Boxer and former NRL player Anthony Mundine has issued a scathing open letter to Australian PM Scott Morrison, insisting that Muslims deserve his support.
Writing for Newscorp in a piece published the Courier Mail, the 43-year-old called out Morrison and other politicians for not travelling to New Zealand to meet with survivors and families of those killed in last Friday’s deadly shootings in Christchurch. As a person of Muslim faith, Mundine explained that he felt it was his “obligation” to support those impacted by the killings. He had earlier this week taken to his Facebook page to share photographs of himself with some of the survivors.
“I’m honoured to be visiting these beautiful brothers and sisters who survived the horrific atrocities in Christchurch,” he wrote on Thursday. “May Allah give them the strength to get through this terrible experience and heal their pain. They are all amazing and very brave humans. Please keep them in your prayers.”
In a further Facebook message he wrote: “Alhumdallah (thank god) I could come to help & aid the survivors of the horrific shooting in Christchurch! May Allah bless the families & except the victims to Jannah (paradise) keep them in your prayers!”
In his Newscorp piece, Mundine also praised NZ Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and said he wished she was Australia’s PM. He’s not alone, with an online poll released on Friday revealing that many Australians would happily see Ardern in Australia’s top spot.
The survey, published on Twitter by The Project panelist Hamish Macdonald, posed the question: “Australia, who is your preferred PM?” Respondents were then given three options to choose from; Jacinda Ardern, Scott Morrison or Bill Shorten.
An incredible 81 per cent of respondents opted for Ardern, who was elected as New Zealand’s third female leader in 2017. Opposition leader Bill Shorten came in second place with 15 per cent of the vote, followed by Morrison with just four per cent.
As for Mundine, he said politicians needed to do the right things, not just say them.
“We have too many people in office who say the right things, but go missing when it’s time to walk the talk,” he wrote.
He also praised New Zealand for the way it treats Indigenous people, explaining the country teaches Maori culture and language in schools. In contrast, he explained that Aboriginal culture is not taught in any schools.
“New Zealand is so much further ahead than us in the treatment of Indigenous people. We need a treaty in Australia to recognise Aboriginal people and our rights,” he added.
The former I’m a Celebrity…Get Me Out of Here! contestant also explained that he supported One Nation’s controversial plan for DNA testing of Aboriginal people, explaining that he felt many had been taking advantage for too long.
It’s not the first time Mundine has spoken about issues close to his heart. He’s made headlines in the past for branding the Australian National Anthem “racist”.