KUALA LUMPUR: PKR President Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has denounced the "Buy Muslim First", calling the move unhealthy in Malaysia’s multiracial landscape.
“If you want to promote halal products, it’s acceptable. But if you are trying to promote such products using contentious issues between races, it is not healthy," he said.
Anwar remarked that as Muslims it was important to project a good image as well as making products that were acceptable by all.
“But there are products that Muslims require that are made by Chinese which is also permissible for Muslims.
"So the racial connotation used is unhealthy in a multiracial and multicultural society,” he said after delivering the keynote address at the 6th International Conference on History and Culture, here, today.
The "Buy Muslim First" campaign stemmed from a "Buy Bumiputera First" campaign which started making their rounds on social media.
It was however wholly condemned by Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng.
It has now turned into a "Buy Muslim First" movement following criticism of it being racist.
Meanwhile, Anwar refused to be drawn into the squabble between PKR Secretary General Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail and party Vice President Zuraida Kamaruddin over letters she had written to Anwar as a move to patch the strained relations between the president and his Deputy Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali.
He dismissed the spat as a petty matter and urged Mohamed Azmin to just attend the political bureau meeting.
Pressed on the politics surrounding his succession as Prime Minister which has some quarters alleging it was causing a backlash on the economy and Pakatan Harapan’s (PH) rating, Anwar brushed the matter aside.
“I don’t worry, the transition is a settled affair which is created by some.”