Sensitive issue: A Catholic priest’s remark that churches in Selangor would continue to use the word ‘Allah’ in reference to God during mass has caused an uproar among Muslims groups.
SHAH ALAM: Everyone should keep calm and act rationally over sensitive issues. That’s the advice given by Selangor police chief Senior Deputy Comm Datuk Mohd Shukri Dahlan.
He said this in response to an expected protest over a Catholic priest’s remark that churches in Selangor would continue using the word “Allah” in reference to God during mass.
He said police personnel would be stationed at churches on Sunday to ensure that no untoward incidents take place.
“This is normal procedure to make sure nothing happens,” he said during a press conference at the Shah Alam police headquarters yesterday.
He, however, declined to name the churches where police personnel would be posted.
SDC Mohd Shukri also urged those planning to take other actions, including sending memorandums to churches, to rethink their plans.
He said there were better ways than to march in large groups to hand over memorandums.
“Maybe doing it in a large group is not their best option and I urge them to rethink it,” he said.
He said if any group was looking to hold illegal rallies, action would be taken under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 but there would be no need to do so if they heeded police orders to disperse.
A news portal quoted Father Lawrence Andrew, editor of the Catholic weekly, The Herald, as saying last week that Catholic churches in the state would continue using the word “Allah”.
His statement caused furore among some Muslims, including a group called the Klang Muslims Solidarity Secretariat, which said it would hold a demonstration at the church unless he retracted his statement and issued a public apology.
Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah of Selangor had decreed on Dec 14 that all citizens in Selangor must abide by the prohibition on the use of the word “Allah” by non-Muslims as provided for under the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation Among Muslims) Enactment 1988.
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