Saturday, January 04, 2014

Allah row in Pakatan's Selangor deepens

More updates, Jan 5: Shamsul Akmar, in his weekly column in the NST, observes Khalid Ibrahim's wishy-washy stand and Hadi Awang's insipid view of the Allah issue and says people will now finally have a better insight into what Pakatan actually stands for.
"... the bid by the DAP trio to amend the enactment would be quite explosive and could spark a major upset to the political equation. If in the past, the fear among DAP supporters and other non-Muslims is the emergence of Pas as a political power that would upset the equilibrium by pushing for hardline theocratic policies and laws, what is happening is the opposite." Read more H E R E

Updated, Jan 4: No (good) reason to amend Enactment, says Minister in Prime Minister's Department Jamil Khir Baharom. It will also anger the Muslims in this country. Sinar Harian has the story h e r e.
Updated, Jan 4: Umno guys in Selangor have promised to keep their cool. All parties should, especially the DAP fellas. Last thing we need is a brawl, boys and girls. Still, I think the police in throughout the State should be on high alert, just in case some nut case decides to burn down a church or deface a surau like the last time. NST story h e r e. 

Original posting:

Illegal bibles. If the Selangor DAP trio, aided by the Selangor State Assembly Speaker, want to amend the Selangor Non-Islamic Religious Enactment 1988, that's their business as lawmakers in that state. But there are proper procedures to follow. In the meantime, this 35-year old law that bars non-Muslims in Selangor from using the word "Allah" - and which many believe has enabled Muslims and Christians in the state to co-exist peacefully for decades - must continue to be adhered to. As lawmakers, the DAP trio and Hannah Yeoh are sworn to uphold it.
That means, in the spirit of the Selangor Non-Islamic Religion Enactment 1988  (not to mention the December 2013 decree by their Sultan, too), the Trio and the Speaker must admit that: 
1. Those bibles seized by Jabatan Agama Islam Selangror (JAIS) are, indeed, illegal, because they contain the word "Allah"; that is, if they did contain the barred word "Allah"; and  
2. The Editor of the Christian Herald (the publication that dragged the Federal Government to court also over the word Allah in its publication) had committed the original act of provocation in this latest row on Allah; that is, if he did make the statement to the effect that Churches in Selangor would continue to use the word "Allah".   
If they succeed to amend the Enactment, good for them. Until then, they will have to live with the fact that not everyone in Selangor can use the word "Allah". That's the state law. Even the Sultan's decree was based on the Enactment. 
Helen Ang has pics and story h e r e. 


  1. Anonymous3:39 pm

    Rocky dah bersuara, habis puak christian di Malaysia !
    Woi Rocky, kalau bible tu illegal pasal kastam di port kelang benarkan puak christian import dan bawa masuk ?

  2. Anonymous3:52 pm

    Tan Sri,

    Trust me, you have absolutely no clue about the legal ground you're standing on here. Neither do most of the umno parrot-stitutes who cannot distinguish between the Federal Constitution, the 1988 Enactment, the Court of Appeal's "Herald" decision, the government's 10-Point Solution, and the Sultan's decree.

    Hey, but what the heck.

    Understanding this stuff is strenuous, you'll still get paid anyway, and it's Saturday, so a long drinking session in Bangsar awaits.

    So, fuck it. No need to spend more than 15 minutes (by the looks of it.)

    I'll drink to that, bro : )


    1. Anonymous5:52 pm

      anon 3:52,

      fuck you!!

    2. Anonymous11:33 pm

      You too!! Okay?

    3. Anonymous8:04 am

      Yeah we'r all fuck up ... Arsehole

    4. Anonymous10:05 am

      F*ck me please!!

  3. Anonymous4:02 pm

    Nak org hormat kat kita, kenalah hormat org lain. Ni bukan je tak hormat kat org lain, Sultan dan Mahkamah pun tak dihormatnya. Klu zaman Khalifah dulu aku rase dah declare jihad dah aku rase.

  4. Jonny Lim4:04 pm

    All the three Mother F...ker from DAP must understand in Selangor Sultan is the head of Islamic Affair,Not the exco or The MB.

    Today LKSiang also questioning why the Police officer was accompanying the JAIS officers during the Raid.

    Mr Lim,if the Jais officer tell the policeman that The Sultan ask us to raid the Christian premises,Can he said No.

    The Malays are law abaiding people and they will never derhaka to their Sultan.

