The Malaysian Insider wrote an article titled, Three Selangor lawmakers propose amending state law on using religious words. Here is an excerpt:
Three Selangor assemblyman have called for a state law passed during the Barisan Nasional rule to be amended to ensure non-Muslim rights are protected as guaranteed by the Federal Constitution.
State assemblymen Yeo Bee Yin, Rajiv Rishyakaran and Lau Weng San, representing the state constituencies of Damansara Utama, Bukit Gasing and Kampung Tunku respectively, said they would propose the changes to be made on the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation Among Muslims) Enactment 1988, at the next state assembly sitting.
-The Malaysian Insider
What I would like to highlight from the article is a few quotes by the three assemblymen as written below.
It (the enactment) should not be used to restrict anyone from practising and professing their own religion in their preferred language,”
“As such this section should be amended to ensure that extreme groups will not act against persons of other faiths at their own convenience.
“The enactment must be consistent with the Federal Constitution which states under Article 11(4) that ‘State law and in respect of the Federal Territories of Kuala Lumpur and Labuan, federal law may control or restrict the propagation of any religious doctrine or belief among persons professing the religion of Islam’, but does not allow for curtailing the rights of non-Muslims in the manner which they practice their own faith,”
“We must not let the extremists to dictate the state and national agenda to the extent that the minorities are victimised unjustly,”
-The Malaysian Insider quoting the three assemblymen’s statement.
Also another interesting article, Selangor Islamic authorities wrong to seize Bibles, say lawyers, non-Muslim group. Here is an excerpt:
They said that Jais had acted beyond its authority and infringed the religious rights of non-Muslims, a guarantee provided under the Federal Constitution, and could lead to legal suits for committing several civil wrongs like trespass and unlawful detention.
Now, let us clear the air. The purpose of JAIS is to manage things regarding Islam and Muslim affairs in Selangor. Among other things, JAIS must be fully aware of any threats against Islam. And yes, JAIS has all the the rights to stop any threats that can threaten Islam, which is the religion of the Federation of Malaysia.
An Enactment which is cited as the ‘Non-Islamic Religious (Control of Propagation Amongst Muslims) Enactment, 1988’ was created as a guideline for the authorised officers to control or restrict the propagation of any religious doctrine or belief if the act of such religious doctrine or belief is considered as an offence towards Islam according to the Enactment. This Enactment is aligned with Article 11(4) of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia which states, “State law and in respect of the Federal territories of Kuala Lumpur, Labuan and Putrajaya, federal law may control or restrict the propagation of any religious doctrine or belief among persons professing the religion of Islam.”
In the Enactment, ‘Non-Islamic Religious (Control of Propagation Amongst Muslims) Enactment, 1988’, section 9, in short says that the act of a person who uses any of the words (and a few more) listed in the picture below, or any of its derivatives or variations, to express or describe any fact, belief, idea, concept, act, activity, matter, or thing of or pertaining to any non-Islamic religion is considered an offence.
In section 12 of the same Enactment, it states that “An authorised officer may investigate the commission of any offence under this Enactment and may arrest without warrant any person suspected of having committed any such offence.”
The Federal Constitution have stated clearly that Article 11 of the Federal Constitution is subjected to Clause 4 of the Article; so it must not to be read separately.
Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia, clearly stated that, “Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.” Now, “in peace and harmony” does not means that non-Muslims may practice their religious doctrine or belief in what ever ways that they feel “peaceful”. But “in peace and harmony” means that whatever they do, they must do it in peace and harmony in regards to Islam. They must remember that Islam has the highest place in this country. Therefore, believers of other religions must make peace with Islam and not the other way around. Islam is not in the same level as other religions in Malaysia. If people of any other religions displays a threat against Islam, the authorised officers have the rights to restrict the acts of those people.
JAIS never stop the Christians from practicing their faith. JAIS did not restrict anyone from practising and professing their own religion as well as they respect the Article 3(1) and Article 11(4) and the rules of this country. They can have all the bibles in this whole world, if that is what they want; but they must respect the law of the country that says that the word ‘god’ in the bible CANNOT be translated to Allah. What JAIS did was, they took away some 300 copies of the Bahasa Malaysia and Iban versions of the Bible where the word god is translated to ‘Allah’.
For the millionth time, ‘Allah’ is NOT a Malay word. In Malaysia, the word ‘Allah’ is a proper noun. Therefore, why must the Malaysian Christians use the word ‘Allah’ as the translation of the word god? Is it because they want to imitate the Muslims? The Malay word for god is “tuhan” and not Allah. And why must there be bibles in the Malay language in the Peninsula of Malaysia where the Christians here rarely read anything in the Malay language unless they have no choice?
Congratulations JAIS for their excellent job. As for the DAP’s trio assemblyman and the non-Muslim NGOs and lawyers, please keep your feet on the ground. The people in Selangor must obey the Sultan of Selangor’s orders for the Christians to stop using the word ‘Allah’.