Malaysia: LGBT worse than child marriage, say protesters at Malay rights rally

THE scourge of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community is a much bigger problem compared to the issue of child marriages, according to participants of a rally defending Malays and Muslims’ rights.

Protestors who gathered for the Himpunan Kebangkitan Ummah rally in Kelab Sultan Sulaiman yesterday slammed the criticisms against child marriages, while acceptance for the LGBT community grows.

They took minister in charge of religious affairs, Mujahid Yusof Rawa, to task for declaring that the LGBT community had the same rights as any other citizen as long as they didn’t flout any laws.

“At least child marriages save the brides from poverty and so on; LGBT doesn’t save anything,”   said a protestor who only wanted to be known as Kak Pah. “Which is worse, marrying your child legally, or the perverted scourge of LGBT?”

The case of a 42-year-old man from Kelantan who took an 11-year-old Thai girl for his third wife last month elicited calls for the new Pakatan Harapan (PH) government to outlaw child marriages. The man had wed the young girl according to Muslim rites in Golok, Thailand, without the consent of his first two wives. Activists are demanding that the groom, who was slapped with a fine, be charged for sexually grooming the young bride before marrying her.

But most of yesterday’s rally-goers dismissed the outcry by children’s rights groups as over-the-top. “They’re just blowing up the matter on purpose, when in fact it is an isolated case compared to LGBT,”   said 48-year-old Mohd Zahid Abd Ghani.  Read more via Malaysian Insight

2,000 attend Kuala Lumpur rally to defend Malay rights

KUALA LUMPUR - Close to 2,000 supporters of Malay political parties and groups gathered on Saturday (July 28) at a rally in Kampung Baru, a symbolic Malay enclave of Malaysia’s capital city, claiming that their racial and religious interests are under threat.

The event drew leaders from Umno, part of the former ruling Barisan Nasional, as well as PAS, the country’s largest Islamic party.

The organisers claimed that the interests of the Malay Muslim majority are being eroded after the Pakatan Harapan coalition led by Tun Mahathir Mohamad won the elections in May.

“Those who are speaking loudly today dare to threaten and insult our race and religion,” said Darul Islah Welfare Organisation (Perkid) president Masridzi Sat.

The event was held at the Sultan Sulaiman Club, where Malay leaders decided to form Umno over seven decades ago and just a stone’s throw from where the May 13, 1969 race riots began.

Among those who turned up were PAS secretary general Takiyuddin Hassan and information chief Nasrudin Hasan as well as Umno supreme council member Lokman Adam, who is the party’s Sungai Kandis by-election candidate.

But the surprise was the appearance of former Umno minister Rais Yatim, who is now a member of Dr Mahathir’s Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM). Read more via Straights Times