This was the headline on the first day of Ramadhan, 27 May 2017.
It would have read differently had it read Muslims Observe Ramadhan Today and left the ‘terrorist’ headline on Page 3. It cannot be THAT important if its report was on Page 3.
The headline above sparked anger among Muslims in Malaysia from the first day of Ramadhan until almost the end of the second day. A full 36 hours after it was published which prompted The Star to issue a half-hearted apology.
This only further incensed the Muslims.
Veteran journalist Datuk Ahiruddin Atan aka Rocky Bru wrote on his Facebook account:
What is more interesting is the comment left by renowned blogger BigDog:
Joceline Tan, a The Star columnist who writes mostly leaning towards the current government was not defended by her GEIC (Group Editor-in-Chief) when attacked at the Group’s AGM.
It has also come to light that the GEIC, Datuk Leanne Goh, transferred a senior journalist who writes a lot about the DAP out of Pulau Pinang.
Yet when pastors went missing it was The Star that played up the issue religiously, and little was said by the tabloid when one came back from Thailand conveniently after Songkran ended.
We are now made to wonder why is this MCA-owned tabloid pandering to the evangelists in the DAP.
Just two days before the headline was printed media editors were summoned by the KDN and were told to refrain from publishing offensive materials.
Two days later The Star decided to offend the Muslims and called it a mistake. How can it be a mistake if it has eleven prepress workflow before it gets published?
Coincidentally the GEIC fled the country on the day the offensive headline went to press. She is said to be in San Francisco now, avoiding the summon by KDN today.
Instead, a low level Malay has been chosen to face KDN.
Six years ago, The Star published a recipe for Ramadhan feast. It was a pork dish. The Star was summoned by KDN and it issued an apology much like the most recent one promising it would not happen again.
Back in 1987, The Star had its printing license revoked for fanning racial sentiments. It is now seen to do the same and getting the backing of Malay liberals to justify its tasteless articles.
It is about time the KDN slap it with a three-year ban.
Raveentharan a/l V Subramaniam, former Parti Keadilan Rakyat state assemblyman for Batu Uban in Pulau Pinang is in hot soup after the Inspector-General of Police instructed the Royal Malaysian Police for the former’s seditious post in hi Facebook account.
Raveentharan, a Georgetown-based lawyer who was dropped from the candidates’ list during the 13th General Elections quickly apologised to Muslims in Malaysia saying that he did not mean to offend Muslims and that his best friends are Muslims.
Raveentharan is not new to controversies. In 2009, two SMS messages were made viral, sent by an unknown alleging that he sodomised and physically abused his ex-wife. In 2013, he was dropped from PKR’s list of candidates for the 13th General Elections in favour of T Jayabalan.
Below are screen captures made from his Facebook account, courtesy of Dr Aznil Hisham:
Suddenly Raventharan is not so brave anymore. And as for his apology, I leave that to you and for the authorities to decide.
There is nothing wrong with wanting to be a moderate. Moderation is what is preached in Islam. Moderation is what seems to be eroding by the day not just in Islam, but in other religions and cuts across the racial board as well. And this applies to every single country there is on the face of this Earth. And to have a group of people advocating moderation is a more-than-welcome effort in this young-but-amnesiac country that seems to have lost all institutional memory of the events that had brought about the Federal Constitution of Malaysia.
Reading the The Star’s interview with Tan Sri Alwi Jantan (Torchbearers for founding fathers – Sunday, 4th September 2016) I cannot help but agree to some of his points, but at the same time feel as if there is some form of misguidance, or misinterpretation of the Federal Constitution, and a deliberate misleading on the respected Tan Sri’s part.
I agree that rather than focusing on petty issues such as whether or not the Langkawi statue is haram, the religious councils as well as JAKIM should focus more on the development of correct as well as balanced knowledge on Islamic subjects such as Tauhid, Fardhus Ain and Kifayah. This is important to counter the influence of deviationists especially that of the Da’esh. However, religious as well as racial extremism is not confined to Islam alone. In the name of pluralism as advocated by the G25, there should only be single-stream schools. Children who do not grow up together will grow up apart. We can never talk about unity and understanding if we do not understand each other. Preserving the mother-tongue can be done after formal classes are over and this can be done at the school itself, perhaps after lunch. So could the Islamic religious classes. In the latter category, this would ensure that correct teachings are being imparted to the children rather than by private religious schools whose curriculum are not being monitored effectively by the religious councils. Also that way working parents do not need to worry about the whereabouts of their children and can pick them up at school after work, or a similar arrangement could be made.
