Archive for the ‘Human Rights Fundamental Liberties’ Category

Hadi’s Bill-Amendment to Act355 Will Affect Non-Muslims

March 8, 2017

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Hadi’s Bill Will Affect Non-Muslims, Says Kelantan Lawyer

Sheith Khidhir Bin Abu Bakar FMT News March 8, 2017

KUALA LUMPUR: To find out whether PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang’s private member’s bill affects non-Muslims, just take a look at Kelantan, says a lawyer from the state.

Nik Elin Rashid said events showed that shariah laws were being imposed on non-Muslim citizens in the PAS-led state. For example, she said a non-Muslim owner of a watch shop had been fined for displaying a poster of Bollywood actress Aishwarya Rai with her hair uncovered.
In the past, when cinemas were allowed in Kelantan, she said the movies screened only showed actresses with covered hair.
Nik Elin said the PAS government in Kelantan did not take steps to ensure shariah laws applied only to Muslims.

“Instead, they set the laws through the city councils which then implemented the policies, such as that anyone who wants to work in a supermarket must cover her hair,” Nik Elin said at a forum on a public action plan against the amendments to Act 355, in Brickfields here last night….

Bebas spokesman Azrul Mohd Khalib, who was present, said because the amended laws for Muslims would be disproportionately harsher, they would eventually be imposed on non-Muslims as well. “You’re going to hear people say it’s not fair, we want things equal as is stipulated under the Federal Constitution.” (more…)

CFM Media Statement on Threats of Violence & Intimidation Against People of Faith

February 19, 2017

Please pray for Pastor Raymond Koh and his family.

cfm-statement-violence-intimidation-threats-2017

To download the pdf file: imagescfm-statement-violence-intimidation-threats-2017

Shariah Law has no Consequences on Non-Muslims? HUMBUG

February 10, 2017

** You may be interested to visit  www.krisispraxis.com to read full post and comment it:

Shariah Law as no Consequences on Non-Muslims? HUMBUG.

UMNO will be lending a helping hand to PAS to push a Bill through Parliament which would amend the Shariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965, also known as Act 355. The amendments would extend power to the Islamic courts to enforce heavier punishment for Islamic offences. PAS President Abdul Hadi Awang and UMNO leaders assure non-Muslims that the proposed amendments will not affect non-Muslims. Re: Hadi to Make More Amendments to Shariah Bill] [FMT 23 Nov 2016]

Non-Muslims are naturally skeptical towards the assurances from PAS and UMNO. Both the local and international media have sounded the alarm that the amendments would encourage further imposition of Islamic regulations onto non-Muslims.

The reality is that the Civil services and shariah authorities have periodically taken the liberty to impose Islamic scruples and regulations onto non-Muslims, even though they are technically not empowered to do so. Having been victimized by ‘over-zealous’ officials from both the Civil services and shariah authorities (who are never taken to task for their abuse of power), non-Muslims can only regard the assurance from Hadi and UMNO leaders to be both hollow and disingenuous.

It is sobering to recall some of these alarming incidents. (more…)

Be Assured that Syariah Law WILL be Imposed on non-Muslims

August 10, 2016

PAS politicians and some UMNO government officials repeatedly assure non-Muslims that that Syariah law will not be applied to them even as Abdul Hadi Awang tables the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) (Amendment) Bill 2016 to widen the scope of the criminal jurisdiction of Syariah Courts. However, non-Muslims have reasons to doubt whether the assurance is empty, if not disingenuous, when the authorities in Kelantan and officials in various government departments repeatedly impose public policies that infringe on the fundamental liberties of non-Muslims. It is the duty of every conscientious Member of Parliament to reject any proposed legislation that violates the provisions in the Federal Constitution that protect the rights of non-Muslims and Muslims against punitive criminal actions based on religious precepts.

Beware when the wolf ‘courteously’ invites the lamb for supper in his den when it is seen sharpening its claws and teeth.

Read also Shad Faruqi’s analysis on the wider implications of the Syariah Courts Amendment Bill given below: Enhancing Syariah Courts’ Powers. (more…)

National Security Council (NSC) Act : A Lurch Towards Authoritarian Government

August 1, 2016

Press Release (3 Dec 2015): The National Security Council Bill 2015 is a Lurch Towards an Authoritarian Government

This item has been updated since initial publication.

The Malaysian Bar is alarmed by the proposed National Security Council Bill 2015 (“the Bill”) that was tabled in the Dewan Rakyat on 1 December 2015 by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Dato’ Seri Shahidan Kassim, and which is reportedly scheduled for its second reading today.  The basis for this new law is unclear, and the manner in which it is being rushed through the Dewan Rakyat is inexcusable.

The Bill is an insidious piece of legislation that confers and concentrates vast executive powers in a newly created statutory body called the National Security Council (“NSC”). (more…)

MCCBCHST: WE REJECT THE PRIVATE MEMBERS BILL ON HUDUD

June 1, 2016

Henceforth, the new Hudud Bill or the “Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) (Amendment) Bill 2016” that is tabled in Parliament should be called UMNO-PAS Hudud Bill. After all, without special assistance from UMNO, the Bill that was tabled by PAS (Hadi) would not get a chance to be debated in Parliament. If passed, the Bill will place the Federal Constitution on a slippery slide leading to a Shariah dominated Constitution. Malaysia will go the way of Pakistan where religious minorities (Christians) are often subject to false accusations and punishment under the Islamic Blasphemy Law. Nearer home, we should be alarmed at the prospect of non-Muslims being caned for  ‘violating’ Islamic offences: Re: “Woman, 60, Caned for Selling Alcohol in Aceh” StraitsTimes (14 April 2016); See Also “For First Time in Indonesia, non-Muslim Caned under Islamic law” LosAngelesTimes (16 April 2016). (more…)

