MELAKA: Islamic preacher Zakir Naik has been banned from speaking in Melaka, said the Malaysian state’s Chief Minister Adly Zahari.
Mr Adly said the state government wants to avoids any issue that could strain ties between races, the Star reported on Monday (Aug 19).
“We want to maintain this. So we decided not to allow Mr Naik to hold talks or gatherings here,” he was quoted as saying.
Last week, the northern state of Perlis banned him from speaking at an event, following public uproar over racially insensitive remarks which he had made.
The Indian national was also previously banned from Johor, Selangor, Penang, Kedah and Sarawak.
In addition, Sabah’s Chief Minister Mohd Shafie Apdal said Mr Naik would be banned from entering the state should there be reports of him having extremist views.
The controversial preacher holds Malaysian permanent residency and is wanted in India for charges of money laundering and hate speech.
Malaysia’s Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad on Sunday said it was “quite clear” Mr Naik wanted to participate in racial politics, the New Straits Times reported.
“He is stirring up racial feelings. The police will have to investigate whether it is causing tension; obviously, it is,” he said.
Dr Mahathir added that as a permanent resident, Mr Naik was not allowed to participate in politics.
“You can preach (religiously). But he wasn’t doing that,” he said.
“He was talking about Chinese going back to China and Indians going back to India. I have never said such things. But he did. That is politics.”
Earlier this month, Mr Naik responded to calls for his deportation by suggesting Malaysian Chinese should leave the country first as they were “old guests” of the country.
He also said Hindus in Malaysia enjoyed “100 times more rights” than Muslims in India and that they believed in the Indian government more than the Malaysian one.