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Wanita MCA: “Talibanisation” by PAS (Updated 4pm)

Updated 4pm on 7 June 2009

SHAH ALAM, 7 June 2009: “Talibanisation” — that’s what Wanita MCA considers the views of some PAS delegates who wanted women reporters at the PAS muktamar to cover their heads and be segregated from men.

Chew Mei Fun (Source: wanita.mca
Calling it “narrow-minded thinking”, Wanita MCA chief Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun said she was “aghast” at the complaints against women reporters by some PAS delegates at the Islamist party’s muktamar.

“[Such thinking] perpetuated by PAS delegates is the forefront of the Talibanisation of Malaysia should PAS ever seize federal power.

“Apart from their vehement insistence on establishing an Islamic state which calls for hudud and syariah laws to be imposed even on non-Muslims, what is equally worrisome is that PAS intends to regulate women, thus subjugating them as inferior to men,” Chew said in a press statement today.

“At all costs, Malaysia must prevent the spread of Talibanisation led by PAS,” she added.

The Star reported that on 6 June, during the second day of the muktamar, a few delegates had complained that women reporters did not have their heads covered and were mingling freely with their male colleagues.

Chew said PAS should not have double standards against women journalists, who were usually decently attired when covering assignments.

She said during the Bukit Gantang by-election, women reporters followed PAS candidate Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin on his campaign rounds, and there were no complaints about their attire then.

“There appears to be double standards in PAS whereby when they want votes and publicity for their election campaign, they do not object to the audience and members of the media of both genders sitting and mingling together.

“But at their AGM (muktamar), they demand female members of the media to cover up and deny them the freedom to double check their notes with their male counterparts. PAS should be aware that sometimes journalists would refer to each other’s notes for clarity,” Chew, a former journalist, said. 

The reporters’ area, located in the same hall where the PAS delegates were

She also said PAS should understand that in any working environment, it was natural for men and women to meet each other.

Chew challenged the DAP and Parti Keadilan Rakyat, who together with PAS form the Pakatan Rakyat, to “prove their sincerity” in rejecting PAS’s extremism.

However, Dr Lo’lo Mohamad Ghazali, a PAS central working committee member, tried to moderate these views from her party when she spoke during the debates on resolutions today.

Addressing complaints about female reporters’ attire, she said not every woman was required to cover their “aurat” and the matter depended on when one was ready to do so.

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9 Responses to “Wanita MCA: “Talibanisation” by PAS (Updated 4pm)”

  1. Right2Choose says:

    Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun, this is a trivial issue. PAS can ask but not force this issue. I think the follow up by Dr. Lo Lo kind of balances this up. I doubt PAS can take over the federal government on its own. Even if PR comes to power, there will always be DAP there as a check and balance.

    Unlike in BN where Umno holds sway over almost everything and MCA and the other parties never stand up to Umno over decisions that affect the other communities. At least in the PR, the component parties are more vocal when it comes to issues that effect them.

  2. goldenscreen says:

    Chew Mei Fun, if you want to prove yourself useful to stop the Talibanisation of Malaysia, then please state your stand on the unity government of PAS and Umno to form a supra-Malay supremacy government in Malaysia – an idea gathering steam from Shafie, Khairy, Mukhriz and other Umno leaders. What is MCA’s stand on the issue?

    What does MCA intend to do to stop the worst Taliban elements in PAS (aka the pro-Umno conservative faction) from joining forces with the worst elements in Umno (aka the ultra racist faction) to form the worst government of Malaysia (aka Islamic radicals + Malay ultras)?

    In fact what is your stand or MCA’s stand on the seditious race baiting of Awang Selamat from Utusan Malaysia? I don’t believe I have heard any noises from your side on Awang Selamat spreading racial hatred and discrimination, Awang Selamat who is given prominent space to spread his fascist ideology in the Umno owned and controlled mouthpiece. Utusan Malaysia that is openly rooting for the victory of the pro-Umno faction in PAS against the pro-Pakatan faction in PAS.

