MCCBCHST Calls For Prayers As The Nation Goes To The Polls

As the nation goes to the polls, the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) calls upon all concerned Malaysians especially our own Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Sikh and Taoist communities to say special prayers in these critical times in the life of the nation.

During this time, let us pray that candidates for the General Elections will:

  • Live up to the common religious values which constitute the moral underpinning of the nation;
  • Undertake to serve all of their constituents if elected;
  • Campaign with goodwill and harmony founded on mutual respect, understanding, consultation and dialogue;
  • Strive to ensure greater national unity founded on the protection of the fundamental liberties and human rights of all Malaysians with justice and fairness for all.

MCCBCHST calls on all Malaysians to

  • Invest time and energy to fulfil their responsibilities as citizens and be at their respective polling stations to be able to cast their votes;
  • Study the elections manifestos of all contesting parties and candidates with discernment;
  • Cast their votes wisely without fear or favour according to their own conscience;
  • Be mindful of and to impress upon the candidates the critical issues of our national life including the following:
  1. The judiciary and the police force must be independent in carrying out their constitutional duties;
  2. The constitutional guarantees of religious freedom have been badly infringed upon over the years and in recent times despite numerous meetings which religious bodies such as the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism have been having with the authorities at the highest levels of government. Therefore,
  • The sincerity of verbal assurances by the authorities must be demonstrated by actual implementation so that every bona fide religious community can fulfil their respective religious obligation;
  • Arbitrary actions in blatant contravention of the Constitutional guarantees of religious freedom must stop;
  • No religious community should be subjected or forced to conform to the religious rules of another religion. Religious freedom is the very essence of justice and fairplay and forms the very foundation of any great democratic nation. National unity and integration will be adversely affected if no proper regard is given to matters of religious freedom. A 50-year old independent nation should rightly be expected to get its act together in regard to this.
  1. The Federal Constitution’s integrity should be protected so that it will not lose its position as the guarantor of the rule of law and the people’s interest;
  2. The parliamentary democracy system of the nation is premised on the respective roles played by the ruling party and the loyal opposition. Both are needed to ensure that democratic principles and dynamics are alive for the good of the country providing the necessary checks and balances one to the other spurring the nation to greater standards of transparency and progress.

The religious communities within MCCBCHST are in earnest prayer that whichever side win or lose in the coming electoral exercise, may the people of Malaysia be the real winners when their concerns and aspirations will be addressed and resolved and election promises are kept to the benefit of all.

May our country be blessed with justice, peace, national unity and Prosperity!

Dated this 21st day of February 2008

(signatures – President, Deputy President, Vice-Presidents (3), Hon. Secretary)

The members of the Council are:
Buddhists – Malaysian Buddhist Association, Buddhist Missionary Society of Malaysia, and Sasana Abhiwurdhi Wardhana Society
Christians – The Christian Federation of Malaysia comprising the Catholic Bishops’ Conference, Council of Churches Malaysia & National Evangelical Christian Fellowship
Sikhs – Malaysian Gurdwara Council, Sikh Naujawan Sabha Malaysia & Khalsa Diwan Malaysia
Hindus – Malaysia Hindu Sangam
Taoists – Federation of Taoist Associations Malaysia

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