“This will open the door to accusations that the government is now bringing the state’s treatment of other religions on par with Islam which is the only religion acknowledge by the constitution. This is extremely dangerous,” he wrote in his blog aptly called Tangents: Restless Musings Of A Malay Mind on Sunday [see here PDF].
According to A.M Ubaidah giving away half a million ringgit to the church is certainly unwise. Here’s why:
The government was not responsible for the arson attack. Of course, one could claim the government is ultimately responsible, but that is like saying the government of Kelantan should be blamed for flooding in the state!
On the above, paying the RM500k gives the impression that the government is taking ultimate responsibility for the arson attack!
If the government wanted to do something for the church to ease their suffering, they needn’t have bothered with the RM500k as to churches in Malaysia, permits to locate churches are more valuable than money, and the Metro Tabernacle has been applying to relocate. Just expedite it for them!
The church premises would have been insured. So, what with the intentions to relocate and everything, this arson attack may have been a boon for the church insurance wise! What is then the need for the government to shore up the church’s finances with public money?
The Metro Tabernacle could have just made a claim to the largest landowner on Earth for damages, the largest landowner being the Roman Catholic Church! What with the church attack being due to the Catholic Herald magazine’s court case in the first place, I think they have a case!
He further argued the donation could prompt Hindus the right to claim for compensation for their demolished temples and encourage arson for the sake of gaining state funds for rebuilding.