In a plural society such as ours, the need for our children to grow up together for the sake of unity is paramount. Sending children to separate schools based on mother tongue rather than a common national language is against the spirit of the Constitution. When the Constitution was being drafted for it to be in operation by Merdeka Day 1957, the Reid Commission adopted the Alliance’s (UMNO, MCA and MIC) proposal to establish Malay as the official language of the Federation. However, there were differences on how to go about with this. Ng Ek Teong, the MCA representative submitted that English should be allowed to be used for official purposes for a minimum of 10 years. MIC was in support of this. Both MCA and MIC also proposed for Mandarin and Tamil be allowed to be used in the legislatures for a minimum period of 10 years. UMNO however proposed that English be allowed to be used for a maximum period of ten years after independence. Ng Ek Tong told the Commission that this would only serve as a temporary measure(Colonial Office CO 889/6, Minutes of Alliance hearing before the Reid Commission, 27 September 1956, pp 290-294). Tunku Abdul Rahman however said:
“At the end of 10 years, the general trend will be that people will still demand for it and the people who propose it now are not sure that they would be there to guarantee it. It is bound to cause a lot of debate later on.”(Ibid.)
Even Lord William Reid himself was not in favour of the proposal by MCA and MIC saying that it would cause practical difficulties (Ibid/Making of the Malayan Constitution, Joseph M Fernando, pp 128-129). It was for this reason that the Tunku promoted the Rumi script for the Malay language at the expense of the Jawi script to enable the non-Malays to learn the national language rapidly (Tunku Abdul Rahman (1984), op. cit., pp. 112-114). This has been enshrined in Article 152 of the Federal Constitution as well as in the National Language Act, 1963/1967.
The reality of it now is that the migrant workers from Bangladesh, Pakistan and Myanmar are more able to grasp the Malay language than many of our own Identity Card-wielding citizens. Mind you, they also stood still at Dataran Merdeka while the NegaraKu was being played. Our own citizens refuse to stand up when the NegaraKu was being played in the cinemas, extinguishing the very torch of our founding fathers.
The Constitution is secular only up to a certain point. The Reid Commission, commissioned by both Her Majesty The Queen of England and the Malay Rulers had initially omitted a proposal by the Malay Rulers to have Islam as the religion of the Federation. Reid saw it fit that matters of religion be handled only by the Ruler of the respective States, and that the special position of the Malays be reviewed after 15 years.
When the report was published, the strongest objections came from the man revered by Malaysians now as the father of multiracialism – Dato Onn Jaafar, who as the leader of Parti Negara said that the Malays had been let down. PAS claimed that the Malay interests had been cast aside (von Vorys (1975), op. cit., p.132). Hence, the Tunku later submitted that Islam be made the religion of the Federation with two provisos added: first that it would not affect the position of the Rulers as head of religion in their respective States; second, the practice and propagation of other religions to the non-Malays in the Federation would be assured under the Constitution (UMNO/SUA 154/56, Minutes of Alliance ad-hoc political sub-committee meeting, 2 April 1957).
Sir Donald Charles MacGillivray personally felt that such a provision would be advantageous because the Yang DiPertuan Agong could at the same time become the head of the faith in the Settlements of Penang and Malacca (CO 1030/524 (10), MacGillivray to Secretary of State, 25 February 1957; See also CO 1030/524 (18), MacGillivray to Secretary of State, 21 March 1957).
Fast forward to the present, Article 3 of the Federal Constitution has clearly mentioned Islam as the religion of the Federation with the Rulers being the Head of religion in their respetive States, while the Yang DiPertuan Agong becomes the Head of religion in the States of Pulau Pinang, Melaka, Sabah and Sarawak, as well as in the Federal Territories of Kuala Lumpur, Labuan and Putrajaya. It is not an official religion but the religion of the Federation. The provisos added to safeguard the practice and propagation of other religions are now enshrined in Article 11 with limits to propagate given in Clause 4 of the said Article, to safeguard and honour the position of Islam as the religion of the Federation.
There is even a separation of jurisdiction when it comes to the position of Islam in the Federal Constitution. The Syariah Law comes under the purview of the respective Rulers, and the Attorney-General of Malaysia, under Article 145(3) does not have the jurisdiction over proceedings before a Syariah court, a native court of a court-martial. This separation of jurisdition is also present as provided by Article 121(1A) where both the High Court of Malaya and High Court of Sabah and Sarawak do not have any jurisdiction over Syariah matters. Therefore, the respected Tan Sri should be aware that, borrowing the words of Sir Stamford Raffles in a 1815 letter to his cousin mentioned how “Religion and laws are so united” in Muslim dominated areas that the introduction of Christian beliefs will bring about “much mischief, much bitterness of heart and contention”. (Seademon, A Case For God, 1 Jan 2013) .