  5. Anonymous4:25 pm

    what would Ularmak nik aziz , spinner hadi awang and Unit ANAL PAS do?
    behave like dogs they are to master DAP...

    now, 10 points given by najib to opposition, who is the stupid one?
    good job UMNO.

  6. Anonymous4:42 pm

    Will not forgive any muslims in Pakatan who repels the Enakmen.

    Stop playing with fire. As much as the bulshit Michealangelo's depiction of Jesus (did he really look like that??) stop conning us that Allah is the equivalent translation of the dubious God that you believe in!!

    1. Anonymous1:41 am

      Moronic statement... Your god is holier?

    2. Anonymous8:54 am

      You sure have your thick head buried deep in the sand, you are No God to forgive!

    3. Anonymous8:06 am

      People of the book hv the same god

  7. Anonymous4:57 pm

    Sultan is not above constitution as well.

  8. Anonymous5:04 pm

    Mari kita sorak beramai-ramai kerana PKR,PAS dan DAP bergaduh sesama sendiri di Selangor hanya disebabkan oleh tindakan JAIS. Syabas JAIS..anda telah menjalankan tanggongjawab anda dan tanggongjawab anda sebagai umat Islam.

  9. Anonymous6:59 pm

    Anon 4.04'

    Tell that to the damm bloody fucking gerakan.... Do u dare?

  10. Anonymous8:31 pm

    "All parties should, especially the DAP fellas."

    LOL, you aren't even trying any more, are you?

  11. drMpower8:44 pm

    Wait. They got 2/3 in selangor, right? so they can change anything they want in selangor. Hurmm. So now people see this very closely, okay.

    How power corrupt people. Maybe its time to pay, since pre election there were promises and perhaps money exhanged

    The biggest losers are PAS. Now they are trapped with getting hold on selangor, or the very basic foundation PAS was built.

  12. I'm in agreement with you on this issue. It is not about whether UMNO is right or Pakatan is right. The gist of the issue is that, as we claimed we are living in a civilised society, everyone must play in accordance to the stated law. If they said the law is unconstitutional, then challenge the said law in court. Until the court award their decision, follow the present one. Simple as that..

  13. tebing tinggi9:47 pm

    It's look like no end to this issue because the evangelist christian are being recalcitrant, and rebuking the law of the land .
    The way on how it's goes ,may be the Malay / Muslim rakyat had the final say,if the authority failed to authorize.

    1. Anonymous9:00 am

      Before you go stupid ask yourself WHO started this stupid BAN on those words, is he playing God ??

  14. Anonymous11:09 pm

    PAS has been all these while claims to uphold Islam. Now is their time to prove their worthiness as a champion of Islam. If the assembly move to repel the 1988 non-Muslim enactment, will they support or reject? After all, they have a 2/3 majority as a government.

  15. Anonymous11:13 pm

    – Hafiz Ahmad
    The Malays are in a state of delusion. They cannot differentiate between their real problems and the delusional ones. I could not understand why they are paranoid with liberalism, pluralism, Shiism and Christianity, as these have no effect in their daily lives.

    Some Malays don’t even understand what liberalism really means. If anyone can explain what is the real threat of liberalism in our lives, I will be very grateful. Please enlighten me, I’m so confused.

    While people are struggling to put food in their mouths, there are those busy pointing their fingers at the 9% Christian population, claim that Christians are trying to establish a Christian state in Malaysia.

    With the exception of Vatican, there is no Christian state in this world. Even Italy with a strong Catholic population does not claim to be Christian country.

    Are Malays out of their mind? Muslims comprise 61.3% of the country’s population and Christians only 9.2 %. Where is the threat? It is worse when some religious bigots called Pembina fire up this delusional issue by organizing forums to make Muslims believe there is a threat from Christians.

    I don’t understand how such hatred can considered a religion event. I am a Muslim, probably not a pious one, but my religion never taught me to throw baseless accusations filled with hatred and prejudice at people of other faiths.

    Some Malays are just sucking up all this nonsense by these bigots. They should take a minute to use their brains given by Allah Almighty to think the logic of this allegation. These issues have corrupted Malays minds and robbed their common sense and ability to think.

    The latest 2012 monthly household income data from the Department of Statistics shows that the Bumiputera are the poorest in this country, with average monthly income of RM4,457, followed by Indians RM5,233 and Chinese RM6,366.

