Much has been said about Datuk Dr. Hasan Ali, the former Selangor state commissioner of the party and (previously) a state Exco in the Pakatan Rakyat state government, in the past few weeks. Some had claimed that the reason for the decision to sack him was because of outside pressure from PAS’ partners, DAP and PKR and that the PAS leadership had bowed down to others. Others have said that the reason Hasan Ali was sacked was because of his so-called “activism” against apostasy and the set-up of a counter-apostasy unit borne by the department under his portfolio (religious affairs) and therefore Hasan Ali’s sacking is a detriment to the cause of Islam itself. Even more ludicrous is the claim by Hasan Ali himself that he was sacked on the orders of Anwar Ibrahim!
It is rather surprising that the Western media started to call Ennahda party in Tunisia as a ‘moderate Islamist party’. The same label has been used to describe the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, to differentiate them from the ‘radical’ Salafi parties. It was not the case a couple of years ago and unimaginable by many considering we are just ten years post-911; the tragic bombing of the WTC in New York. ‘Moderate’ Islamists appears to be a new jargon to describe the ‘not so bad’ Muslim guys who were previously designated with a plethora of Islamphobic labels by the same media which included among others ‘the radical Islamists’, ‘extremist banned group’, “radical Islamic fundamentalist”, “jihadist militants”, etc.
Perhaps it was by the stroke of fate that I became a father two weeks earlier than expected. My son, Mu’awiyah Rayyan Nieshaem, was born on the 12th of October 2011 at around 5.45pm and from that point of time onward, I shoulder the additional responsibility of the care and well-being of my offspring, which includes education. As I hold my sleeping son in my hands hours after the delivery, I ponder upon aspects of my struggle thus far and how I can ensure a Better Malaysia for my newborn son.
I have always shown a keen interest in Malaysian politics ever since I was ten. As far as I am concerned, someone who is not interested in or has apathy towards the Malaysian political situation is simply being unpatriotic to the highest degree, which is unthinkable to me. Patriotism towards the country, however, is not to be confused with asabiyyah, or tribal inclinations which the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and Islam has abolished.