Even Act 355, the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act, 1965 (last revised in 1988) states the following:
1. (1) This Act may be cited as the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction), 1965.
1. (2) This Act shall apply to all the States of Peninsular Malaysia.
2. The Syariah Courts duly constituted under any law in a State and invested with jurisdiction over persons professing the religion of Islam and in respect of any of the matters enumerated in List II of the State List of the Ninth Schedule to the Federal Constitution are hereby conferred jurisdiction in respect of offences against precepts of the religion of Islam by persons professing that religion which may be prescribed under any written law:
Provided that such jurisdiction shall not be exercised in respect of any offence punishable with imprisonment for a term exceeding three years or with any fine exceeding five thousand ringgit or with whipping exceeding six strokes or with any combination thereof.
The Act, clearly says that it first and foremost, applies to all States of the Peninsular Malaysia. It is not applicable to where the Yang DiPertuan Agong is the Head of religion ie. the Federal Territories, Sabah and Sarawak. Second, it applies only to Muslims and any matters in List II of the State List of the Ninth Schedule to the Federal Constitution. Third, it cannot propose any punishment that prescribes any jail term exceeding three years, or with any fine exceeding five thousand ringgit, or with whipping exceeding six strokes or with any combination thereof.
Therefore, there is no question of introducing stoning to death, amputation of limbs etc. Anything above those limitations will be referred to the Criminal Courts.
So, Tan Sri, care to explain how are secularism and pluralism being attacked with examples of provisos of the Federal Constitution or any laws made under it?
Finally, let me quote the interview given by the respected Tan Sri to The Star:
G25 has also expanded its scope to include good governance and tackling corruption. As not only the former head of the PSD but also former secretary-general in the Local Government and Federal Territory Ministry, Health Ministry and Agriculture Ministry, Alwi has focused on good governance, which he calls the precondition for a constitutional democracy: “Those in power must be made accountable for their actions and conduct.”
During his time, civil servants were able to do their jobs without fear or favour, he recalls. “The division of responsibilities between the politicians and civil servants was fairly clear cut.”
But over time good governance has been eroded at an alarming rate, he says.
“This shows the rot in Malaysia, but it is a rot which was started during Mahathir’s 22-year premiership, and by Mahathir himself!
Today, Mahathir is obsessed with the toppling of Najib as Prime Minister, but this is not because he wanted to stop the rot in Malaysia, to restore the independence and integrity of the judiciary and a just rule of law; to end the subversion of the independence and professionalism of national institutions whether the civil service, the police, the elections commission or anti-corruption agency; eradicate rampant corruption; restore ethics and honesty in public life; re-establish a good education system or restore Malaysia’s economic competitiveness.
Mahathir wants Najib out as the Prime Minister for Malaysia, not to stop the rot which was started by him during his premiership, but for an agenda personal to himself.
This is the rot of Hamlet in Malaysia.”
I’m surprised the good Tan Sri had made no mention whatsoever of this episode. And he was a civil servant by definition, under the tutelage of the Pribumi person himself and remained in public service until 16 April 1990, thirteen years before Mahathir steped down.
So, Tan Sri, it is good that you want to become the torchbearer of the founding fathers of this blessed nation. However, please ensure that you are on the right path first before you decide to light that torch and guide others.
I ran a poll on the sale of the TH TRX land on the 28th May 2015. Here is the result:
92.48% (2,951) said TH should not sell the land.
7.52% (240) said TH should sell the land immediately.
37% are from Selangor
32% are from Kuala Lumpur
5% are from Perak
3% are from Pahang
3% are from Johor
3% are from Outside Malaysia
2% are from Pulau Pinang
2% are from Putrajaya
2% are from Kedah
2% are from Melaka
2% are from Kelantan
2% are from Terengganu
2% are from Negeri Sembilan
2% are from Perlis
1% are from Labuan
38% are between 36-45 years old
33% are between 46-60 years old
26% are between 21-35 years old
2% are 61 and above
1% are below 20
Much have been said about sex in Islam lately, from both Muslims and non-Muslims alike. This came about when Yeo Bee Yin, the state assemblywoman for Damansara Utama championed a campaign on rape awareness with the tagline, “Without her consent, it is rape. No excuse.” This is seen by some as an attack on Islam where there is no such thing as marital rape. No, there is no such thing as a marital rape in Islam, but there are guidelines on the sexual relationship between husbands and wives. The Quran has more than 20 verses outlining the dos and don’ts between husbands and wives. While the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) has been quoted as saying that a wife has to submit to a husband’s sexual needs even while they are riding the back of a camel as mentioned by the Mufti of Perak, Islam recognizes the women’s need for love, affection and foreplay. Imam Ibn al-Qayyim reported in his famous “Tibbun Nabawi” that the Prophet (pbuh) forbade in engaging in sexual intercourse before foreplay (al-Tibb an-Nabawi 183, from Jabir ibn Abdullah).
