We Stand With Numan Afifi
Compiled by Queer Lapis.
Over the last two days, Malaysian Minister of Youth & Sports Syed Saddiq has been questioned over his hiring of Numan Afifi on his team. Numan is known as the president of Pelangi, which organised the Big Gay Iftar and has been active in advocating the human rights of LGBT people. Besides that, Numan is also active in youth empowerment, voter education, electoral campaigning, interfaith dialogues, and other forms of activism.After the news of him being a member of Syed Saddiq’s staff became viral, thanks to people from BN, Numan’s name was erased from the roster of Ministry of Youth & Sports.
Many Malaysians are urging Syed Saddiq to uphold principles of fairness, equality, and meritocracy, and retain Numan in his team. Here is a collection of notes in support of a great Malaysian youth named Numan Afifi.
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What inclusive nation is PH building?
If Numan Afifi loses his job due to his sexual orientation then it is a clear case of workplace discrimination. If he loses his job due to pressure from political opponents then it is a critical case of a lack of ovaries from Pakatan Harapan and Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman. We voted Pakatan Harapan because among the five main thrusts of its manifesto is the promise to “build an inclusive and moderate nation”. Letting go of a staff due to his sexual orientation is a betrayal of those of us who bought into this promise. Letting go of a staff due to pressure from cowardly unprincipled opponents exposes your own cowardice and lack of principles too. Letting go of a staff this way signals to companies and employers in Malaysia that it is okay to dismiss or not hire LGBT staff, which is already a reality for many of us. Letting go of Numan Afifi tells us that an inclusive nation according to Pakatan Harapan is exclusive only to people who are already part of your little club. What is the damn difference with the old Malaysia? Pakatan, don’t be as cowardly as BN. Don’t make us lose harapan in you.
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“Utamakan isu yg penting terkini seperti isu perkahwinan budak bawah umur”
Salam kepada Kerajaan Baru Malaysia yg saya seorang mak nyah di Malaysia undi dan sokong . Tujuan utama saya inginkan perubahan ini adalah sebagai rakyat Malaysia, saya amat risau akan melihat kejatuhan nama Malaysia dimata dunia.
Pelbagai masalah timbul seperti mata wang menurun, kos sara hidup meningkat, peluang pekerjaan yg amat rendah, racism yg dicetus oleh pihak sebelum ini mengakibatkan ketegangan antara masyarakat, kuasa dictatorship yg amat ketara sehingga rakyat takut nk bersuara, isu wang rakyat yg digunakan utk perkara yg tidak sepatutnya terutamanya 1mbd yg telah memberi imej yg amat negatif di seluruh dunia, isu hak asasi samarata yg selalu di ceroboh pelbagai pihak.
Saya rasa isu isu yg saya utarakan ini adalah juga diantara isu kebanyakan rakyat Malaysia berbilang agama, bangsa, warna kulit, gender dan juga seksualiti inginkan perubahan dan sebab inilah kami memilih Kerajaan Baru Malaysia ini. 💝
Perubahan yg saya inginkan bukan berdasarkan hanya pada gender identiti saya sebagai seorang mak nyah tetapi sebagai rakyat Malaysia yg mempunyai hak utk mengundi utk masa depan negara kita semua.
Jangan gunakan taktik setengah parti politik dimana mereka cuba mengaburi masalah utama dgn menggunakan isu komuniti minoriti seperti Transgender, L,B atau G utk mengubah pandangan mata masyarakat.
Kami golongan minoriti tidak langsung mengakibatkan ketegangan, keganasan, ancaman mahupun kepada kejatuhan negara.
Utamakan isu yg penting terkini seperti isu perkahwinan budak bawah umur, rasuah serta penggunaan wang rakyat utk perkara yg lebih memberi impak positif kpd seluruh rakyat Malaysia. ☺💝☺
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“A significant section of the youths in this country do not have the ability to be themselves.”
Tweets by Afiq Harraz
I’m absolutely disappointed and disgusted with you, SyedSaddiq. Your ministry website showed the list of your Special Officers which included an openly gay man (not that his sexual orientation has anything to do with his ability to do a good job).
When some homophobic (naturally) Malays made a fuss about Numan’s sexual orientation and his championing of everyone being treated equally regardless of sexual orientations which, again, has nothing to do with his ability to do his job well, you came out (no pun intended) –
Yes, it is the concern of the many homophobes in Malaysia when it comes to Numan’s appointment but as an international debater and a representative of youth, don’t you think you should stand your ground instead of being cowed into submission by –
– a section of society that often drenchingly fantasise about going back in time to the 7th century? Instead of submitting to the barbaric demands of these people, you should’ve given them pointers on why it is imperative to have everyone equally represented –
– in a ministry that is supposed to oversee the youths of the country as well as an explanation to these holier-than-thou section of society that one’s sexual orientation does not impede one’s ability to work and perform, as what a debater would naturally, and be expected to, do.
Do you know which section of society is most affected when it comes to discrimination and persecution against the LGBT community? Yes, the youths! A significant section of the youths in this country do not have the ability to be themselves.
They’re bullied. They’re taunted. They’re abused, both mentally and physically, and in some cases, sexually. They’re beaten to death. The saddest part is they have no one to go to when it comes to taking meaningful action that will effect change to their predicaments.
A minister who is supposed to have the interests of all youths in his undertakings have now unfortunately and appallingly sidelined them by denying them someone to look up to in a government that is supposed to be representative of all people.
Get your shit together, SyedSaddiq. You’re better than this. At least, that’s what I hope for. #LGBTPROUD #LGBTI #LGBTQ #Equality #YouthPower #Youth #NumanAfifi #NOH8
Dig your heels in. That’s what I, along with numerous other people, expect from you.
A test of Syed Saddiq’s Character
“I DON’T SUPPORT LGBT BUT AM AGAINST DISCRIMINATION”
If you ever said, “I don’t support LGBT but am against discrimination” —
Then you better defend the right of any LGBT person to work at KBSMalaysia or anywhere else.
But if you think “I don’t support LGBT but am against discrimination” is a reasonable middle-ground, recent events show it is NOT.
It perpetuates a culture where hiring an LGBT person (i.e. not discriminating that person) is scandalous and seen as “supporting LGBT”, which in turn leads people to discriminate against LGBT persons by not hiring them.
Every person must be able to enjoy human rights and non-discrimination, period.
And to Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, this is one of many moments where your character will be tested. This is a chance for you to send a message to our youth — that EVERYONE has a future in Malaysia. I hope you take it.
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This is the reality for many people
Statement by Thilaga, Justice For Sisters
“Defend an unpopular stance for once because it is right”
You know what I want Syed Saddiq to do? I want him to come out and say, yes, I picked out Numan as a special officer because he is a capable officer.
I want him to defend Numan openly and bravely.
I want him to say LGBT people live among us, work among us, play among us, pay taxes among us, and that is OK.
I just want him to defend an unpopular stance for once because it is right.
I want him to stop basking on popularity alone in public, but throw your own friends under the bus when shit hits the fan (boy do I know that feeling).
But all this is too much to ask, innit? When it really comes down to it, he’s not as “brave” and “pioneering” as he claims to be. He is the new guard of the old, the young face of the powerful Malay establishment. What glass ceiling? Fuck your non-existent glass ceiling!
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