“Stealing is only a crime when a person is caught red-handed”, said a BN lawmaker.
Tanjong Karang MP Tan Sri Noh Omar made that appalling statement yesterday (Apr 4) in Dewan Rakyat when talking about subjects of politicians appearing in school.
According to Malay Mail, he was asking for equal and fair treatment for all politicians entering schools as he found out that principals who allowed him to enter their premises had been warned by the State Education Department.
“The regulation (for politicians to submit a request before entering a government school) has been around for a long time,” he said during the debate about the Supplementary Supply Bill.
“But back then (BN’s ruling) no one raised the issue. His Honorable (Jelutong-RSN Rayer) is a lawyer, you should understand this.
“Stealing is not wrong, only when you are arrested it becomes wrong.
“Riding a motorcycle without a helmet is not wrong, only when the police arrest you, it becomes wrong.
“The same with this regulation,” said Noh when replying to Rayer which he emphasised is a lawyer.
Noh said no opposition members of parliament were allowed to enter to schools today, adding that he has proofs of government leaders entering school without permission.
Very quickly, media has highlighted Noh’s questionable integrity as he exerted in the analogy. Many netizens have connected how this BN lawmaker is no different from its party’s former president Datuk Sri Najib Razak, who is currently facing a multitude of charges for siphoning millions from sovereign fund company 1MDB.
With that said, it is in the consensus that Noh has made an absurd statement. And that makes us wonder: what other absurd statements have our lawmakers made in the past one year?
FeedMe Malaysia has gathered six of the best controversial statements made by our fellow MPs from both the Pakatan Harapan government and the opposition party. First, let’s start with three BN MPs:
1. Indonesia’s earthquake and tsunami was Allah’s punishment for the LGBT community – Umno President
When Indonesia was hit by a major earthquake and a tsunami last October, opposition leader Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said it happened because it was a punishment from God as the country tolerated some 1,000 people that were involved with LGBT activities.
“As a result, the entire area (in Palu) was destroyed. This is Allah’s punishment.”
The BN president said he was concerned for Malaysia after Palu’s disaster as he suggested the ruling government to take serious effort to curb LGBT prevalence in the country.
2. “English is not an intellectual language that develops the mind and brain.” – BN-Rompin MP
Datuk Seri Hasan Arifin cautioned his fellow MPs that English could never create a great civilization as he pulled out an array of examples, NST reported.
“(Ancient civilizations) Rome, Persia, Arabia, China and India built their civilizations on their respective languages. English-speakers have never created (past) global civilizations.
“English is not an intellectual language that develops the mind and brain.
“The Sanskrit language from India is superior. The Urdu and Arab languages are superior. The Chinese language is superior,” said the Rompin MP in Dewan Rakyat on October 22 last year.
The BN MP said modern economies like Japan, Taiwan and non-English speaking European countries do not use the global language when developing their nations to become an economic powerhouse.
He spoke in Bahasa Malaysia in most of his speech but selectively used some English words such as “superior” to describe the non-English languages. The House received a floor of laughter after PH lawmaker Noor Amin Ahmad asked if Hasan knew the Bahasa equivalent word to “superior”.
3. “Child Marriage is Common, Let’s Focus on Bigger Issues Like LGBT.” – Pas Vice-President
Kelantan deputy mentri besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah told Malaysians to set aside child marriage issues during the peak of the 11-year-old child bride controversy in July last year.
“I feel this issue should not be sensationalised. Like I always said, the issue of Zina, children born out of wedlock, gays and lesbians, are bigger issues for the country.
“This issue is not wrong in religion, and should not be amplified as a national issue. It is an isolated case, not all men marry an 11-year-old,” the PAS vice-president was quoted as saying by Malay Mail.
Child marriage became a hot topic in Malaysia last year after a Kelantanese man wed an 11-year-old girl, which had gotten international attention.
Mohd Amar’s remark was later used by Muslim protesters in Kampung Baru, Kuala Lumpur on the same month, claiming that homosexuality and others alike posed more threat than child marriage.
4. 11-year-old child bride is nearly tall as her mom – DPM
Speaking of child marriage, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail was also embroiled in the controversy for failing to handle the pressing matter expediently.
Lawyers for Liberty executive director Latheefa Koya criticized Dr Wan Azizah, who is also the Minister of Women, Family and Community Development, for appropriating the 44-year-old Kelantanese man’s child marriage.
In an interview with BFM, Dr Wan Azizah said that the parents of the 11-year-old bride gave their consent on the marriage and she is well-taken care. At 16.42 mark of the interview, Dr Wan Azizah said, “She supposed to be 11 but the picture shows she nearly as tall as her mom”.
Latheefa slammed Dr Wan Azizah for that, stating her disappointment that the statement was coming from a former doctor.
“As a medical doctor, the deputy prime minister must know that although a child may show physical maturity, it does not mean that she has the mental awareness and understanding required for marriage and marital relations.
“It is excessively disturbing that Wan Azizah offers this physical maturity as a mitigating circumstance for the child’s marriage. It raises serious questions as to whether she is really committed to ending child marriages in Malaysia,” Latheefa was quoted as saying by FMT.
5. Allowing Hotels’ Pools to Provide Kids Swimming Lessons – Education Minister
Hotels are built for leisure and hospitality business purposes, but who knew this idea would be serious initiative coming from our Education Minister Dr Maszlee Malik.
In November last year, Dr Maszlee suggested that hotels should open up their pools for students to learn how to swim.
The move, he said, would enable more students to learn life-saving skills and increase safety awareness among them. It would be “an extra mile” if the hotels will open their pools for this purpose.
However, the Malaysian Association of Hotels (MAH) opposed the idea, saying that the pools are built for hotel guests’ leisure.
The association also said that the hotel pools are not equipped to handle a big group of children learning to swim as the pools do not meet the right standard of size, shape, depth and design for swimming lessons.
6. Our country does not have gay people – Tourism Minister
Tourism, Arts and Culture Minister Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi’s recent statement was so absurd and it even caught the whole world’s attention.
When speaking to the foreign press in Germany, Mohamaddin said homosexual people do not exist in Malaysia, Malay Mail reported.
The answer came after reporters asked the minister if Malaysia was tolerant of gays and Jews, to which Mohamaddin replied, “I don’t think we have anything like that in our country.”
An aide to the minister came out to clarify later that Mohamaddin was merely echoing the federal government’s stance on LGBT rights.
The unnamed aide added that, “Tourists coming to Malaysia like any other country are welcome regardless of their creed, sexuality, religion or colour.”
Following Mohamaddin’s statement, of what seemed to be a slip-out, MCA deputy president Datuk Dr Mah Hang Soon criticized the minister for damaging Malaysia’s reputation.
“He was asked by a reporter if Malaysia is safe for homosexuals. All he needed to say was that Malaysia is a safe country and every tourist is safe here.
“He just needed to say every tourist must respect the laws and cultural sensitivities of their host countries and it ends there,” Dr Mah was quoted as saying by The Star.
Did we miss any controversial statements made by our leaders? And what do you find most absurd among these six? Let us know in the comments below.