The issue above has caught the attention of many up to the point that non-Muslims are ridiculing Muslims and Islamic practices on the social media. What drove Yeo Bee Yin, a Christian with known affiliation to the National Evangelical Christian Fellowship, to come up with such a campaign tagline is beyond me. A simpler “Protect Women From Rape“, or “Say No To Rape“, or “Women Expect Men To Protect Them From Rape” would have been more acceptable, instead of creating the perception that Muslims are barbarians whose main reason of existence is to be able to cum as many times as they can in a day. Perhaps, in her subtle way, Bee Yin was trying to undermine the sanctity of Islam as the Religion of the Federation as stipulated in the Federal Constitution of Malaysia. I will let you decide that on your own. Maybe Bee Yin et al should also highlight what else God had said about sexual intercourse and how barbaric a religion can be:
1. For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. (Remember women, you are your husband’s property)
2. Let your fountain be blessed, and rejoice in the wife of your youth, a lovely deer, a graceful doe. Let her breasts fill you at all times with delight; be intoxicated always in her love.
3. Do not deprive one another, except perhaps by agreement for a limited time, that you may devote yourselves to prayer; but then come together again, so that Satan may not tempt you because of your lack of self-control. (So, wives should not say no to sexual advances by the husbands).
4. The sexually immoral, men who practice homosexuality, enslavers, liars, perjurers, and whatever else is contrary to sound doctrine (if you follow this, no semen would have penetrated by 4cm).
5. If a man lies with a male as with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon them. (Death to gay men).
6. Now therefore, kill every male among the little ones, and kill every woman who has known man by lying with him. But all the young girls who have not known man by lying with him keep alive for yourselves. (Young girls? Is this Islamic? Oh, but Muhammad married a child!)
Now from which verses of the Quran did I pick those up?
In justifying his action, Lim Guan Eng says that the Administration of Religion of Islam (Penang) Enactment 2004 applies to Muslims only.
He said the state government had not passed any law to allow the enactment to apply on non-Muslims.
A list of 40 words, including Allah, Solat, Ulama, Soleh, Mufti, Iman, Surau and Nabi, were decreed as exclusive to Muslims by the Penang mufti and enforced in 2010 as provided under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Administration of Religion of Islam (Penang) Enactment 2004.
Firstly, Lim Guan Eng should know that the Enactment is not a fatwa. It is. A law that was passed by the Dewan Undangan Negeri of Pulau Pinang that consisted of both lawmakers from the then-government and then-opposition, Muslims and non-Muslims alike. Therefore, it is a state law, not a Muslim-specific law. This law is then used as a base for a fatwa that was gazetted in 2010.
Furthermore, the Head of Islam in Penang is the Yang DiPertuan Agong. Lim Guan Eng has no right to show his absolute rudeness to His Majesty by usurping His Majesty’s authority and powers. He is merely a servant of His Majesty and His Majesty’s rakyat, not the king himself.
I call upon the Rakyat to deplore this king-wannabe.
The PKR state rep for Kajang has resigned paving way for another by-election. The reason given was “to enable to strengthen Pakatan rakyat’s ability to service the constituents.”
I do not know who is dumb or who is dumber. The former Kajang rep for making that statement, or Pakatan Rakyat for nominating a self-confessed non-performer to contest the seat during the last general elections. Or maybe it is the people of Selangor themselves who love being duped time and time again. I am not saying that Barisan Nasional is all good, but imagine how much does a by-election cost. Serve for less than a year and you suddenly feel it would be better for someone else to replace you.
But if you ask me, this has been orchestrated by the those with real political power in Selangor.
There is a list of 25 or so items, words if you may, that cannot be used in non-Muslim publications. The only person in the state with the power to drop this list is none other than the Menteri Besar himself.
It took Khalid six days to issue a statement on the confiscation of the bibles, and then did nothing further, especially after the State Exco for Islamic Religious Affairs urged the people to abide by the decree issued by the Sultan of Selangor regarding the issue.
Enter Sivaji himself who asked for the return of the bibles. Two weeks later, he was named as Pakatan Rakyat’s candidate to contest the Kajang state assembly seat, possibly paving his way to become the MB. This could also be paving the way to allow changes in the state’s Syariah enactment and possibly allowing the 25 words including Allah to be used in non-Muslim publications.
Last year in Kajang, the Chinese votes were solid behind PKR, while the Malays were split to the core. It would be interesting, especially for Islam, to see how the Malays would vote in this by-election.