    This is the real problem of the Malays. The current trend of price hikes will further hurt the Malays, not to mention the Goods & Services Tax (GST) soon to be implemented. The purchasing power of Malays will reduce drastically.

    Ironically, the ruling party which claims to be champion of the Malays implements economic policies that hurt Malays the most. Again, this is the real problem of the Malays, not liberalism or pluralism.

    Malays should realise that rampant corruption in our country is the real threat to them.

    Corruption will threaten genuine and honest Malay entrepreneurs, not pluralism. Rising cost of living will threaten their stomachs, not liberalism.

    Malays must also realise that all delusional problems ‘threatening’ them are deliberately staged to cover up corruption, leakages and mismanagement bleeding our country. Malays must wake up from this delusion and face the reality.

    1. The Malay psychee is the answer to the Malay paronoia and delusion. The Malays care much of their faith over their material achivement. The corrupted government reflects the kind of society in a country. Most of the things need two to tango. Bribery comes into being when both parties, the giver & receiver, agreed to their terms.

    2. Anonymous8:11 am

      Till the end of the world the evengelist will continue to preserve to impose their believe and until muslim follow their ways

      Quote from the holy quran, now who i trust our Allah, you the evengelist or mujahid gereja

      Why cant u leave us muslim live in peace and stop provoking the people in malaysia

    3. Anonymous9:06 am

      Bravo!! I always knew most Malays are intellegent and smart, your comments have reassured my believe, good on you.

  16. Anonymous11:21 pm

    JAIS’ raid on the Bible Society of Malaysia has hit the world news!

    It is not only in Peninsular Malaysia, the news of the raid on the second day of the new year, has hit the Christian community worldwide.

    The Holy Bible, being at the very heart of the Christian community, was being confiscated in a country which is supposed to practise religious freedom and moderation.

    The dinosaur of Malaysian politics, Dr Mahathir Mohamad was among the first to make statements that the Christians in the peninsula should not irritate Muslims by using the name Allah, but unless Prime Minister, Najib Tun Razak stood up against Islamic extremists in this country, he, too, would go down the history as a ‘weakling’ in Malaysian politics.

    Mahathir has failed to see that in the eyes of the non-Muslims, these religious extremists are the ones who constantly trample on their holy book, shrine and temple. Failure of the BN Government to put a stop to religious extremism will continue to cost the BN its votes in the coming General Election.

    Whatever austerity drive Najib was trying to promote in Putrajaya will not add to his popularity, nor that of the BN Government which he leads, when such an issue is not being nipped at the bud. Neither is his flamboyant “First Lady of Malaysia” capable of doing anything to heal relations between the races and religious groups in the country despite the old adage which suggests, “Charity begins at home.”

    Arrogant and blatant

    Infamous for its previous raid on the Damansara Utama Methodist Church (DUMC), the JAIS has failed to learn its lesson.

    Behaving more like thuds, they entered into the premises of the Bible Society of Malaysia and rudely shouted at the staff there. It is now up to the staff of the Bible Society to lodge a police report against the JAIS team for their lack of civility and for trespassing.

  17. Anonymous11:22 pm

    First, they were without a search warrant. Their entry into the premises is considered illegal, and the Christian community can take up a civil suit against JAIS. Although this would be a sad development, such action may have its merits especially when such raids are unbecoming of a nation that believes in freedom of religion.

    The action by JAIS has not only marred the country’s image but that of the religion that they represent. Is this the religion, as taught by the prophet or it is a brand of Islam that is synonymous to the Malay supremacy created by the recalcitrant Mahathir?

    After all, he was the one who first banned the Alkitab when he first came to power. It was also during his tenure as prime minister that a number of state enactments were passed that appeased certain quarters. With all the talks on religion, Malaysia has not become any less corrupt, compared to countries like Singapore and Switzerland. On the contrary, corruption that used to be ‘covered up’ is now raised in broad daylight. A good example is the infamous Scorpene scandal which led to the murder of Mongolian model, Altantuya Sharriibuu and the PKFZ scandal which ended up with former transport minister being acquitted.

    Time to Speak Up

    The Christian community in the country has themselves to be blamed for not speaking up when their rights are being trampled upon.

    As Edmund Burke put it, "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." Without a double, the Christian community has to stand up and be counted.

    The Church has always stood the tests of time, and triumph over the most difficult situations. Choosing between obeying God and some man-made laws, the choice is all too obvious.

