The Islamic religious teacher who was fined $4,000 for making offensive remarks about Christians and Jews will be returning home today.
On Wednesday morning, Imam Nalla Mohamed Abdul Jameel met Home Affairs and Law Minister K. Shanmugam, who told him he appreciated the sincerity of the imam’s apology.
According to ST, the breakfast meeting at Ba’alwie Mosque was organised by its imam, Habib Hassan Al-Attas, who invited the minister to meet Imam Nalla.
“I accepted Imam Hassan’s invitation to meet the imam and have breakfast with him,” Mr Shanmugam said in a statement in response to media queries.
“I thought it would be good to meet and tell the Imam that I appreciated the sincerity with which he had shown his remorse,” Min Shanmugam
He should have also added that there were cameras to take pictures and videos of the whole thing.
Imam Nalla, 46, pleaded guilty to the charge and admitted to committing the offence on Jan 6 at the Jamae Chulia Mosque in South Bridge Road, where he was chief imam.
After the Friday sermon that day, he recited a prayer on his own in Arabic which said “Grant us help against the Jews and the Christians”.
The imam has already apologised twice.
The first apology was at MND Harmony in Diversity Gallery to the leaders from various faiths, including Bishop Terry Kee
The second apology was when he visited the Maghain Aboth Synagogue at Waterloo Street on Sunday to apologise personally to Rabbi Mordechai Abergel and the Jewish community.
We thought that his apology was sincere and heartfelt and that he truly felt remorseful for his actions.
Why was there a need to showcase him further feeling remorseful when meeting up with Shanmugam.
It was too much drama for us, like a scene from a well-crafted climax scene from a Bollywood movie, cameras zooming in on how the Imam hugged, and cried a little, as Min Shanmugam held his hand and consoled him.
Was that necessary? It was uneasy to watch. The fella already said sorry, kena fined and will be deported.
Have sympathy for him la. Give him his dignity of going away peacefully.