G25, Another Voice Of Liberal Muslims?

21 08 2015

The Malaysia Insider reported that a “group of retired Malay civil servants of G25 against religious extremism plans to seek an audience with the Malay rulers to petition for a committee that will review the application of Islam in Malaysian law.”
G25 wrote an open letter dated December 7, 2014 (please click here for the open letter) among others expressed that they are disturbed and deeply dismayed “over the continuing unresolved disputes on the position and application of Islamic laws in this country” and stated that “the teachings of our faith must continue to evolve” to be relevant.
They wrote that:

“The on-going debate over these matters display a lack of clarity and understanding on the place of Islam within our constitutional democracy.”

Actually, there should not be any question about the place of Islam within our constitution because it is clearly stated in Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia that Islam is the religion of the Federation and the oath pledged by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong as in accordance to Article 37(1) is made in the name of Allah, “Wallahi Wabillahi Watallahi” and the Yang di-Pertuan Agong pledges to uphold Islam at all time.

Article 3(1) said that:

“Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.”

Article 37(1) stated that the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong needs to take his oath before exercising his functions:

“The Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall before exercising his functions take and subscribe before the Conference of Rulers and in the presence of the Chief Justice of the Federal Court (or in his absence the next senior judge of the Federal Court available) the oath of office set out in Part I of the Fourth Schedule; and the oath shall be attested by two persons appointed for the purpose by the Conference of Rulers.”

The oath pledged by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong:

“Wallahi: Wabillahi: Watallahi,

Maka dengan lafaz ini berikrarlah Kami dengan sesungguhnya dan dengan sebenarnya mengaku akan taat setia pada menjalankan dengan adilnya pemerintahan bagi Malaysia dengan mengikut sebagaimana undang-undang dan Perlembagaan yang telah disahkan dan dimasyurkan dan akan disah dan dimasyurkan di masa hadapan ini. Dan lagi Kami berikrar mengaku dengan sesungguh dan dengan sebenarnya memeliharakan pada setiap masa Agama Islam dan berdiri tetap di atas permintaan yang adil dan aman di dalam Negeri.”

G25 also wrote:

“We refer specifically to the current situation where religious bodies seem to be asserting authority beyond their jurisdiction; where issuance of various fatwa violate the Federal Constitution and breach the democratic and consultative process of shura; where the rise of supremacist NGOs accusing dissenting voices of being anti-Islam, anti-monarchy and anti-Malay has made attempts at rational discussion and conflict resolution difficult; and most importantly, where the use of the Sedition Act hangs as a constant threat to silence anyone with a contrary opinion. These developments undermine Malaysia’s commitment to democratic principles and rule of law, breed intlerance and bigotry, and have heightened anxieties over national peace and stability.”

Contrary to the accusation made by G25, the religious bodies are not “asserting authority beyond their jurisdiction, but they are doing their job to uphold Islam as the religion of the Federation as stated under Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution.

“…the rise of supremacist NGOs accusing dissenting voices of being anti-Islam, anti-monarchy and anti-Malay has made attempts at rational discussion and conflict resolution difficult…” – G25

From the above statement I guess the NGOs that G25 called supremacist are the Malay and Islamic NGOs who are fighting to uphold Islam which is the religion of the Federation as written in Article 3(1) and protecting the rights of the Malays as written in Article 153 of the Federal Constitution.
I just wonder why the Malays of G25 are so disturbed by people fighting for Islam and the rights of the Malays?
And why is G25 quiet when liberal NGOs like COMANGO questioned, humiliated and challenged Islam, the Malays rights and our Rulers?
Does G25 think that it is constitutional when people like Lim Kit Siang, Eric Paulsen and Tony Pua humiliate and slender Islam, the Friday Sermon and JAKIM?
What about some illegal coalition of NGOs such as BERSIH who went against the law by organising illegal street demonstrations, with the hope to topple a democratically elected government?
G25 also attacked Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom for doing his job as the minister in charge of the Islamic affairs:

“…we are particularly concerned with the statement issued by Minister Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom, in response to the recent Court of Appeal judgement on the right of transgendered women to dress according to their identity.”

Calling the Sedition Act as a tool to silence the voices with a contrary opinion shows that one does not understand the Sedition Act.
According to Tan Sri Aziz Abdul Rahman, (please refer to this article) the Sedition Act or Akta Hasutan was written after the government identified four serious issues as one of the major causes of the serious 1969 racial riot:

  • Article 153 of the Federal Constitution: Special Rights For The Malays
  • Article 152 of the Federal Constitution: Malay As The National Language
  • Part III: of the Citizenship Rights                 
  • Article 181 of the Federal Constitution: Rights, Status, Sovereignty Of The Rulers

I just do not understand why G25 members want the four sensitive issues to be questioned when open debates on the four issues could actually “heightened anxieties over national peace and stability.”

The G25 further wrote:

“The Federal Constitution is the supreme law of the land and any law enacted, including Islamic laws, cannot violate the Constitution, in particular the provisions on fundamental liberties, federal-state division of powers and legislative procedures”

How could the Islamic laws violate the Federal Constitution when Islam is the religion of the Federation as stated in Article 3(1) of the the Federal Constitution?
In the ruling of the Court of Appeal’s three-member panel led by Federal Court judge Datuk Seri Mohamed Apandi Ali on the Kalimah Allah case:

[31] It is my observation that the words “in peace and harmony” in Article 3(1) has a historical background and dimension, to the effect that those words are not without significance. The Article places the religion of Islam at par with the other basic structures of the Constitution, as it is the 3 rd in the order of precedence of the Articles that were within the confines of Part I of the Constitution. It is pertinent to note that the fundamental liberties Articles were grouped together subsequently under Part II of the Constitution.