CFM Against Curbing Religious Expression and Increasing Religious Repression

May 22, 2015

CFM MEDIA STATEMENT images

CFM Statement Against Increasing Religious Repression May2015

CFM AGAINST SHRINKING PUBLIC SPACE FOR RELIGIOUS EXPRESSION AND INCREASING RELIGIOUS REPRESSION
The Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) has observed with deep concern the ever-shrinking public space for religious expression in Malaysia. The CFM also notes the worrying trend of curbing freedom of religious expressions without prior consultation with stakeholders. The overall environment of religious acceptance and understanding deteriorates as the country is dragged from one incident of intolerance to another.

 
The recent controversy surrounding the demand by a group of Muslims for the removal of the sign of the cross from a church in Taman Medan in Selangor is but the latest expression of that intolerance. Even the central symbol of our faith, the cross, which is the symbol of love and sacrifice of God for humankind is now seen or projected by some as a threat. It joins the list of other expressions of intolerance, including a continuing push for prohibition against religious words and expressions in Bahasa Malaysia which have been commonly used in Christian worship even before our nation was born. There is the fear that common parlance results in influence, propagation and conversion. This fear has caused tension and has led to numerous incidents in recent years where copies of the Al-Kitab, our sacred book, were detained or out-rightly seized, only to be returned after they were mutilated by endorsements of prohibitive words.

 
Worse, it is now proposed that the importation of the Al-Kitab be subject to newly-announced administrative requirements and procedures in Sabah and Sarawak albeit in draft form for discussion. The latest edition of these administrative requirements contain outright prohibitions of importation of the Al-Kitab into Peninsular Malaysia, save for personal use, in total violation of the Federal Constitution’s protection for freedom of religion.

(more…)

New curbs for Malay Bibles

April 29, 2015

MALAYSIAKINI By Bob Teoh 29 April 2015

Putrajaya has unilaterally introduced new curbs on the import of the Alkitab, or the Malay-language Bible, under the Home Ministry’s new SOP or standard operating procedures. It also affects the import and use of other Malay-language Christian publications.

But Joseph Kurup, the de facto national unity minister who unveiled the SOP last week is quick to assure church leaders that Barisan Nasional is “sworn” to protect their freedom of religion as guaranteed by the federal constitution.

This is far from the truth. The new SOP specifically targets Christians and concerns mainly the import and use of the Alkitab. Such imports are now subject to a law that was originally intended only for Muslims – the Printing of Qur’anic Texts Act 1986. Importers must now apply to the Qura’nic Text Division of the Home Ministry which has the final say whether such imports are allowed.

The sole criterion is that such publications cannot contain the word ‘Allah’. This is clearly in contravention of constitutional provisions for freedom of religion.

Article 11 (3a) of the federal constitution states, among other things, “Every religious group has the right to manage its own religious affairs.” The right for Malay-speaking bumiputra Christians to have their own Scriptures in the Malay language is an inalienable universal human right and Putrajaya should not interfere in ecclesiastical matters of other faiths. Two-thirds of the church in Malaysia comprise Malay-speaking bumiputras in East Malaysia.

What is alarming is that the new SOP comes at a time when the very constitutionality of the prohibition of the use of the word ‘Allah’ to refer God by Bumiputra Christians is still being litigated in the courts known as the Jill Ireland Sarawak and Sidang Injil Borneo (SIB) Sabah cases. To introduce the new SOP at this stage smacks of not only religious hegemony and arrogance but it also borders on contempt. (more…)

Sedition Amendments a Dire Blow to Rule of Law

April 17, 2015

Malaysiakini 17 April 2015 LINK

Related: See below for press statement by United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights

Press statement by:

Steven Thiru, Malaysian Bar president
Leonard Shim, Advocates’ Association of Sarawak president
GBB Nandy @ Gaanesh, Sabah Law Association president

 

The Malaysian Bar, the Advocates’ Association of Sarawak and the Sabah Law Association are appalled by the amendments to the Sedition Act 1948 passed by the Dewan Rakyat in the early hours of 10 April 2015.

We are extremely disappointed that the Malaysian Government has not only reneged from the promise made in 2012 to repeal the Sedition Act 1948 and replace it with the National Harmony Act, but has substantially strengthened the former with drastic and oppressive provisions.

The Sedition Act 1948 is an archaic, obsolete, and regressive law that must be abolished. It severely restricts, or even extinguishes, the freedom of speech and expression, and hence tramples on the constitutional rights of Malaysians. It is the antithesis of democracy, justice, and human rights.

The amendments to the Sedition Act 1948 have dealt a crippling blow to the rule of law in Malaysia, and lend weight to the widely held public perception that we are becoming an intolerant authoritarian state.
The democratic space for frank, meaningful, and robust discourse has been palpably reduced.

The amendments reinforce the concern that the limits to freedom of speech and expression are to be determined by those in our society who are not open to adverse comments or contrary ideas, or who are easily offended or angered. This nurtures an environment of intemperance and intolerance.

The amendments passed by the Dewan Rakyat will result in a false sense of unity and harmony that is actually created by intimidation and a climate of fear. This perpetuates insecurity and suspicion amongst our citizenry, and does not augur well for the growth and maturity of our nation. (more…)