With the recent video uploaded on Malaysiakini showing controversial Islamic preacher Zakir Naik clearly indulging in a political ‘debate’ with a rowdy crowd in Kuala Lumpur, it raises many questions.
Certainly after the announcement – after an attempt to cover up his status in Malaysia – by the Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi who said Zakir Naik has been granted the Malaysian Permanent Residence status.
Zakir, who is on the run from the Indian authorities, is probably safe in Malaysia but legally speaking he should not be allowed to speak on the local political situation.
As a permanent resident, he is still a foreigner who cannot vote, and by right he must have signed a document which would have stated that he should not be involved in political rallies, discussions and should not be seen in rallies such as Bersih and so on.
Unless he did not sign such a document, which would be the prerogative of the Ministry indeed, and the public has the right to know since Zakir is a public figure who is meddling in local affairs.
In the video published by The Independent he is heard giving advice to locals on who to vote in the next general elections in Malaysia.
He clearly directed his comments towards ‘a leader who was corrupt and left the party to form his own party and joined hands with non-Muslims’.
There are two such leaders in Malaysia. One is Anwar Ibrahim and non-other than Mahathir Mohamad who both broke away from the Umno at some stage in their political career to form their own political formations.
Both formations are now in coalition with non-Muslim parties.
When the rowdy crowd stopped Zakir in his comments against the opposition, he was was told the government party is also in alliance with non-Muslims, he reaction was as if he was in disbelief of the statement from the audience.
He then used a terminology in Islam that says if there are two evil, chose the lesser of the evil to which some people clapped hands but this clearly did not satisfy the rowdy audience.
On the run Zakir
On the run from the Indian authorities, Zakir defied the Indian government on its attempts to ‘interrogate him’ saying he will not go to Bombay because he will be ‘tortured’.
At the conference in Kuala Lumpur last Sunday, Zakir told the Indian government to locate him in Malaysia.
News is out the Indian police is seeking Interpol assistance to curb his movements out of Saudi Arabia, after several summonses for him to appear before the authorities were ignored.
Indian news site Times of India reported Saturday that Zakir had been frequently travelling to Malaysia and Indonesia from Saudi Arabia.
However, it is apparent that there is no extradition treaty between Malaysia and India.