And in the case of Ramah v Laton, it has been decided that the Islamic laws are the laws of the land, so it does not violate the Federal Constitution.

G25 then wrote:

“It is our fervent belief that for Islam to continue to be relevant and universal in our times, the understanding, codification and implementation of the teachings of our faith must continue to evolve.”

We have to follow the real teaching of Islam. We are the Muslims of Ahli Sunnah Wal Jamaah from the Shafie school of thought or madhhab, so this is the guideline followed by our Islamic authorities.
The true teaching of Islam is always relevant, therefore it must never be evolved or liberalised by anybody.





Don’t Want Liberalism, Tear Up The Constitution – Another Malicious Distortion Of The Truth From TMI

11 12 2014

Insider 14

In the above article, The Malaysian Insider (TMI) reported that Professor Ebrahim E. I. Moosa who is a South African, made a statement that “Malaysia was a pluralistic and liberal country”.

He made that statement in reply to a question from the audience regarding the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Jamil Khir Baharom’s statement, “the teachings of liberalism and pluralism are seen as among the most prevalent forms of insult to Islam”.

TMI wrote that:

“The very idea that Malaysia has accepted, constitutionally or otherwise, the plurality of religious and ethnic communities… it is already on the way to liberalism. You are already on a certain kind of liberalism. It might not be an optimal one, but it is already there” – TMI.

I do not know whether Professor Ebrahim understands the word liberalism and pluralism that were mentioned by Datuk Seri Jamil Khir.

Malaysia does accept “the plurality of religious and ethnic communities” but that does not makes Malaysia ‘a pluralistic and liberal country’; furthermore, Malaysia does not accept pluralism of religion.

“The very idea that Malaysia has accepted the plurality of religious and ethnic communities”, shows that our Rulers, the government and the Malays respect other religions and ethnic communities as how Islam teaches us.

But that does not make us liberal.

Professor Ebrahim also said:

“If you want to get away from liberalism, you need to tear up the Malaysian constitution”  Professor Ebrahim E. I. Moosa – TMI

Tear up the Malaysian Constitution if we do not want liberalism?

I do not know if Professor Ebrahim knows what is he talking about, if he thinks he does, he must be so confused or he must has read the constitution of another country!

And this is a malicious distortion of the truth because as an Islamic country, Malaysia does not accept liberalism because it is against the teaching of Islam.

And there is no such word as ‘liberalism’ in our Federal Constitution.

Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia says:

Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may
be practiced in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.

… and we have Article 11(4) to protect the religion of the Federation:

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.

Islam is the only religion mentioned in the Federal Constitution, and Islam is protected by the Federal Constitution and the state laws.

In fact as the religion of the Federation, Islam is above other religions in Malaysian; and that is against the idea of liberalism that rejects state religion.

Moreover, Article 121(1A) of the Federal Constitution recognises the Syariah Court.

Now, if the professor does not understand what is liberalism and pluralism, he should ask somebody.

Liberalism is all about total freedom and pluralism is saying that one’s religion is not the sole and exclusive source of truth, and thus the acknowledgement that at least some truths and true values exist in other religions.

When TMI wrote that, the professor said that, “Malaysia was a pluralistic and liberal country”, I wonder if the word “was” is a typo or he used the word, “was” to indicate that Malaysia was once a pluralistic and liberal country but not anymore.

For the record, Malaysia is neither was nor is a pluralistic and liberal country.

History tells us that Malaysia is always an Islamic country even before our independence.

Actually the existing Islamic laws before Merdeka Day are still valid according to Article 162 of the Federal Constitution which says:

Subject to the following provisions of this Article and Article 
163*, the existing laws shall, until repealed by the authority
having power to do so under this Constitution, continue in force
on and after Merdeka Day, with such modifications as may be
made therein under this Article and subject to any amendments
made by federal or State law.

The professor also told us to learn history:

“The first thing to be done, to the many spokespersons who are saying these things, is a quick lesson in Malaysian history… Malaysian history 101… to re-familiarise themselves” -TMI.

Actually the person who needs to learn history is him and most of those who supported the above TMI article!

And above all, since he is not a Malaysian and since he just came to Malaysia, he should not interfere in local issues that he knows nothing about.

He might want to say that as a scholar, he should know better about our Federal Constitution than others including our Federal Constitution experts like Dato’ Naser Disa and Professor Shamrahayu.

But, has he ever read the Federal Constitution and does he know that it takes a lawyer to interpret law and constitution?

I hope that the government can take stern actions on those who make such a malicious distortion of the truth regarding the Federal Constitution of Malaysia including foreigners because our Federal Constitution is the highest law and something like the pillar of our country.

Those ‘scholars’ are bringing bad influences as they being used by certain groups to influence the public into believing something fictitious in order to serve their hidden agendas and this could cause racial and religious disharmony among the people.

And these so called “Muslim scholars” are spreading the ideologies of liberalism and pluralism as the teaching of Islam when these ideologies are actually part of deviant teaching.








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