    If Christians would rather defy laws that went in contrary to their religious freedom and be prepared to be martyred than to give in, like the editor of Catholic weekly The Herald, Father Lawrence Andrew, they should state their convictions without fear.

    It is also time for the Muslim community to unite, and put a stop to the religious extremists in their midst. In the run up to the general election last year, a PAS ustaz had said that people like Zulkifli Noordin (another extremist) should not even be given the chance to exist in Malaysia; where are the voices of the moderates like him?

    Other Christian ministers from both Sabah and Sarawak should also speak up now, or forever remain silent. They should take the cue from Sarawak's Land Development Minister Tan Sri Dr James Masing, who was prepared to lambast at what he calls “gutless federal leaders” who are merely tip-toeing around the Allah issue instead of taking the bull by the horn.

    Sabah and Sarawak, being BN’s fixed deposit, are now experiencing the heat. Despite Najib’s 10-point plan, the JAIS’ raiders also took away the Iban Bibles. East Malaysians can no longer remain contented with their way of life, because when the Alkitab being the Holy Book of the Malay-speaking Christian community, is being treated with such contempt, they should also speak up.

    While the Christians do not go around creating chaos, their rights should not be trampled upon. UMNO Baru has to realise, at the end of the day, without the support of the Christian, Hindu and Sikh community, and the Malays themselves are now turning to Pakatan, they are as good as gone.

    A Blessing in Disguise

    Some analysts say that the JAIS’ raid on the Bible Society in Malaysia is therefore a blessing in disguise. It is a time to awaken the sleeping giant.

    Pakatan has been working hard on ploughing the ground in East Malaysia, but without much help from the local community, they had failed in two attempts to win seats in Sabah and Sarawak.

    Now, with the churches being shaken up from their slumber, it is likely that the 14th General Election will see a bigger shift in the people’s support towards BN. - Malaysia Chronicle

  18. Anonymous11:26 pm

    Open letter to HRH Sultan of Selangor

    Permit me to first wish you a Happy New Year and may you and your family always be blessed and protected by Allah and that your path always be lit with much joy, happiness and love.

    I am writing to humbly request for your guidance and wisdom in recent developments affecting us not only in Selangor but throughout the country. I feel that without your insight to help us, we will only slip into much discord and disharmony.

    Like many Malaysians, I reacted to the recent raid by the Religious Department of Selangor (Jais) on the offices of the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) with much regret, dismay, foreboding and fear.

    It is regrettable that Jais felt the need to conduct the raid in the first place. The fact that it had not even bothered to obtain or produce a warrant from a court of law demonstrates a mind-set, to my mind, which is not in keeping with the central tenets of fairness, compassion and justice in Islam. It reflects a disregard by those officers in question for the rule of law and respect for the Articles of the Federal Constitution. Besides issues relating to the freedom of religion, the JAIS officers arguably have also committed offences related to trespassing as well as wrongful arrest and detention.

    I am also dismayed at the high handed way in which this raid has been conducted, where representatives of the Religious Department used verbal and physical threats of violence to break in and force their way into the premises of the BSM, as well as the confiscation of Bibles and the arrest of BSM officers.

    There was already much foreboding when the new JAIS director, Ahmad Zaharin Mohd Saad, started off his tenure by declaring that the religious department would begin compelling churches in Selangor to comply with the Selangor Non-Islamic Religion (Control of Propagation Among Muslims) Enactment 1988, particularly on the usage of the word “Allah”. Yet, we are taught that there is no compulsion in religion. The Quran clearly states it under Surat Al-Baqarah (verse 256).

  19. Anonymous11:28 pm

    Your Royal Highness,

    We are forced to confront the fear and anxiety of not only our non-Muslims friends but also those who are Muslims, here in Malaysia and around the world, who rightly ask why this is happening? The original text of the Sikh Holy Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji uses “Allah” numerous times to refer to the omnipotent, omnipresent, compassionate and merciful one God. Those of the Sikh faith have also clearly stated that they will continue to use the word in their religious practices. Will Jais enter Sikh temples to confiscate their Holy Books next? What can we say to reassure our non-Muslim brothers and sisters?

    The actions of JAIS also come across as those of the ignorant, uneducated, unenlightened and bigoted. They are also those who seem to live in fear and jump at shadows, both perceived and self-created. What’s worse is that there are those who are determined to put a wedge between Muslims and our Christian brothers and sisters. How else do we explain this dogged determination to threaten and persecute with baseless and wild accusations of proselytization through means which have included holy water in drinking water, digital bibles and humanitarian assistance?

