KUALA LUMPUR: Women and Family Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil is pleasantly surprised by the decision of the Islamic Development Department (Jakim) on the monogamy campaign launched by a coalition of women groups.
She said she was really happy that Jakim had been open in listening to the group's explanation on the campaign and had reacted positively.
I commend Jakim for taking a positive stance on the issue, said Shahrizat, who admitted that it was a sensitive issue that had to be dealt with carefully.
It is a breakthrough in many ways for everyone concerned, she said at her office yesterday after launching Handypop MalaysiaPopulation and Development Information booklet and mini interactive compact disc produced by the National Population and Family Development Board.
On Monday, Jakim director-general Datuk Shahir Abdullah said there was no need for the group's One Husband One Wife campaign to be called off as the department was satisfied that it was not meant to question or undermine Islam nor the Syariah law.
Shahir, who held a meeting with the group on the matter, said the objective of the campaign was for a happier state of family affairs but what perhaps needed to be done was to change the emphasis of the campaign.
He also said the tagline had caused many to conclude that it was anti-polygamy and the controversy that had arisen was due to misinformation and unbalanced reporting.
She added that she was happy that Jakim was willing to discuss the issue further with the group and that the group would be allowed to give the women's perspective on the issue at the Mufti meeting on April 8.
As for the ministry, she said, it would continue to push for the unification of the syariah laws. It will also monitor the implementation of the syariah laws and problems faced by women including delayed cases, maintenance (after a divorce) and problems of custody.