IPOH: Perak Ruler Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah has ordered for an investigation into allegations that political parties organised programmes in a few mosques and surau in the state.
In a statement issued by the Sultan's office, the Comptroller of the Royal Household (Datuk Pengelola Bijaya Diraja) Kol (R) Datuk Abd Rahim Mohamad Nor said the programmes, which included an unauthorised ceramah, were organised by political parties between May 21 and 24.
"The Sultan has instructed the Perak Islamic Religious Department (JAIPK) director to conduct a thorough investigation on the programmes.
"During the investigation, he also agreed to a suggestion by the JAIPK director to suspend the post of the mosque and surau committee chairman, whose responsibilities will be taken over by the district religious administrative officer," said Abd Rahim on Sunday (May 26).
The programmes were said to have been held at Masjid al-Khairiah located in Kampung Banjar Hilir, Teluk Intan; Surau Al-Ittihad Kampung Temiang in Ipoh and Surau Diri Jumaat Al-Taufiqiah in Taman Klebang Jaya, Chemor.
Abd Rahim said Sultan Nazrin had received many complaints about the programmes held there.
"The Sultan on Saturday (May 25) summoned the state police chief, JAIPK director and the state Islamic Religious and Malay Customs Council (MAIAMP) secretary to find out if the complaints have basis.
"He has also met with state political parties' leaders and stressed that no programmes are to be held by any political party at mosques or surau," he said, adding that the places of worship are where devotees unite.
"The Sultan said it was an unhealthy development, and competing activities between parties from the ruling government and the Opposition could desecrate the sanctity of the mosques and surau," said Abd Rahim.
He added that if these political programmes are held rampantly in mosques and surau, the Sultan was worried that there would be an association with the political party, thus causing members from opposing political parties to stay away.
Abd Rahim said the Sultan also reminded all political party leaders to be responsible and give their commitment to preserve the sanctity of the houses of worship.
"They have all agreed to remind their respective party members not to hold programmes under the party's name at mosques or surau or even to hang banners in the compound," he said.
"Political parties are reminded not to invite speakers to give religious talks without getting a permit from MAIAMP," he added.