    And let me remind you Chew Mei Fun, most of the Taliban-types in PAS come from the pro-Umno faction (specifically those aligned to Terengganu PAS) and it is this same faction that Umno is willing to form a unity government with. Where does that leave MCA?

    We in Pakatan Rakyat have a clear conscience when it comes to supporting PAS. We are in support of the more moderate pro-Pakatan Erdogan faction in PAS. We were rooting for the professionals to triumph but sadly that was not the case. Meanwhile Umno couldn’t hide its happiness that the conservatives won (albeit narrowly).

    So instead of speaking to us, first speak and bring up the issue with your big brother Umno.

  3. devil says:

    The success of the last election had got to the Talibans’ heads. If this is not checked, it will be trouble for PKR and DAP in the next election. As it is, MCA is starting to exploit the matter.

  4. Eric says:

    Thank you Chew Mei Fun for such a brilliant demonstration that the best thing we can do to the BN and Malaysia is to send BN into the federal opposition.

    Ever since she was sacked by her PJU voters, Chew Mei Fun has been promoted to a fantastic job in Pempena (5-figure salary, car and chauffeur) and started opening her mouth on issues including women’s (like above). When she was still an MP, she would not move her lips on anything remotely different from Umno’s viewpoint.

    1Black Malaysia. Democracy First. Elections Now.

  5. tebing tinggi says:

    Talibanisation – it might be good for Malaysia.

  6. >_< says:

    Don’t talk about things you don’t know la MCA lady.

    Maybe in modern Malaysia it’s considered normal to be seen in public without our tudung, to be in such close quarters with the opposite sex, etc. but PAS is not wrong in asking this because it is what Islam commands!

  7. myop101 says:

    Do you wear shoes when you walk into someone’s home? It is not acceptable here but it is common in the west. Does it mean they are wrong to do so?

    Similarly, this is a PAS muktamar and they set the rules and conduct in such proceedings. If one finds it uncomfortable, yes, by all means voice it out but don’t expect the host to be obliging all the time.

    As for by-elections, isn’t it obvious? It is a general public affair where PAS cannot possibly regulate an act by a member of the general public in a general public area, right? If PAS starts stopping cars to ensure no khalwat incidents and force women to walk on the right side of the road while the men are on the left during a by-election, then yes, I am a bit worried.

    Any reasonable adult will know how to differentiate these two, what more to ensure the proper etiquette is followed.

  8. Reza says:


    The fact that PAS is asking is proof of their fanaticism and disrespect to the institution of democracy and free speech and if they had their way I’m sure they would force the issue. I remain skeptical of the so called “liberal” image of PAS, as I believe it only to be a ploy to garner the non-Muslim votes. I do not believe this image represents their true colours, which will only be seen when they come to power. I only hope that their support doesn’t grow, but I’m not going to hold my breath. At the rate Islamic fundamentalism is growing in Malaysia, there might come a day when DAP and PKR are no longer strong enough to keep them in check. And if this day comes, I foresee that Malaysia will most likely become a Taliban state.

  9. I think some people are being too naive in denying everything that Chew Mei Fun is saying to the point of going off topic here, and even thinking that the only woman on PAS’s Central Committee can moderate the entirety of PAS.

    Even more naive is the fact that commentators here think that DAP can actually regulate PAS. Well, that would be true if PAS were to form a government with the PR instead of Umno.

    But what if PAS forms their unity government with Umno?

    Will DAP be there for checks and balances as well? Of course not.

    Instead, one must look at what pull the other component parties within the BN have to deny PAS and Umno from forming a government that is radically right wing.

    And in such a case, I doubt MCA, MIC, PPP or even Gerakan can do much, unless they decide to break with Barisan and go Independent.

    So the question for Chew Mei Fun would be this: If PAS were to join the government, under the so called Taliban-style ruling of the party, would she, as a representative of the MCA, put forth a call to break away from Barisan Nasional since it’s against every single thing the party stands for?

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