KUALA LUMPUR – 12 local scholars, entrepreneurs, journalists and G25 members have stood up against the Muslim NGO’s “boycott non-Muslim products” campaign, claiming that such a move will hurt all Malaysians, including Muslims themselves.
They urged Malaysians to support local brands and products irrespective of race and religion in order to strengthen the country’s economy.
They pointed out that boycott in the name of race and religion was not only unpractical but would also be hypocritical in our globalized economy whereby consumers worldwide are buying products and brands from across the world.
Every community will be affected
They said in a joint statement that the campaign by some to boycott non-Muslim products was very unwise.
“Many non-Muslim companies hire large numbers of Muslim workers. Although it appears that the operations of non-Muslim companies will be affected, the chain reactions will actually affect every ethnic community.
“All the things we eat and use every day can be traced back to producers, founders and manufacturers of different ethnic groups and religions as a result of our globalized economy.
“How can we say for sure that we will only use products manufactured by people of our own race and religion?”
Instead of boycotting non-Muslim products and further dividing ourselves, they said Malaysians should stay united and practice inclusivity in our day-to-day life, such as buying products and brands by Malaysians.
Buy Malaysian first
“Our goal is to help Malaysian companies grow, reduce the goods prices and support affordably priced and high quality Malaysian products.”
They also said all profit-making companies must pay their taxes which would be used on things that would benefit Malaysians, including salaries paid to civil servants and public services sector such as medical care and education.
Unfortunately, they said some people unfamiliar with the operation of economy had advocated such a campaign of exclusivity to advance their dangerous agenda by fanning Muslim sentiments.
Among those signed the joint declaration were Mohamed Tawfik Ismail, son of former deputy prime minister the late Tun Dr Ismail, UCSI professor and Sin Chew Daily columnist Professor Dr Mohd Tajuddin Mohd Rasdi, Projek57 founder Syed Sadiq Albar, Universiti Malaya law professor Datuk Dr Shad Saleem Faruqi, and G25 member Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin.