Court Orders Return of Confiscated Christian CDs

July 21, 2014

Malaysiakini Jul 21, 2014

The Kuala Lumpur High Court has ordered the Home Ministry and government to return the eight Christian religious CDs with the word “Allah” that it seized from Sarawakian Christian Jill Ireland in May 2008.

However, Justice Zaleha Yusof declined to rule on the constitutional prayers under Article 8, 11, sought by Jill.

Justice Zaleha ruled that the senior authorised officer from the Customs Department Suzana Muin, who issued the seizure order, had acted illegally in withholding the CDs as such powers lie with the home minister.

She held that the respondents had acted in error of the law under Section 9 of the Printing Presses and Publication Act 1984, by withholding the CDs.

“Suzana acted ultra vires as such detention (of CDs) must be authorised by the minister himself and is not delegated to anyone else.

“Following this, the CDs are to be returned to the plaintiff. Though this is a public interest case, I order respondents to pay RM500 costs,” Justice Zaleha ruled. Read the rest of this entry »

‘Allah’ Controversy Resurfaces in Another Court

June 30, 2014

Highlights: [Lead Counsel] Lim said Jill Ireland is seeking justice from the court. “This case is not about Christians pitting themselves against Muslims; Christianity against Islam…but a native Bumiputera Chritian seeking her constitutional rights…

Lim pointed out that the supremacy of the constitution and the rule of law appear to have been seriously subverted and transplanted by the alien doctrine of supremacy of the religious bureaucracy and the rule and dictates of the religious authority…the involvement of JAKIM, the federal Islamic Development agency, brings another objectionable feature of the administration of the Printing Presses and Publicatins Act 1984 (PPPA) by the minister and government into focus.

“There is clear evidence of surrender of discretionary power to an extraneous third party. As noted above, one of the three (3) grounds cited is “Melanggar Garis Panduan JAKIM”. Here we have a department which is not vested with any lawful authority in the administration of the PPPA dictating and directing how an officer under the PPPA is to exercise his powers,” he said.

Lim asked, “Are we governed by rule of law or religious bureaucracy?”

“Are we a nation governed by rule of law or religious bureaucracy?” – See more at: http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/even-the-quran-says-allah-used-by-christians-and-jews-high-court-told#sthash.WY5kyjbV.dpuf“It is submitted that viewed objectively it is evident that rather than exercising an independent statutory discretionary power, the Minister had acted under the dictation of JAKIM.”.

He also said the Respondents who are Federal Government and a Federal Minister have taken upon themselves the constitutional power to control or restrict propagation of religious doctrine or faith among Muslims. This is a jurisdiction vested in the various state legislative assemblies pursuant to Article 11(4) of the Federal Constitution.

“The Respondent’s action constitutes an act on the part of the Federal Government and its officials using the PPPA to enforce the several state enactments controlling and restricting propagation. Enforcement of the enactment with regard to Selangor is by “authorized officers” appointed by the Ruler in Council. This is tantamount to a collateral use of the PPPA by federal agencies to enforce state enactments which are for the states to determine and not the Federal Government. Thus, the disputed decision constitutes not only unlawful and unconstitutional usurpation of state powers under the guise of the PPPA but also a colourable excuse and collateral use of the PPPA,”Lim said.

Read the rest of this entry »

Bar Council: MAIS/JAIS Should Abide by AG’s Decision & Federal Constitution and Release Seized Alkitab & Bup Kudus

June 21, 2014

___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

Majlis Peguam

Bar Council Malaysia

Press Release
MAIS and JAIS Should Adhere to the Attorney General’s Decision and Abide by the Federal Constitution

The Malaysian Bar supports the Attorney General’s decision not to prosecute the Bible Society of Malaysia (“BSM”) over the more than 300 copies of the Alkitab (Bahasa Malaysia bible) and Bup Kudus (Iban bible) that contained the word “Allah” and that were seized by Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (“JAIS”) on 2 January 2014.
The Malaysian Bar views with much concern reports of the refusal by Majlis Agama Islam Selangor (“MAIS”) and JAIS to abide by the findings of the Attorney General and to comply with his request that JAIS take consequential and appropriate action in accordance with the law. Read the rest of this entry »

Judge Rules Civil Court Superior to Syariah

May 30, 2014

Malaysiakini 20 May 2014
The civil High Court has a higher jurisdiction than the syariah court on the religious dispute of a spouse who does not convert to Islam, the High Court in Ipoh ruled today.
In giving convert father K Pathmanathan @ Muhammad Ridhuan Abdullah one week to return his six-year-old daughter to the non-Muslim mother, M Indira Gandhi, the court also found the father guilty of contempt.

Judge Lee Swee Seng said failure to hand over the child would require the police to enforce a warrant of arrest on Pathmanathan for committing contempt and not abiding by the court order.

Reading out his two-and-a-half hour judgment, Justice Lee said the supervisory jurisdiction of the civil High Court is based on the fact that a syariah court decision cannot bind a non-Muslim party in a marriage.

