jan and Wanita Umno chief Noraini Ahmad claimed that the rally had disrupted the harmony of the country.
Ini berita yang disiarkan pada 6 bulan lepas. Pendirian saya masih sama, LGBT haram disisi Islam dan bertentangan dengan norma masyarakat di Malaysia.https://t.co/PiAfgZux6S
— Dr Wan Azizah Ismail (@drwanazizah) March 11, 2019
As for our female Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, she also took a stance against LGBT in her latest Tweet today (Mar 11). Posting along with a Malay Mail article published in August last year, she wrote: “This news was published six months ago. My stance remains the same. LGBT is haram in Islam and goes against the norm of Malaysian society.”
Dr Wan Azizah, who is also the Minister of Women, Family and Community Development, did not mention anything about the march but the timely Tweet signalled that she was against anything that is pro-LGBT. No media reports nor Tweets have found Dr Wan Azizah supported the KL Women’s March.
Meanwhile, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir was stopped by reporters outside of Dewan Rakyat today and one journalist asked Dr Mahathir to comment about PAS-Umno recent political union which was branded as a marriage.
“If they want to be together, then let them be together.
“If they want to get married, let them get married.
“Negara kita ni bebas, you nak kahwin lelaki pun… sini tak boleh lagi lah. Tapi pergi tempat lain, boleh.”
“Our country is free. Even if you want to marry a man… well, it is not possible here yet. But you can still get married elsewhere,” Dr Mahathir said in jest.
Dr Mahathir’s comment on gay marriage seems to paint an LGBT-tolerant picture for the country’s future. In the comment section of the video published on Star TV, one netizen claimed that Dr Mahathir seemed to be supporting the LGBT community.
Malay Mail reported that Pakatan Harapan leaders are split on the LGBT-related issues, claiming that the Muslim leaders do not condone LGBT practices while others like those from the DAP have openly backed the community.
You can watch the full video of Dr Mahathir making that comment on the next page.