    With so many pressing issues affecting the welfare and well-being of Muslims in Selangor such as poverty, is this what JAIS considers to be the most urgent? We lose more Muslims through our neglect of our ummah on sidewalks, in back alleys, abandoned buildings and in hospitals than through proselytization. Jais’ lack of interest and unwillingness to learn about other religions has led us to this point. We have gone out of our way to marginalise ourselves and others, especially non-Muslims.

    Your Royal Highness,

    Of late, the word “treason” has been used time and again to threaten and silence the voices of reason, rationality, understanding and compassion. But early on, we are taught of the courageous example shown by Bilal ibn Rabah al-Habashi (or Bilal bin Rabah), one of the Prophet’s trusted and loyal companions, who stood up to torture and tyranny because he believed in what he believed to be right (berani kerana benar).

    If there is anything for us to fear, it is this call by a number of Malay Muslim NGOs and political groups to demonstrate and march on churches, as those of the Christian faith go about their prayer services this Sunday.

    A friend had this to say to me last night when she heard that her church has been targeted for the protest march: “My faith is in my God and God alone & I will not be intimidated.”

    It is also heart-warming to know that there are many Malaysian Muslims who have stated that they will join hands to protect these churches that morning.

    I believe that what JAIS has done is wrong and misrepresents our Islamic faith and is a threat to our way of life which celebrates the pluralism of religions and cultures.

    Your Royal Highness,

    We depend on your wisdom and guidance and, most importantly, your protection of all subjects regardless of race, religion or creed. We ask that you inspire us to reach for the tools of dialogue and discourse. We ask for voices of compassion, understanding, forgiveness and acceptance rather than those who scream for actions which aim to dominate, suppress, oppress and terrorise others.

    More than ever before, we need the words of moderation and compassion to be backed up by action. It is a most desperate hour.

    If this letter appears overly bold, I ask for your forgiveness as it is only because I love this country as much as you do that I write this.

    Please help us by leading the way.


    Azrul Mohd Khalib - Malay Mail

  20. Anonymous11:59 pm

    "All parties should, especially the DAP fellas."


    You can no longer threaten us with your UMNO thugs running AMOK!!!


  21. Anonymous12:04 am

    @ Mohd Daud Sulaiman

    I fully agree with you, sir. However the current situation is not being helped by the lack of understanding of the legal issues at stake, which are very complex.

    I will give you just one example:

    There is a massive assumption, that I have seen almost everywhere in the last 3 days, that the Court of Appeal decision in the "Herald Case" justifies the fact that the word "Allah" cannot be used in the al-Kitab. In fact, the actual judgement in the case states exactly the opposite:

    So far, two ministers have added even more to the confusion by making misguided remarks. And this is just the tip of the iceberg, in terms of the legalities. Nor is it as simple as saying it is a royal decree or based on the Selangor enactment. Even that is complex when the actual provisions of the Federal Constitution are weighed in. And the Federal Constitution, by Article 75, supersedes any state enactment.

    But - people do not want to hear fine legal points when they have been inflamed by politicians. That is the problem. This is too important and urgent an issue to go into the courts again. It will take several years, as I am sure it will reach the Federal Court again. By that time, a lot of damage will happen.

    Some speedy and firm action from the PM is required as soon as possible.

    There is no "win or lose" here. We can only hope that tolerance and common sense win, not politics.

  22. Anonymous1:11 am

    Katakan Wahai orang-orang kafir ! Aku tidak sembah apa yang kamu sembah. Kamu bukan penyembah apa yang aku sembah. Aku bukan penyembah apa yang kamu sembah. Kamu bukan penyembah apa yang aku sembah. Bagi kamu agama kamu. Bagiku agamaku” (Al-Kafirun).

  23. Anonymous8:54 am

    Hello bro,

    35 year old enactment or 35 arabic words??....c'mmon bro, you can do better than this.

    If indeed other words like nabi cannot be used, then perhaps you should consider banning non-muslims from speaking bahasa melayu and arabic altogether.

    What an enactment.

    I give up.

  24. Anonymous2:00 pm

    So what happened to the 10 Point Solution of 2 April 2011 stated below?