He said the country practises secular law under which the civil High Court has unlimited jurisdiction and is superior in nature to the syariah court. Read the rest of this entry »

Sabahans Slam their Christian leaders in Cabinet for Remaining Silent on Religious Issues

February 22, 2014

PRESS STATEMENT (22 Feb 2014) by Perpaduan Anak Negeri Sabah

Officiated by Bishop Datuk Cornelius Piong.

Precis: History tells us that on 1 August 1972, the then Chief Minister of Sabah, Tun Mustapha Harun announced the policy of unity under the USNO government as “one language, one culture, one religion” in Kota Kinabalu in the presence of the then Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman and his deputy Tun Razak Hussein.

The following year on 27 Sept 1973, the State Constitution of Sabah was amended to make Islam the religion of Sabah.

This is in gross violation of the 20-point agreement that Sabah insisted before consenting to confederate with Malaya, Sarawak and Singapore to form Malaysia. The first point is that there should be complete freedom of religion in Sabah. We only agree to Islam being the religion of the Federation and not Sabah and that Malaysia is to be a secular country.

Today, after 42 years of the “one language, one culture, one religion” policy, the Anak Negeri has become restless wanderers and aliens worst that second -class citizens in our own land. This is our history, a history of a betrayed people. If we forget our history, we forfeit our destiny as a people called forth by God for His glory alone. Read the rest of this entry »

Native Christians Want PM Datuk Seri Najib to Act Against Political Islam

January 25, 2014

Press Statement by Perpaduan Anak Negri (PAN) Sabah 25 Jan 2014

In Sabah, we are one big family with Christians and Muslims living in peace and harmony side by side even within the same family.  But we want to make it very plain that for the past 50 years we have been in Malaysia, we have been facing threats from extreme political Islam to systematically eradicate  our cultural heritage as Christians and our ethnicity as Anak Negeri, the true sons and daughters of Sabah.  Some call this a form of genocide.

PM Datuk Seri Najib must lead the way to assure us that he is not only a PM for the Malays but for all Malaysians.  All must be treated fairly and have the freedom to embrace a faith of their choice. We acknowledge Islam is the religion of the Federation, but not extreme political Islam,  in ways not envisaged by the framers of our Federal Constitution. This is the supreme law of the nation and not syariah. Read the rest of this entry »

Did JAIS Act in Accordance with the Law in BSM Raid?

January 23, 2014

The STAR reported on 23 Jan 2013 that,

Only police officers with the rank of Inspector or higher are permitted to make seizures without warrants depending on the circumstances. Under Section 62 of the Criminal Proce­dure Code (CPC), only such officers are allowed to enter premises and conduct seizures without warrants, provided they have plausible cause to do so. Read the rest of this entry »

Bible Raid: Federal Govt Cannot Act Like Pontius Pilate Wash its Hands

January 19, 2014

Bible Raid – Betwixt and Between Federal and State By Andrew Khoo
Malaysiakini 19 Jan 2014 LINK

Quite early on in the aftermath of the raid on the premises of the Bible Society of Malaysia on Jan 2 by officers from the Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor, accompanied by members of the police, politicians from the government and also federal ministers, had begun suggesting that instead of criticising the federal government, blame for the raid should be directed at the Selangor state government, since issues relating to the religion of Islam are a state matter under the federal constitution. Read the rest of this entry »

CFM’s Clear and United Stand & a Challenge to the Government to Come Clean on the Allah Issue

January 19, 2014

Officials from JAIS insist that they are legally empowered to raid Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) and seize the Alkitab (Malay Bibles) since it contains the Allah word. JAIS is defying instructions from the Selangor government to return the Bibles to underscore their claim of legality. As is the case of political contestations, the tussle between JAIS (with support from UMNO) and the Selangor state government will drag on for some time.

Regardless, the dispute is best resolved if BSM decides to take the matter to the Civil court to seek redress against JAIS officials for their threats of forceful entry into BSM premises and illegal confiscation of the Alkitab. After all, no one would dare accuse BSM of playing politics as it would be a case of the victim seeking justice. In this regard, JAIS is undoubtedly pleased that so far BSM has not taken legal actions against it, as the absence of legal action by BSM would amount to BSM’s implicit recognition of JAIS (dubious) legal claim, and arguably sets a precedent for further raids against other Christian institutions in the future. Read the rest of this entry »

Media Statement 15 Jan 2014: CFM Deeply Concerned Over Recent Acts of Escalating Tensions

January 15, 2014

The Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) notes with deep concern the recent acts of escalating tensions on the part of certain groups in respect of the use of the term “Allah” by the Christian community in Malaysia.

In particular we refer to four incidents: the continued singling out of Father Lawrence Andrew, the editor of The Herald, for criticism and threats of “mega demonstrations” against him; the advertisement placed in The Star on Saturday 11 January 2014 by the head of the Majlis Agama Islam Selangor attempting to justify the raid by the Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor on the premises of the Bible Society of Malaysia on 2 January 2014; the demonstration near Shekinah Glory AG Church, Klang on Saturday morning 4 January 2014; and the demonstration by a group of approximately 100 people outside Metro Tabernacle Church in Gombak on Sunday morning 12 January 2014.

We are of the view that none of these incidents was either helpful or prudent in the current environment. Read the rest of this entry »


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