ALOR SETAR: The Sultan of Kedah Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu'adzam Shah said Sunday that the word "Allah" is exclusive to Muslims.
In his birthday speech, read by Kedah Council of Regency chairman Tan Sri Tunku Annuar Sultan Badlishah, he said non-Muslims must respect this right and were banned from using the word.
He said any confusion or controversy, in regards to the word, could be avoided if the court’s judgement is respected.
On Oct 14, the Court of Appeal banned the Catholic Church from using the word "Allah" in the Bahasa Malaysia section of its weekly newspaper, The Herald.
In Selangor, the Sultan decreed that the word is exclusively for Muslims, affirming the law already contained within the Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation Amongst Muslims) Enactment 1988 of Selangor.
Section 9 of the Selangor Enactment, prohibits any non-Muslim to use in writing or speech any of 25 words or any of their derivatives and variations, as stated in Part 1 of the Schedule, pertaining to a non-Islamic religion.
The 25 words are Allah, Firman Allah, Ulama, Hadith, Ibadah, Kaabah, Kadi, Ilahi, Wahyu, Mubaligh, Syariah, Qiblat, Haj, Mufti, Rasul, Iman, Dakwah, Injil, Salat, Khalifah, Wali, Fatwa, Imam, Nabi and Sheikh.
Similar enactments with almost identical provisions exist in 10 states.
The Sultan of Kedah, Tuanku Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah, is the 14th Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia.