Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has claimed that UMNO is "not a racist party"
The Prime Minister, who was in the royal town to launch the new UMNO Muar division building, also stressed on his previous pro-"red shirts" rally statements, reiterating that the protest was a peaceful, non-racist one
The Prime Minister also touched on the Sept 16 rally in Kuala Lumpur and denied that the gathering was racist in nature.
“The gathering was a peaceful event and was held in support of the government.”
“UMNO is not just strong in rural areas but also in urban areas,” he said, adding that the gathering was peaceful.
Najib said that UMNO respects the other races but would not accept if its leaders were insulted or the dignity of the Malays were threatened.
Apart from championing the peaceful "red shirts" rally, the prime minister has also openly declared that UMNO has always been keen on working together with other races and parties
"The Malays in UMNO have always (worked) together with non-Malays...the power sharing concept is still firmly upheld by UMNO as it will ensure the country's future," said Najib when opening the new Muar UMNO division building in Jalan Meriam today.
When addressing the crowd of 3,000 UMNO and Barisan Nasional leaders and members, Najib urged them to uphold the spirit of the party's struggle, which has been its strength all these years.
He said while certain quarters accused the party of being racist, the Malays in UMNO were always together with non-Malays under the Barisan Nasional concept of power sharing.
In the midst of talking about working together with other races, Najib reminded Malaysians that there were "no bloody keris (dagger)" at the "red shirts" rally
"During the rally, there were no posters to incite hatred of other races, no posters of bloody keris, and this means it was a rally to support the government," Najib was quoted by Bernama as saying at a Muar UMNO event today.
Najib has been associated with the “bloody keris” after it was claimed he threatened "to bathe the keris in Chinese blood" at an UMNO Youth rally in the lead up to Ops Lallang in 1987.
Summing up his speech while officiating the new UMNO building in Muar, Najib urged the people to support the biggest party in the ruling coalition, equating the people's success as a direct result of the party's hard work
He said the success of the people was a result of the party which never stopped working for the people and nation.
He said he had met many people who were successful in their careers and attributed their success to the efforts of the party and the present government.
"This is because this is UMNO's struggle and because it was born in this palace which had served the nation," he said.
"UMNO was not born by the roadside, UMNO was not born by the hillside but was founded at Johor Istana Besar in 1946," he said when opening Muar UMNO building today.
Prior to the launch, Najib attended a one-hour meeting with the Sultan of Johor at Istana Bukit Serene
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said his audience with the Sultan of Johor, Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar today forged closer ties between the Federal and state governments.
"I had an audience with the Sultan of Johor at Istana Bukit Serene." Also present was the Tunku Mahkota Johor. The one hour meeting will forge closer ties between the state government and Federal government," Najib said in Facebook posting which included a photograph of him with Sultan Ibrahim and Tunku Ismail.
The meeting between the ruler and Najib started at about 11.30am. It was a private programme during Najib's visit to Johor today.
The recent months have seen the Johor royalty, especially the Sultan and the crown prince, being very forthright and critical on their views about the Malaysian politics
Tuanku Mahkota Johor vehemently criticised PM Najib Razak when he flaked out of a 1MDB dialogue titled 'Nothing2Hide' in June due to security reasons
"How can you have a dialogue called 'Nothing2Hide' featuring a person who has everything to hide?
"Obviously he won't show up," Tunku Ismail had said in a June 5 posting on the Johor Southern Tigers Facebook page, the re-branded name of the Johor football team under his leadership.
Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz came to Najib’s defense, warning the crown prince to “stay out of politics” or else he will be “whacked”
The Star Online reported Tourism and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz telling Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim to "stay out of politics" or risk getting "whacked".
Nazri today said Tunku Ismail as a member of the royalty, should "keep out of politics because otherwise, he will be subjected to the same rule and we will whack him", according to The Star Online.
"Rulers and royal families are not above the law. If you want to be a politician then say so, so we can hit you back for what you say," Nazri was also quoted saying.
Nazri's statements and warnings to the Tunku Mahkota Johor led to him being probed under the Sedition Act.
The debacle ended with Tuanku Mahkota Johor's silent response to Nazri's warnings in a video posted on the Johor Souther Tigers' Facebook page
Meanwhile, following the controversial "red shirts" rally that UMNO has openly supported, the Johor Sultan issued a warning to all racists, stressing that there is no room for racism in his state
“Let me reiterate, there is no place for hatred and racism here in Johor Darul Ta’zim. It was never welcomed, nor will I ever welcome haters and racists here in Johor.
"If anyone who want to practise hatred and racism in Johor Darul Ta’zim, the home of the Malays, Chinese and Indians – Bangsa Johor, please leave Johor immediately. That is an order!" said Johor Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar.
"Anyone who creates disharmony and spreads hatred here by promoting racism, will have to deal with me personally. Take this a warning.
“This is not the stone age, do not be ungrateful, the Malays, Chinese and Indians, all played their part. Johor Darul Ta’zim is home to the Malays, Chinese and Indians, they are Bangsa Johor," he said.
However, Education Minister Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid has defended the "red shirts" rally by saying that the Malays "have been pushed against the wall" after the Bersih 4.0 rally
UMNO Supreme Council member Datuk Seri Mahdzir Khalid said incidents during the Bersih 4 rally dominated by one race had aroused the feelings of the Malays who decided to join the rally.
"The Malays also have feelings. Many joined the rally not because of incitement by their leaders but feel that the Malays have been 'pushed against the wall'," the education minister told reporters after opening the Padang Terap Veteran UMNO division meeting at Pengkalan Tok Mas near Kuala Nerang today.
"What are their motives and intentions. They claim the rally was to reject Datuk Seri Najib. By rejecting Datuk Seri Najib, they are also rejecting the Malays."
Citing recent events, Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan has urged Malaysians to be grateful for being able to live in peaceful, war-free conditions
Malaysians should be thankful for being able to live in peace, harmony and free from war, said Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan.
He said the peace and harmony enjoyed despite of the religious and cultural differences in this country could only be achieved from the pillars of social justice, respect and hope for a better future.
However he said, Malaysians could not take these matters for granted as it was obvious that the element of hatred and disunity were spreading among the people particularly in the peninsula.
Giving example of Bersih 4 and 'Himpunan Rakyat Bersatu' rallies, he said both were not done in a proper way and it disrupted the nation's peace and harmony.
Malaysia has been under a great deal of unrest lately. The racially slanted, "red shirts" rally that was held on Malaysia Day saw a great deal of racial issues being invoked:
However, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has been stressing that the rally was peaceful and that Malays must be respected by all:
Meanwhile, UMNO Supreme Council member Tan Sri Annuar Musa has openly declared that he "is a racist"