KUCHING – The Sarawak government will not interfere with McDonald’s Malaysia’s policy to only allow halal-certified cakes into its premises, said Abdullah Saidol (pic).
The chief political secretary to Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem said as a business entity, McDonald’s Malaysia has every right to implement its policies as long as it did not contravene any laws or business guidelines.
The Semop assemblyman was responding to a statement by political secretary to the Chief Minister Michael Tiang who had called on the management of the fast food chain not to extend the policy to Sarawak.
“It should be noted that McDonald’s is a business entity and policies announced by the company is their business decision. The Sarawak government has no direct or indirect interest in McDonald’s, so why would we interfere with their business decision? Unless they have contravened some laws or business guidelines,” he said in a statement Saturday.
Abdullah, who is also state Barisan Nasional Backbencher Club chairman, added that Adenan had never made any comments nor issued a statement relating to the issue.
He further clarified that the statement by Tiang was made in the latter’s personal capacity.
Abdullah said the Chief Minister was more concerned about the people’s well-being, particularly the needs of the rural communities and getting more funds from Putrajaya to develop the state.
He added that it has always been the state government’s policy to ensure unity. He said he believes that majority of Sarawakians are mature and not bothered by such trivial issues.
“Racial and religious bigots are the last things we need in Sarawak. Efforts to maintain peace and harmony among our plural society should prevail over political agendas,” said Abdullah.
Last week, McDonald’s confirmed that it had implemented a policy barring cakes without halal certification into its premises, saying that this was a requirement by the Islamic Development Department (Jakim).
On Thursday, McDonald’s outlets in Miri took down the notices on halal-certified cakes after receiving a directive from the head office. The fast food chain has three outlets in Miri and 13 in total throughout the state.