Almakhazin SG: What Is PAP’s Tudung Policy Really All About?

The hijab ban is not because interracial harmony or relationships.

The ban…which Masagos Zulkifli supported..

Is about a group of secular fundamentalists trying to control Islam.

Two nights ago, PAP Minister, Masagos Zulkifli justified his party’s ban of the hijab.

He claimed that the ban is part of the PAP’s way of ensuring harmony by making every community sacrifice what is important to them.

He is not alone in the PAP in making such comments.

Former Prime Minister, Goh Chok Tong said the hijab affects integration.

Yaacob Ibrahim claimed it is problematic.

But the claim that the hijab affects harmony or integration does not stand scrutiny.

According to Assoc Prof Lily Zubaidah Rahim

“To date, the government has not provided any empirical evidence to support the presumption that allowing Muslim headscarves in primary and secondary schools impedes national unity.

Indeed, some school principals contend that students who had donned the tudung in the past did not disrupt social integration in class.”

If harmony and integration are not the reasons for the hijab ban..

then what is?

Lily Zubaidah argued the “no-tudung policy for Muslim schoolsgirls bears many similarities to Turkey’s headscarf restriction policy…

Both states exhibit secular fundamentalist and authoritarian tendencies…”

As Lily Zubaidah noted “An Naim has observed that this form of authoritarian state secularism is ‘often designed to enable the state to control religion…”

The PAP’s ban is not about a creating a multiracial, multireligious Singapura.

It is about a group of secular fundamentalists trying to subjugate Islam.

Rahim, Lily Zubaidah. Governing Islam and regulating Muslims in Singapore’s secular authoritarian state. Murdoch university. Asia research centre, 2009.


Source: Almakhazin SG

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