Friday February 28, 2020
Home Lead Story Malaysian Rap...

Malaysian Rapper’s Dog Video Sparks Claim of Insulting Islam

"I am not afraid because I believe Malaysia has justice,"

0
//
islam
Wee Meng Chee, left, a Malaysian rapper popularly known as Namewee, is escorted by plainclothes policemen on his arrival at the magistrate court in Penang, Malaysia. VOA

Malaysian police said a popular ethnic Chinese rapper has been detained over complaints that his latest music video featuring dancers wearing dog masks and performing “obscene” moves insulted Islam and could hurt racial harmony.

It was the second time in two years that Wee Meng Chee, popularly known as Namewee, has been investigated over his music videos.

Police said in a statement that Wee was detained Thursday after they received four public complaints that his video marking the Chinese year of the dog had “insulted Islam and could negatively impact racial unity and harmony.”

ALSO READ: Barber-turned-rapper Sayed Jamal Mubarez Crowned winner of ‘Afghan Star’ in Talent Show

In the video entitled “Like a Dog,” Wee sits on a chair in a public square in the government administrative capital of Putrajaya with dancers wearing dog masks around him. Several of them mimic the “doggy-style” sex move. A green domed building in the background led some people to speculate it was filmed in front of a mosque, leading to criticism, but Wee later said it was the prime minister’s office.

The song includes the sounds of dog barks from various countries. In an apparent reference to government corruption, Wee sings that dogs in Malaysia go “mari mari, wang wang,” which in the Malay language means “come come, money money.”

islam
Dogs are considered unclean by Muslims, who account for 60 percent of Malaysia’s 32 million people. Pixabay

 

Several ministers have called for Wee to be arrested. He has defended the video as a form of entertainment and said he has no intention of disrespecting any race or religion.

Earlier Thursday, Wee posted a picture on Facebook of himself at the federal police headquarters as he was wanted by police for questioning.

“I am not afraid because I believe Malaysia has justice,” he said.

ALSO READ: Tripura rapper likes songs on issues such as discrimination and racism

Previous controversies

In 2016, he was detained after enraged Malay Islamic activists lodged complaints that a video titled “Oh My God,” which was filmed in front of various places of worship and used the word “Allah,” which means God in the Malay language, was rude and disrespectful to Islam. He was not charged.

In one of his earliest videos, he mocked the national anthem and was criticized for racial slurs. He also produced a movie that was banned by the government in 2014 for portraying national agencies in a negative way.

Race and religion are sensitive issues in Malaysia, where the ethnic Malay majority has generally lived peacefully with large Chinese and Indian minorities since racial riots in 1969 left at least 200 people dead. (VOA)

Next Story

Weight Loss Movement in Malaysia Promotes Healthy Lifestyle

Weight Loss Movement Tries to Combat Malaysia’s Obesity Crisis

0
Healthy lifestyle
Sarah Baharudin, age 35, like many Malaysians has been leading an inactive lifestyle and eating unhealthy food for most of her life. VOA

By Dave Grunebaum

“1-2-3,” shouts Dr. Noradhiah Tumirin, a physician and fitness trainer. “You can do it,” she enthusiastically says as her client Sarah Baharudin is lying flat on her back and struggling to lift her legs from the ground to a 90-degree angle.

Baharudin, age 35, is breathing heavily throughout the workout. She’s 165 centimeters tall and weighs 110 kilograms.

“I eat traditional Malay food, yes and it’s high in fat and calorie,” Baharudin says while explaining how she became obese. “On top of that I was not active, not living an active lifestyle, did not exercise. So years after years of doing that it becomes obesity.”

Baharudin’s story is a common one across Malaysia. Approximately half of the country’s adults are overweight or obese and about thirty percent of the youth are.

Healthy lifestyle
Jom Kurus founder Kevin Zahri (seen jumping rope) says the goal is to get participants to lead healthy lifestyle long after the six-week program ends. VOA

Baharudin and her overweight husband, Nazrul Mohammad, are trying to change their lifestyles by exercising regularly and eating healthier food.

Tumirin, a retired Malaysian Army Major who’s 157 centimeters tall and a very fit 56 kilos, says the country’s obesity crisis is behind increasing rates of non-communicable diseases. “This obesity will lead to multiple illnesses such as hypertension, high cholesterol, heart illnesses and diabetes.” she says.

Kevin Zahri is one of Malaysia’s leading fitness influencers. He founded  a local weight loss movement called Jom Kurus which translates to lets get thin or lets lose weight.

Healthy lifestyle
Every year thousands of Malaysians sign up for one of Jom Kurus’ six-week fitness programs for a healthy lifestyle across the country. VOA

Every year, thousands of overweight and obese Malaysians join six-week-long Jom Kurus fitness camps across the country. They meet several times a week for exercises and lessons on nutrition, plus there are social media support groups for constant encouragement. At one recent session, participants did leg lifts, push ups and stretches.

“The program is designed to help somebody not feel alone and jump on the bandwagon with a group of people who are of similar physical stature and similar objectives, goals and desires,” Zahri said. He says the average participant loses four to five kilos during the six week program. But the real goal is to get them to lead healthy lifestyles long after.

“We are hoping the six-week program can become the kick start in the longevity of their journey,” Zahri said.

Also Read- Exposure To High Levels of Air Pollution May Lead To Changes in Children’s Brain Structure

But while Jom Kurus and other programs are helping Malaysians change their lifestyles, it’s clear these fitness routines are just scratching the surface of this nation’s obesity crisis.

“All said and done the amount of people we’ve targeted in comparison to the number in the population which are obese is still very very small,” Zahri said. (VOA)