This week, fugitive Islamic preacher Dr Zakir Naik was the topic on everyone’s lips as news spread fast and wide on his remarks calling Chinese Malaysians ‘old guests’ that should go back if the nation wants new guests to go.
“You know, someone called me a guest. So I said, before me, the Chinese were the guests. If you want the new guest to go first, ask the old guest to go back.”
“The Chinese aren’t born here, most of them. Maybe the new generations, yes.”
Zakir Naik via Malaysiakini.
Earlier, Zakir Naik also sparked an outcry for saying that Malaysian
Indians support the prime minister of India and not the prime minister of
His inflammatory statement sparked widespread outrage in the
last few days.
Even Malaysia’s Youth & Sports Minister, Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman took offence to Zakir Naik’s statement, saying:
“Yes. An attack on our Chinese and Indian brothers and sisters is an attack against all Malaysians.”
“It’s ridiculous to even think that my fellow Malaysians are my tetamu. They are my family for God’s sake. Enough is enough.”
Syed Saddiq, Youth & Sports Minister via Malay Mail.
Despite the racially charged squabbles of the past few
weeks, this incident has created a movement online where Malaysians of all
races were coming together to unite and supporting their fellow countrymen.
Here’s some of the heart-warming (and funny!) messages of unity we found across Malaysian internet:
Orang Cina Malaysia BUKAN TETAMU, tetapi warganegara Malaysia yang cintakan Negara bertuah ini.
Kekuatan Malaysia adalah kesatuan rakyatnya.
Cukup lah perlekehkan kesatuan & kesetiaan kita.
Saya kenal ramai orang cina & india yang sanggup mati pertahankan negara tercinta kita https://t.co/RlGkMipSYD
— Syed Saddiq (@SyedSaddiq) August 14, 2019
Translation: Chinese Malaysians are NOT GUESTS, but Malaysian citizens who love this abundant nation.
Malaysia’s strength is the unity of her people.
Enough with questioning our unity and loyalty.
I know many Chinese & Indians willing to die defending our beloved nation.
They are not tetamu.
They are MY family.
— Zharif B🇲🇾 (@zharifbadrul6) August 14, 2019
Sorry Zakir Naik, they are not guests. They are FAMILY.
— Adam Mukhriz (@amofficial77) August 14, 2019
— hxsm (@hxsm) August 15, 2019
My chinese boss today: “Aku tension lah dengan this whole Zakir Naik situation. Dia nak aku balik mana? Kampung aku Subang Jaya ah! And president aku Joe Flizzow!!!”
— your local pontianak (@karissalund) August 14, 2019
Translation: My Chinese boss today: “Tension lah with this whole Zakir Naik situation. Where does he want me to go back to? My kampung is Subang Jaya ah! And my president is Joe Flizzow!!!”
— Jack.Daniel’s (@haziqfikrey) August 14, 2019
I’m a Malaysian, the only place i will balik to is Malaysia. Ain’t nobody gonna change that
— Jin Lim (@Jinnyboy) August 14, 2019
Ini Malaysia, rumah kami Melayu, Cina & India. Biasalah adik bergaduh & tak bersependapat. Kau siapa sial? https://t.co/heH9YC8eAt
— Amir Izhar (@AmirIzhar9) August 14, 2019
Translation: This is Malaysia, the home of Malay, Chinese & Indian. It’s normal for siblings to fight & have different opinions. Who are you?
Dr Zakir Naik has crossed the line with his latest remarks. It’s totally indefensible. We can’t condone that. Our Indian and Chinese brothers are legit citizens of this nation state.
— Wan Fayhsal (@wanfayhsal) August 14, 2019
“Tetamu lama” Cina mereka ni family. Personally, in my family as well. Born and grew up here, nak suruh diorg balik mana? Yes we’ve had differences in the past, and evidently now, but they will remain as part of keluarga Malaysia.
You are not.
And no longer welcomed here. https://t.co/rTha1XtGxh
— A. Mu’iz (@MuizRazakMR) August 14, 2019
Dan apabila Malaysia terbentuk, mereka juga sebahagian daripada masyarakat yang diiktiraf sebagai ‘rakyat’ dan terlibat dalam PRU pertama.
Zakir Naik datang sebagai pelarian, kemudian menjadi tetamu. Tidak terlibat dalam nation building, dan kini menganggu keharmonian negara. pic.twitter.com/DjoOv6m9ZZ
— syaz (-.-) wan (@syazwnr) August 15, 2019
Translation: The Chinese and Indians were involved during the fight for independence and also the formation of the Federal Constitution (Prof Shad Saleem)
And when Malaysia was formed, they were also a part of the society known as ‘rakyat’ and voted in the first election.
Zakir Naik arrived as a fugitive and then became a guest. Not involved in nation building and now disturbing national peace.
Orang Cina kat Malaysia kalau kau tanya dia asal mana? Dia akan jawab Ipoh, Seremban, Alor Star atau Melaka.
Kalau tanya Zakir Naik, dia nak jawab asal mana?
Jangan buat kacau lah. Kenapa nak membenih benci?
— بوميلاڠيت (@bumilangit) August 14, 2019
Translation: If you ask Chinese Malaysians “Where are you from?” They will answer Ipoh. Seremban, Alor Setar or Malacca.
If you ask Zakir Naik the same question, what will he say?
Don’t cause trouble lah. Why do you want to plant seeds of hate?
These are my Chinese friends. They are not just a ‘guest’ in Malaysia. They are my family. They are the rightful Malaysians.
And you sir, are not.
Watch what you say and don’t disrespect my fellow Chinese friends like that. I choose them over you.
— Sakinah Al-Habshee🌻 (@serenitysakinah) August 14, 2019
The Chinese and Indian who were born here aren’t our guest as we formed Malaysia together. Zakir Naik, you’re the “guest” and you have to leave https://t.co/F41syyCAW5
— Aazeez (@ajisaazeez) August 15, 2019
Cina & India: I don’t want jawi and khat in school
Malay: Don’t want balik China la
Zakir Naik : Before chasing me, ask old guest to go back first.
Also Malay: Who do u think u are? Asking a legal citizen to go back. U go back la..
— penganggur (@jengjenjen) August 14, 2019
Perhaps the silver lining behind Zakir Naik’s racist outbursts is seeing thousands of Malaysians rejecting his hate speech & defending each other
Reading these tweets brings tears to my eyes. Thank you. 😢 Negara ini milik bangsa Malaysia. Zakir Naik jangan cabar perpaduan kita! pic.twitter.com/ayJfgmUTs4
— Leeroy Ting (@LeeroyTing) August 14, 2019
The government of India made a formal request to the Malaysian government in June 2019 to send back its citizen, Zakir Naik, to face money laundering charges at home.
In 2016, his foundation was banned in India following allegations of promoting religious division in the country.
The controversial preacher was granted a Malaysian PR back in 2015. Despite the official extradition request, Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said that we cannot send him back for “fear of being killed.”
Numerous ministers have also called for unity together with the deportation of Zakir Naik. However, it remains to be seen how the Malaysian government will react officially.
Despite it all, it feels good to know that Malaysians can be full of love and support for one another.
She puts the pun in Punjabi. With a background in healthcare, lifestyle writing and memes, this lady's articles walk a fine line between pun-dai and pun-ishing.