Malaysia’s attorney general Abdul Gani bin Patail is no stranger to controversy. Since assuming the title in 2002, he’s been involved in handling Malaysia’s most complicated legal affairs – including the recent case of two secular Chinese bloggers who inspired outrage by posting a picture of themselves eating pork with the “halal” logo next to it. Unfortunately for those bloggers, it looks like that old hog Mazanah Mohammad Zain, who called for them to be punished, will get her wish thanks to Patail.
In 1998, Gani was chosen to be the lead prosecutor against the deputy prime minister, Anwar Ibrahim, on charges of corruption and sodomy. I can totally understand corruption being illegal, but there’s nothing wrong with two dudes getting it on. However, it would seem that Muslims can’t stay out of each other’s business (or each other), so sharia-based laws like Malaysia’s sodomy ban are often seen in Islamic countries. Gani was accused of fabricating evidence against the victim, but that accusation never held its weight in court.
In the recent case involving the bloggers who ate pork, Gani declared that they should be held in custody because “they have the potential to upload content that could stir public anger.” The bloggers face charges of sedition and inciting religious hatred, and could face up to 8 years behind bars if convicted. Yep, eight years for eating pork and making fun of bizarre Islamic dietary traditions. Despite this case and numerous others like it serving as evidence to the contrary, we in the west still see rabid liberals screeching about how “Islam’s just a religion and it’s tolerant; you’re the bigoted one!” As for Gani’s comment that anyone who could upload content that would incite anger belongs behind bars – uhh, everyone can upload stuff onto the internet; have fun arresting your entire country.
Here’s a little gem I found while doing research for this piece: