Saturday, April 26, 2008

Hishammuddin's apology draw criticisms

PEMUDA Umno chief Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein has apologised for his keris-wielding and keris-kissing incident at the party annual assembly of 2005 and 2006. The act had upset many non-Malays who viewed the act as provocative and unfriendly.

I'm not sure how the non-Malays view the apology but some of Hishammuddin's comrades in Umno questioned why the Pemuda chief had thought it necessary to offer the apology.

Soon after news of the apology was splashed on television and newspaper pages, many SMS started to fly: "Why? Why make the apology? It's not going to change anything. The act has already caused much damaged and we saw how this was manifested in the March 8 general election.

"It's a bit late in the day."

An Umno divisional leader said the apology made many party members unhappy. They said the Pemuda chief should instead explain to everyone that keris-kissing is not an act of provocation, unless the person doing it had that in mind.

The keris is a symbol of authority among the Malays. Hishammuddin's act of kissing the keris by itself was not an act of provocation, but when accompanied by fiery rhetorics and inflammatory statements, anyone would view it differently.

While the non-Malays still don't like his keris-kissing act (apology notwithstanding), Hishammuddin now finds his Umno comrades are just as unhappy for making the apology. When he first did it in 2005, there were already criticisms. When this was repeated, the criticisms became more vocal and widespread.

More than a symbol of authority, the keris represents sovereignty, especially in the royal palace. I'm sure we all remember the way His Majesty the King showed his respect of the keris when he was installed as the Yang DiPertuan Agong. It was an act of respect and done with much dignity.

If Hishammuddin had done it the same way, he wouldn't have been criticised the way he did. It's unfortunate. An SMS I received today lamented at the fact that a ritual that's so 'malay' and done within a Malay environment could be heatedly criticised.

Its quite ironical. While Hishammuddin apologised and tried to assuage the feelings of non-Malays, he came under fire from his party comrades instead. Another SMS, from a Johor grassroot leaders, with a tone that suggests disgust and disappointment, questioned whether Hishammuddin is worthy to be voted as an Umno vice-president.

Hishammuddin had already declared his willingness to be nominated to contest for one of the three VP posts in the December party poll. He will have to see whether the apology would have any serious bearing on his bid.

There was another apology that also made its way into the pages of most newspapers. His deputy, Rembau MP Khairy Jamaluddin, received an apology from news portal Malaysiakini.

This followed news report by the portal which reported that Khairy had initially lost in the contest against PKR candidate Badrul Hisham Shaharin during the general election. The portal had also reported that a recount was held to determine the winner.

In the apology, Malaysiakini said: "We have come to know that such a recount did not take place. As such, we would like to apologise to Khairy for publishing that assertion in our subsequent stories."

Khairy's contest with blogger Cikgu Bard came under the spotlight right from the beginning. The PM's son in law won with a majority of 5,726 votes. His opponent meanwhile has filed an election petition at the High Court in Seremban on Friday, seeking to declare the result null and void.


Anonymous said...

I think he is out for VP post. There are other better candidates -Rais, Zahid, Khir Toyo, Ghani Khaled Nordin and few others. Itupun kalau Muhyiddin tak tanding VP. Even if Hishamuddin stands for MT, he will be between 15 to 20 placing. Itu pun kalau nasib baik. Assalamualaikum pada U lah. Kalau boleh, we don't want to see U in the Umno leadership line up. enough is enough.


Seorang Datuk , perwakilan UMNO dan saya dah lupa namanya, bercakap dalam perhimpunan agung UMNO seketika dulu berkata " Minda orang Melayu dulu ialah di kelas pertama , tapi melayu kini mindanya di kelas ketiga ".

Anonymous said...

aiseyman, ye ke tok mat? saya tak ikuti perkembangan media arus perdana, terbaca blog tok mat ni terkejut pulak.. agak mengecewakan, terlajak kata itulah jadinya..harap punya harap langsung tertiarap..

Anonymous said...

Datuk Pahit Manis,

Nampaknya pemimpin Melayu semakin hari semakin mengakui kelemahannya dan tunduk kepada kaum lain. Mereka tidak lagi berani mempertahankan yang hak dan yang benar. Mereka tidak lagi peduli perasaan dan jiwa kaum sendiri.

Manakala kita wajib menghormati kehadiran dan pendirian kaum lain, janganlah pula sampai kita menggadai maruah kaum sendiri!

CT Tanjung Perak

A Voice said...

Thats dumb Hishamuddin. Sheer dumb!

But was he asked to apologise?

Thats probably happening.

Da Real Deal said...

Datuk, he will have a horrendous time contesting for any post in UMNO. He won't even carry Johor Sir. An article from an UMNO grassroots leader @ says it all.

Norizan Sharif said...

Sebenarnya ramai yang terkejut dengan permohonan maaf tersebut. Saya kira ia adalah sesuatu yang tidak perlu. Pemimpin Melayu harus berani mempertahankan sesuatu yang benar. Saya tidak nampak di mana silapnya DS Hishamuddin & keris. Masalah kita sekarang ialah persepsi dan komunikasi. Ini yang harus diatasi, bukannya keris. Kalau begitu, nampaknya selepas ini tidak ada lagilah pemimpin Melayu yang berani bergambar bersama keris!

tarings said...

Funny how ketuanan Melayu being championed by mentally challenged goons. While the majority of Melayu don't even get within a sniff of the supposed rewards that could've came with that ketuanan. In fact, we could be disadvantaged and stigmatised for being associated with the ketuanan call, and of course, the championing morons.

Ketuanan my butt.

Anonymous said...

Damage had been done. Hisham should have thought and sought apologies two years ago. That would be the best time. This is just an after-thought which do not hold water. He had not caused problems to the non-Malays, but probably devastation to the very party he belongs. Anyway, it's best for him to concentrate on business or teaching.

Anonymous said...

awang belangga:

Melayu ni rasanya in a state of flux. Saya harap pihak Pahit Manis dapat kupas persoalan ini "Apakah Melayu Sudah Tak Mahu Jadi Melayu?" Melayu ni sangat mulia sebenarnya, menjadi pemimpin yang adil.Masyarakat China dan India mengakui hakikat ini. Cuma yang bermasalah Perkhidmatan Awam terlalu Malay-centric; elok lantik non-Malays yang berkelayakan jadi KSU, TKSU, Ketua Pengarah. Selainnya Melayu patut contohi masyarakat China yang tidak apologetic mengenai budaya Cina, ada sekolah China contohnya.
Elok juga dipelajari the entrepreneurial zeal of the Chinese..
Tuan Pahit Manis, anda perlu lebih ketengah bersama tokoh-tokoh seperti Malik Munip. Sdra Malik ni ilmuan ulung. Kita perlukan orang sebegeni yang bercakap persoalan Melayu tanpa membangkitkan kemarahan rakan-rakan bukan Melayu.
Buatlah semacam think-tank, Sdra Pahit Manis, jemput Malik Munip, Johan Jaafar, Kadir Jasin, Ahiruddin Attan, Shamsul Akmar (mana hilangnya beliau sekarang?).

Anonymous said...


You are right. It is not an issue at all. Brandishing a kris, to Hishammudin, is juts a act of getting support. You are not serious, are you Dato Hisham?

Lets keep it in the closet, the isuue I mean, not the kris, because you will never believe that Hisamuddin was really `the kris's material'. No way brother, no big deal, I wont believe a minute of it.

It is just a rhetoric exercise. Tiong Lai, Samy and Kit Siang are just being `cheap thrillers too.

Ramli Mohd Yunus
Alor Star,Kedah.

Anonymous said...

Lebih penting daripada keris adalah tangan yang memegang keris. Disana datangnya keistemewaan keris. Itu saja. Orang melayu juga kena sedar. Kalau lim guan eng memegang penyapu dan berkata penyapu itu untuk menyapu orang melayu,apa rasa kita? lebih penting daripada keris adalah hati dan otak. Kalau tiada hati dan otak, keris tak boleh pakai la brader!

Anonymous said...

People should read this.