Malaysian activists call gambling 'a cancer in society'

Malaysian activists protested on Friday a US concert and the government permit of a sports betting licence.

Malaysian activists call gambling 'a cancer in society'

Malaysian activists protested on Friday a US concert and the government permit of a sports betting licence.

About 300 Malay Muslims representing several groups led by the opposition Pan Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS) gathered in the compound of a mosque in the capital's Malay enclave after Friday prayers to denounce gambling and pop concerts.

Ascot Sports, a company linked to Malaysian tycoon Vincent Tan, has received a license to run betting on sports such as soccer, basketball, motor racing, tennis and golf, according to Tan’s conglomerate Berjaya Corp., which is buying 70 percent of Ascot for 525 million ringgit ($163 million).

Non-Muslim minorities, mainly ethnic Chinese and Indians, are allowed to purchase lotteries and bet on horse races, but betting on other sports has been illegal.

Pitbull is scheduled to perform at a dance music festival in the country on Saturday.

The concert and gambling licence are unrelated, but a PAS official said the protest was part of an ongoing awareness campaign against "immorality" in the country.

"We must act before gambling floods our country," PAS official Kamaruzaman Mohamad told the crowd. "Gambling is a cancer in our society."

Condemning the U.S. rapper," Kamaruzaman said Pitbull was not welcome.

"It's bad enough that he is named after a dog, but if you watch his videoclip on Youtube, his peformance and lyrics are against Malaysian cultural norms," said Kamaruzaman.

Demonstrators carried placards with the words "Malaysia is not a gambling nation", and chanted, "God is Greatest". Police moved in to disperse the crowd but made no arrests.

PAS is part of a group led by opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim which made record gains in the 2008 national elections.

Reuters

Last Mod: 14 Mayıs 2010, 16:31
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chris
chris - 11 yıl Before

Gambling is a cancer,I'd like to put all casino owners in a gas chamber