    You seem to know so much and quote wisdoms from Helen Ang, now try explain if JAIS observed the 10 points. Good for you to first establish if ALL CIVIL SERVANTS were actually informed by the KSU of the Home Ministry then.

    Kalau boleh, share with us a copy of that 'advice' so that we know what was actually said to the CIVIL SERVANTS.

    1. Bibles in all languages can be imported into the country, including Bahasa Malaysia/ Indonesia.

    2. These Bibles can also be printed locally in Peninsula Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak. This is a new development which should be welcome by the Christian groups.

    3. Bibles in indigenous languages of Sabah and Sarawak such as Iban, Kadazan¬Dusun and Lun Bawang can also be printed locally and imported.

    4. For Sabah and Sarawak, in recognition of the large Christian community in these states, there are no conditions attached to the importation and local printing of the Bibles in all languages, including Bahasa Malaysia/ Indonesia and indigenous languages. There is no requirement for any stamp or serial number.

    5. Taking into account the interest of the larger Muslim community, for Peninsula Malaysia, Bibles in Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia, imported or printed, must have the words “Christian Publication” and the cross sign printed on the front covers.

    6. In the spirit of 1Malaysia and recognising that many people travel between Sabah and Sarawak and Peninsula Malaysia, there should be no prohibitions and restrictions for people who bring along their bibles and Christian materials on such travel.

    7. A directive on the Bible has been issued by the Ketua Setiausaha (KSU) of the Home Ministry to ensure proper implementation of this cabinet decision. Failure to comply will subject the officers to disciplinary action under the General Orders. A comprehensive briefing by top officials, including the Attorney General (AG), will be given to all relevant civil servants to ensure good understanding and proper implementation of the directive (See Attachment 1).

    8. For the impounded Bibles in Kuching, Gideon, the importer can collect all the 30,000 Bibles free of charge. We undertake to ensure the parties involved are reimbursed. The same offer remains available for the importer of the 5,100 Bibles in Port Kiang, which have already been collected by the Bible Society Malaysia (BSM) last week.

    9. Beyond the Bible issue, the Government wishes to reiterate its commitment to work with the Christian groups and all the different religious groups in order to address interreligious issues and work towards the fulfilment of all religious aspirations in accordance with the constitution, taking into account the other relevant laws of the country. In order to bring urgency to this work, in my capacity as the Prime Minister, I will meet the representatives of the Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) soon to discuss the way forward.

    10. The Christian Ministers in the cabinet will meet on a regular basis with representatives of the various Christian groups in order to discuss their issues and work with the relevant Ministries and myself in order to resolve them. As the leader of this country, I wish to reiterate the Government’s commitment in solving any religious issues in this country. There is a need to manage polarities that exist in our society to achieve peace and harmony. I believe the best way to achieve this is through respect, tolerance, forgiveness and reconciliation.

  25. Anonymous12:44 am

    Hafiz Ahmad: Lu macam bagus. Please don't logic in entirety but refer al-quran & sunnah to support your argument.

    Anonymous 11.21, 11.22 & 11.26: pergi blah. islam is the official religion and prioritised.
    Bulshit you and your Allah claims. You don't understand Islam- it is not a religion you can switch faith at your fancy.

  26. Anonymous12:56 am

    Alarmed by a shock raid and seizure of over 300 bibles in Malay and Bahasa Iban, Sabah Christian leaders urged the Najib administration to keep to its promises and uphold their constitutional right to freedom of religion to clear the way to lasting interfaith harmony in Malaysia.

    Sabah pastor Rev Datuk Jerry Dusing described the Islamic law enforcers’ raid on the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) in Petaling Jaya, Selangor as arbitrary and “very disrespectful to other people’s faith” when the Federal Constitution guarantees Christians the freedom to practise their faith peacefully.

    “Jais’s decision to me is tantamount to being disrespectful and without any reference to the good faith gesture by the prime minister,” the head of the Sabah Sidang Injil Borneo (SIB) church told The Malay Mail Online, referring to the Cabinet’s 10-point solution in 2011 which allowed the Christian community to print, import and distribute bibles containing the word “Allah’.

    The country’s 2.6 million Christian population, 60 per cent of which is Bumiputera and live in the two Borneo states of Sabah and Sarawak, have been largely unaffected by the interfaith conflict over the word “Allah” in the peninsula.

