Malaysia

Don’t shame me with illegal rallies, Johor Sultan tells students

By Shannon Teoh
October 29, 2011

Students protest what is deemed as the wrongful dismissal of Prof Aziz Bari at the UIA campus in this file photo. — Picture by Choo Choy MayStudents protest what is deemed as the wrongful dismissal of Prof Aziz Bari at the UIA campus in this file photo. — Picture by Choo Choy MayKUALA LUMPUR, Oct 29 — The Johor Sultan warned students of Universiti Tun Hussein Onn Malaysia (UTHM) in Batu Pahat today that they would be disrespecting him by joining illegal rallies, according to a Bernama report today. 

Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar, who is chancellor of the university, said that such activities will threaten national stability. 

“We will not hesitate to resign as chancellor should any of our students be involved in such activities as it is better than having our name tainted by such acts that also shames the university’s reputation,” the state news agency quoted the monarch as saying at UTHM’s 11th convocation. 

The ruler said students should be grateful for the chance to gain knowledge instead of taking part in anti-government political activities. 

The Universities and University Colleges Act prohibits students from being politically active. 

But about 500 students at the International Islamic University (UIA) gathered at its Gombak campus last week to protest the suspension of law professor Abdul Aziz Bari for allegedly insulting the Selangor Sultan. 

It was the latest in a string of gatherings since tens of thousands poured into the streets of Kuala Lumpur on July 9 to support Bersih’s call for free and fair elections. 

Bersih had gone ahead in defiance of a government ban and promised police action that finally saw over 1,500 arrested, scores injured, and the death of an ex-soldier. 

Muslim NGOs also organised a gathering of a million faithful in Shah Alam earlier this month to rally against the “challenge of Christianisation” following repeated allegations of proselytisation by the church. 

About 5,000 turned up for the event which was held with police permission.