Hishammuddin: JI terrorist, communist threats must be monitored
KUALA LUMPUR, July 21 — Any allegation involving the infiltration of deviant religious teachings or communist elements into society must be closely monitored as it affects national security, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said today.
The home minister told a press conference that this does not only apply to the opposition but the ruling pact as well.
“We view this issue in the context of national security. Whether it involves religious ideologies or infiltration into parties, whether the opposition or the government, we will investigate,” he said after a working visit to the Dang Wangi district police headquarters here.
Hishammuddin (picture) added that if the matter involves national security, it was not merely important to uncover proof but police action must be taken.
“When it comes to national security threats, this is something we monitor daily whether through the Special Branch or the Special Action Force (UTK),” the minister said.
He was responding to Thursday’s claim by Special Branch chief assistant director of the E2(M) national social extremist threat division Datuk Mohd Sofian Md Makinuddin that Jemaah Islamiyah (JI) terrorists and former communists have infiltrated the ranks of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) parties PAS and the DAP.
The minister had yesterday claimed ignorance over the matter, telling reporters that he could not confirm if Mohd Sofian’s allegation was true.
But DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang flayed Hishammuddin today for not being in the know, pointing out that the Special Branch unit under the police comes directly under the purview of the Home Ministry.
“It is the most cowardly, craven and irresponsible response from Hishammuddin... Is Hishammuddin admitting he is the lousiest home minister in the nation’s 54-year history?” Lim said in a statement.
Hishammuddin today appeared to dismiss his critics, however, but gave his assurance that matters of such national importance would not be hidden from the public.
“If it has to do with national security, I will inform the public and I view this in the context of national security,” he repeated.
In Thursday’s report by national news agency Bernama, Mohd Sofian had said that several leaders from PKR and the Socialist Party of Malaysia (PSM), a PR-friendly opposition party, are believed to have attended “secret meetings” with former Malayan Communist Party leaders in Bangkok and southern Thailand.
“The effect is new political ideas which have the potential of threatening the nation’s core values have spread.
“The movement receives support from foreign non-governmental organisations (NGOs) which assist in terms of finance, training locally and abroad as well as exposure to specific expertise in facing the general election,” he was quoted as saying.
Mohd Sofian added that the movement’s aim was to create local NGOs which would always be hostile to the government and create chaos to weaken the ruling government.
“In this matter, we worry that the opposition parties and NGOs play up controversial issues to stir hatred among the public towards the government by the time the elections come.
“Or (it’s) to increase demonstrations and incidents which can divert police attention... demonstrations will continue to be a trend in our country,” he had said.