TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - In terms of the public dispute entangling Islamic preacher Abdul Somad, member of Horas Bangso Batak’s legal team, Erwin Situmorang said the considerable steps by the Indonesia Ulama Council (MUI) to broker peace between the preacher and the Christian community will end in vain.
MUI previously said that it would conduct visits to Catholic and Protestant figures in an attempt to cool down the tension that had built up following a viral clip of Abdul Somad talking about the crucifix as answering the participant’s question during his sermon three years ago.
“If MUI suggests us to meet UAS (a general acronym referring to Ustad Abdul Somad), meanwhile the person himself will not confess of making a mistake, how could we all sit together?” said Erwin to Tempo on Wednesday, August 28.
During the meeting between Somad and MUI on August 21, the organization’s spokesman Masduki Baidlowi hoped the police reports against the cleric would be revoked and offered to solve the polemic in a family manner. However, during that meeting, Somad was reluctant to apologize for the discussion on statues and the Christian Cross.
As of today, two groups have reported the cleric for alleged blasphemy which consists of Horas Bangso Batak and the Indonesian Christian Student Movement (PP GMKI).
The Horas Bangso Batak community, according to Erwin, still awaits the public apology from Abdul Somad and maintains that the group does not hold a personal grudge against the cleric. This community asserts that Abdul Somad’s view on statues and how it was referred to the Christian Cross had indefinitely hurt the Christian community.
“But if he isn’t remorseful, then we’ll hand it to the police,” said Erwin.
M YUSUF MANURUNG