    But a raid last Thursday by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) on the bible distributor’s office, which led to hundreds of bibles in their native languages treated like contraband, have renewed concern among Bumiputera Christians over the long-term practice of their faith.

    Following the seizure, the Association of Churches in Sarawak (ACS) likened Jais’s raid to “treason”, adding that it “violates the Federal Constitution and pays total disregard to” the 10-point solution.

    “And for those of us in Sabah and Sarawak, we look at this action with great concern because there is the 18-point, 20-point agreement in the formation of Malaysia. What is the long-term implication if we look at the arbitrariness of Jais’s action?” asked Dusing.

    The Sabah pastor was referring to the 18-point and 20-point agreements promising religious freedom to Sarawak and Sabah respectively before Malaysia was formed in 1963.

    “Of course the ministers have always been telling us that the Herald case is an isolated case, but obviously the Jais action shows very clearly that the intention is much wider,” he added.

  27. Anonymous12:56 am

    Despite the government’s previous assurance that the Court of Appeal’s decision last October — which upheld a ban on the word “Allah” in Catholic weekly, Herald — would not affect the Christian community in east Malaysia, the Jais raid has cast doubt on the extent of the ruling’s applicability.

    Sabah church leader Bishop Dr Thomas Tsen said he was sad and disappointed over Jais’s actions, pointing out that it had happened despite the guarantee of the freedom to print bibles under the 10-point solution.

    “All this while we have no problems, Sabah can get supply from the Bible Society to print for us those copies (of Alkitab),” said the Basel church leader, adding that the churches were supporting the government’s promotion of the national language Bahasa Malaysia.

    A Muslim demonstrator stands outside Malaysia’s Court of Appeal, along with others, in Putrajaya, outside Kuala Lumpur October 14, 2013. — Reuters pic

    According to Tsen, the bible in the Kadazandusun language — used by one of Sabah’s indigenous tribes — does not contain the word “Allah”, but over 60 per cent of the Sabahan Christians use the word in their weekly Bahasa Malaysia services.

    He similarly noted the prime minister’s assurance last year that Sabah and Sarawak would not be affected by the Herald case, while urging the public to pray for a “peaceful and respectful resolution”.

    “We, as a church, we want peace to prevail, we want justice to prevail. We want to be treated as a Malaysian citizen who is being treated fair, with fairness that everybody can enjoy.

    “We pray, continue to pray for our country, for our prime minister, for his leadership to really see how to take wise, respectful and fair actions to everybody,” said Tsen, who is also the Sabah Council of Churches president.

    Esther Golingi, the leader of a grassroots movement of Christian leaders from the native tribes of Kadazandusun and Murut in Sabah, said Jais’s raid was an “unlawful interference” with the constitutional right to practise and regulate one’s own faith, noting that this incident has affected “all Malaysians”.

    “We are all Malaysians under one country and one law. There’s no two sets of law,” the Perpaduan Anak Negeri Sabah (PAN) chairperson told The Malay Mail Online in an apparent show of solidarity for those in the Peninsula Malaysia, where some Muslims claim the word ‘Allah’ was exclusive to Islam.

    “With this episode, there is an urgent need to uphold freedom of religion,” she added.

    She expressed PAN’s sadness “that this happened right in front of our eyes where authorities are taking the law into their own hand”, before asking the government’s assurance for religious freedom.

    “Now, where is the 10-point solution, the Constitution and the Malaysia agreement? We the Anak Negeri demand an answer from Prime Minister Najib Razak and his Cabinet for the assurance of religious freedom to us,” she said.

    On Thursday, BSM said its customers are not limited to the churches in Sabah and Sarawak, but also include Sabahan and Sarawakian Christians, Orang Asli churches and other Malay-speaking Christians in the peninsula.

    Christians make up about 10 per cent of the Malaysian population, or 2.6 million. Almost two-thirds of them are Bumiputera and are largely based in Sabah and Sarawak, where they routinely use Bahasa Malaysia and indigenous languages in their religious practices, including describing God as “Allah” in their prayers and holy book. - Malay Mail

  28. Anonymous1:02 am

    Social activist Marina Mahathir slammed government leaders for failing to speak up when conservative groups threatened to demonstrate in front of churches over the past week.

    Muslim pressure group Solidariti Ummah Klang is demanding that Christians conform to a government ban that prevents them from using the word 'Allah', which they say is exclusive for Muslims.

