Election special No 10 – Muslims paying Aborigines to convert to Islam, Rise Up candidate claims

brisbanetimes2

August 30, 2013 – 12:01AM

Amy Remeikis
State political reporter

A federal election candidate in western Queensland has accused Muslims of paying Aborigines to convert to Islam.

Rise Up Australia candidate Pam Hecht says Muslims are paying Aborigines to convert to Islam.
Photo: riseupaustraliaparty.com

Speaking to ABC Western Queensland, Rise Up Australia candidate Pam Hecht said the biggest issue facing people in the electorate of Kennedy, which Bob Katter holds by 18.3 per cent, was the conversion of Indigenous people to Islam.

“I don’t know whether people are aware, but many of the Aboriginal people in northern Australia are being targeted by Muslims and in some cases are being paid to convert to Islam,” she said, describing herself and the electorate as “farmers … just ordinary everyday people”, who “want to be free to go about our business”.

“Our concern with that is, the Muslim belief, that converting the first peoples of the land to Islam means that the land belongs to Allah, and Islam should be the only religion.

“There is an Aboriginal lady who works with the people up in northern Australia and she has spoken directly with the leader of our party, Daniel Nalliah [and told him about the practice].”

Of the 340,393 Australians who identified as Muslims in the 2006 Census, just 1011 were Indigenous.

Comparatively, 290,630 Indigenous people identified as Christian.

Academics believe Aborigines came into contact with those who practised the Islamic faith even before they came into contact with Christianity, first through trade links with Indonesia and later through cameleers.

Mr Nalliah, the leader of Rise Up Australia, states in his Catch the Fire Ministries biography, that he first knew “the Lord had called him” after an Australian missionary visited his Sri Lankan town in 1976.

He made national headlines in 2002 when anti-Muslim comments he made became the subject of the first case heard under Victoria’s newly-created Racial and Religious Tolerance Act. Mediation ended the case five years later.

Ms Hecht, who says she is a “fifth generation Australian on her mother’s side” in her biography, said the growth of Islam was “an important issue for the whole of Australia and definitely Kennedy”. She denied the party wanted to restrict religionist choice and said the core issue was a matter of law.

“What we don’t support is their hijacking of our laws and our system,” she said.

“It really is many races, but one law and that’s Australian law.”

Earlier this month, the One Nation Party dropped their candidate for the seat of Rankin, Stephanie Banister, after a gaffe-filled interview with the 27-year-old aired on Channel Seven, showed Ms Banister mistaking Islam for a country.

Ms Banister said she had been misrepresented.

Fairfax Media attempted to contact both Ms Hecht and Mr Nalliah for comment.

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New party seeks to curb Muslim immigration


11 Feb 2013, 6:06 pm

Source: Shalailah Medhora, SBS

A Sri Lankan migrant has launched a political party that runs on an anti-multiculturalism platform. Rise Up Australia already boasts about 1,500 members and plans to run 65 candidates in the upcoming federal election.

A Sri Lankan migrant has launched a political party that runs on an anti-multiculturalism platform.

Rise Up Australia already boasts about 1,500 members and plans to run 65 candidates in the upcoming federal election.

“Rise Up Australia Party, which is committed to keeping Australia for Australians, is utterly and completely opposed to multiculturalism, says Rise Up Australia’s founder Daniel Nalliah.

The Sri Lankan-born pastor draws on his own migrant past in defence of assimilation.

That message has the backing of international figures.

“If you come here, then follow Pastor Danny’s example and enjoy it and celebrate it and do not seek to destroy it,” said Christopher Monckton from the UK Independence Party.

The leader of the new party has come under fire in the past for anti-Islamic comments, but he wasn’t backing away from making controversial statements again today.

“True Muslims are radicals, unfortunately. If they practice the Koran, they’re radicals,” he said.

If elected, Rise Up wants to restrict the number of Muslims calling Australia ‘home’.

The party has 1,500 supporters across the country, and is putting forward 52 candidates in the Lower House and a dozen in the Senate in the upcoming federal election.

Many of the supporters are concerned about what they claim is the “Islamification of Australia”.

“If we’re not careful, we’re going to lose this country,” said a supporter. “I don’t want to see Sharia Law in Australia,” said another.

But Iqbal Patel from Muslims Australia says that’s far from happening.

“Nobody wants to impose Sharia law in Australia, I mean, far from it. That’s the last thing that anybody wants to do”.

The Vice-President of the Muslim association insists it’s a free country, and supporters of Rise Up can vote as they chose.

“If they want to try and get any mileage on the backs of Muslims, and blame Muslims for all the ills of Australia, then I think that itself is very short-sighted of them,” he said.

But he says it’s sad that someone would exploit Islam for political gain.

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