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Pastor Raymond Koh: Is The State Involved? 100 Days Plus And Counting

May 26, 2017 09:13 PM EDT
What has happened to the missing pastor in Malaysia? The Inspector General of the Police (IGP) has continued to remain mum on the situation, and it does not look as though any new developments have happened. Is there something more sinister at work here?
Speculations that Pastor Raymond Koh was abducted by religious vigilante groups are spreading more than two months after his disappearance. Facebook/International Christian Concern

The abduction of Malaysian pastor Raymond Koh Keng Joo on February 13 this year in broad daylight continues to remain a mystery in the eyes of the Malaysian public and the rest of the world. CCTV footage has shown how swiftly the abduction took place -- all in under two minutes and in broad daylight, no less, with someone even recording the entire process on video with another person nonchalantly redirecting traffic away. The kind of vehicles used in the abduction are SUV which are black in color and fully tinted beyond standard road regulations in Malaysia, which do seem to drop hints of state machinery being used.

Movie making as an excuse?
One does have to ask the question, “Why is someone recording the entire abduction process?” Perhaps it is to be used as a training video, or as evidence later on in the event of a ransom demand. However, now that we have entered more than 100 days (and counting) of Pastor Koh’s abduction with no legitimate ransom demand being put forward, that scenario is not likely. One possible theory as to why the abduction was recorded on video is to be a red herring to all passers-by, as they might think that this is nothing but a movie scene being shot. However, the lack of professional video recording equipment used as revealed in the CCTV footage should have given the game away for those who know better.

Public confidence in the police institution has eroded
The Malaysian police and its Special Branch is well known for its efficiency and intelligence capability, with many citizens knowing just how well trained that they are. Tracey Chin has shared a glimpse into her father’s life and work, a Special Branch officer who helped safeguard the peace of the nation during the tumultuous Communist era. Otherwise, how else can the Malaysian authorities hunt down and detain the two operatives who murdered Kim Jong Nam earlier this year, who happens to be the half brother of the current North Korean dictator? Hence, for more than a hundred days to have passed without any new developments (or at least, revealed information on the case’s progress) from the police is simply an unacceptable position for many right thinking Malaysians.

100 days without any solution in sight
Pastor Koh’s wife, Susanna, and three children continue to hold out hope that they will see their husband and father again one day, but the flame of this hope is flickering out more and more as each day passes without any news. They are certainly bracing themselves for the worst, but they have found strength in God and through an outpouring of love and encouragement from Malaysians in all states. Despite that, Susanna cannot but help express her disappointment with the IGP. While the IGP continues to maintain his stand that they are working on the case and are unable to divulge any further information so that the delicate situation will not be jeopardized, other than to offer news that another suspect has been picked up, the general public’s faith in the police institution to perform its job independently without fear or favor continues to erode.

The biggest fear is having the police work hand in hand with other state instruments (something that has happened in Malaysia before), including more fundamental or extremist-minded religious organizations that are Islamic in nature. Pastor Koh was unfairly accused of proselytizing to Muslims in the past and even received death threats, and the accusations have gone unfounded but the incensed Muslims continue to look beyond logic and let their warped emotions rule their actions. Who in the right mind would provide a cash payout of $10,000 for a single convert?

The silent majority in Malaysia remains silent
“The silent majority” is a term that is loosely thrown around in Malaysia, where anyone who speaks up against injustice and perceived wrongs in the country which had been perpetrated by Muslims tend to be labeled as “liberals”, “munafiq (wayward Muslims)”, or even traitors to their own race and religion. There is a very low level of tolerance for right thinking when it comes to Islam in Malaysia. Muslims in Malaysia live under the subjugation of state law, where anyone who does not perform his or her Friday prayers for three times in a row can be hauled up to the Shariah court, charged and penalized. Raids are often enforced in low budget hotels to pick up unmarried couples who share a room, while the rich and powerful who do the same in 5-star hotels remain untouched.

It is not impossible that Pastor Koh could have been subjugated to an enforced disappearance, or a state-sanctioned kidnapping. Whether he is dead or remains holed up in one of the many secret rehabilitation centers in the country remains to be seen. What is needed is prayers, and for a Good Samaritan within the corrupted system to take a stand for what is right.

Tags : Raymond Koh, abduction, Persecution, Malaysia