Tuesday, June 27, 2006
posted by PabloPabla at 5:16 pm

It was reported in the Star Online today that the state of Kelantan will offer RM10,000.00 cash to each Muslim preacher who marries an orang asli woman and naturally converts her. Apparently, apart from a fixed monthly allowance of RM1,000.00, muslim preachers in the state also receive free accomodation and a four-wheel drive vehicle.

The State Religious Affairs committee chairman (Hassan Mahamood - PAS - Tawang) was quoted as saying that the state government was unhappy with the conversion rate of the orang asli, who traditionally do not subscribe to any main religion.

It is quite obvious from the above that:-

  1. PAS does not believe in freedom of religion in this Country and is going on a crusade to convert non-muslims (beginning with the orang asli) through monetary incentives. Rate of conversion from one religion to another (be it non-muslim to muslim, buddhist to christians, hindu to buddhist, buddhist to hindu, etc) is not the business of the government of the day. Conversions should be left to the respective religious bodies and the government should only interfere if the ways and means of conversion have resulted in a real threat to national security (violent protests, crime based on religious reasons). Apart from that, PAS should concentrate on efforts to improve the standard of living of the Kelantanese people. Why else is Kelantan lagging behind in developments?

  2. Whilst it is not reported the source of the monetary incentives, one suspects that it could be from the tax payers' money. If indeed, it was from the tax payers' money, why should non-muslims fund this exercise? If it was from funds contributed by muslims, I have no quarrels. Even so, is there not a better way to utilise the funds (eg. islamic education, etc)?

  3. Thirdly, with such tempting monetary incentives, is it foreseeable that the muslim preachers would enter into marriages of convenience? Is there likely to be "real love" between the two?

  4. And we all know this:- once the orang asli spouse converts into a muslim, it is nigh impossible to denounce the religion.

  5. What next after the orang aslis? The other non-muslim races in Kelantan?

Enough said.

You make your assumptions and conclusions from the report. I just find this piece of news a bit hard to swallow.