    Marina this morning turned up in front of the Lady of Lourdes Church in Klang with some 40 people, mostly Muslims, in solidarity with Christians as the Muslim group protested at a nearby field.

    She hit out at the government for refusing to rein in such conservative groups that have taken a confrontational stance.

    "Our leaders should not be silent. Everyone is complaining that the silence is deafening and far from elegant. It is certainly incriminating.

    "Everyone is alarmed. I'm not alone in this. Everyone is asking, where are our leaders? As a great leader, he should be here, not us," she said without naming names.

    When asked if she was referring to Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak, she replied, "Whoever. He should be here. As a leader he should be better than us."

    She also condemned Thursday's raid by the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department (Jais) on the Bible Society of Malaysia where 351 Malay and Iban language bible which used the word 'Allah' were confiscated.

    "We are now known as a country where people grab bibles from a house of worship. Is that how we want to be known?

    "We can forget about Visit Malaysia Year, (the situation) is hardly an example of moderation," she said.

    'Christians have right to Allah'

    Marina, who is the daughter of former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, added that Christians should be allowed to use the word 'Allah' as it is within their own congregation and they are not propagating their religion to Muslims.

    She said the newly set up National Unity Consultative Council by the government, of which she is a member, will hold its first meeting tomorrow and the raid will be the first item on the agenda.

    Among the groups that took up arms against the Christians was Selangor Umno, who last week also threatened to protest in front of churches after Christian publication The Herald editor Lawrence Andrew insisted that Christian will continue to use the word 'Allah'.

    Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin's thumbs up for the move drew a backlash of fire from critics.

    Yesterday, Selangor Umno did an about turn and banned its members from attending such rallies, citing the need to maintain harmony.

    The controversy began when in 2010 the High Court ruled that the Home Ministry's earlier ban on The Herald from using the word 'Allah was unconstitutional.

    The landmark decision provoked a series of church burnings and the Court of Appeal last year overturned the decision arguing that the word 'Allah' was not integral to the Christian faith.

    The Catholic Church is appealing the decision and insists that Islamic authorities have no power to dictate the internal affairs of other religions. - Mkini

  29. Anonymous12:11 am

    Pepatah orang tua-tua ada menyebut, sesat di tengah jalan, kembalilah ke pangkal jalan. Pepatah ini membawa makna yang cukup mendalam dan signifikan dengan kehidupan seharian kita. Apabila kita sesat di tengah hutan dan hilang punca arah tujuan, jalan paling selamat ialah carilah jalan di mana kita bermula.

    Dalam kehidupan seharian juga begitu sebenarnya. Apabila kita hilang punca untuk menyelesaikan sesuatu perkara atau masalah, cubalah cari di manakah puncanya. Hanya dengan mengetahui punca dan di mana bermulanya sesuatu masalah itu, barulah sebarang kekusutan dapat dirungkai dan diatasi.

    Begitu juga dalam isu kalimah Allah yang kembali menghangatkan persekitaran kita sekarang ini. Sekarang ini bukan saja berlaku berbalas-balas kenyataan dalam media untuk mempertahankan pendirian masing-masing, malah sudah merebak sehingga mahu mengadakan demontrasi di depan gereja. Tidak mustahil jika demonstrasi di depan gereja dibenarkan, selepas ini akan berlaku demo di depan masjid oleh bukan Islam pula. Dalam masa yang sama, perasaan curiga-mencurigai mula bercambah dan akan terus menebal antara penganut Islam dan Kristian di negara ini.

    Walaupun demonstasi yang dirancang oleh UMNO Selangor di depan sebuah gereja di Kelang dibatalkan dan digantikan dengan demonstrasi di padang Kelab Sultan Sulaiman, Kelang dan hanya dihadiri sejumlah kecil daripada beberapa NGO dan kalangan pemimpin UMNO Selangor juga, hakikatnya keharmonian antara Islam dan Kristian sudah tercemar.

    Berbalas kenyataan, berdemonstrasi dan saling tuduh-menuduh tidak akan menyelesaikan pertikaian mengenai penggunaan nama Allah ini jika punca masalahnya tidak dicari. Jika kita imbas kembali punca pertikaian penggunaan nama Allah ini adalah berpunca daripada kelemahan kerajaan dan sikap dua wajah Najib sendiri dalam menangani isu ini.

  30. Anonymous5:21 pm

    Korang nak berperang dgn ARAB non Muslims jugak ke sbb diorang guna ALLAH jugak.