Welcoming Speech for Asia Pacific Peace Research Association

Aslkm wrth brkth, Peace Be Upon You

I greet you with the best of greetings handed down thousand of years through generations. It is a greeting that knows no boundaries of race, religion and ethnic groups. Once humankind can accept that we are all under one race of humanity, PEACE can definitely enjoy a bright future.

Dear Participant of Peace Research,

The mosque known as Masjid Melayu was built by a rich merchant from the royal family of the Achenese Sultanite in 1808. Tunku Syed Hussain Al-Aidid endowed a piece of land lot 200 at 66, 396 square feet for the use of religious purposes partly for the mosque and other activities.

The Lebuh Acheh area became a melting pot of various ethnic background where business was blooming, at the height of it is the Hajj activities. You can imagine the diverse environment this hub hosted and one can imagine it as a replica of what pilgrims can expect when they arrive in the busy Jeddah port, and thus this very place was known as the Mini Jeddah.

Ladies and Gentleman,

Since 27th Nov 1791 when this place was open through contract made between Syed Hussain al.Aidid and Sir Francis Light, the pioener had a vision that this place would one day become the hub and melting pot of various cultures and background. Since then it has witnessed WW1, WW2, Colonial Supremacy and regional conflict. The area became a safe heaven for rebellious groups working against the colonialist. Syed Hussain himself and his band being an outcast from the Achehnese internal struggle has become a target of tussle between British protection and Dutch pursuant on him.

Warlords from Malay secret society of red flag and white flag sketches the underground grip on the society then. Lebuh Acheh was known to be the centre of the Red Flag in alliace with Chinese Ghee Hin and Tua Peh Kong. It took the will of a man from this mosque named Sheikh Omar Basheer the Imam to settle the menace of the underworld. As a respected Imam he offered an oath to the gang member to leave the secret society as it is against the teaching of Islam and in return will be free from their ceiminal charges. Many took the pledge or Baiah to leave the underworld and return back to the society as a normal citizen.

Indeed the mosque we are in today contributed to peace building process and provided practical solution as the word peace today become scrace in action and solution.

Ladies and Gentleman,

Today our generation will continue the 200 years or more journey that it had taken for peace and harmony. Just this year before the end of Ramadan we hosted together with Dato’ Anwar Fazal a walk of harmony ending up breaking fast together here. It was a practical move of peace between diferent faith celebrating diversity at its best. Im honored today Masjid Melayu continue to host peace loving society as our guest. Enjoy PEACE through DIVERSITY for a better HUMANITY.

Thankyou

Dato’ Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa
Chairman of Masjid Melayu Lebuh Acheh

24th August 2017.