Publication, distribution of material that misleads Muslims not allowed in Johor, says Sultan Ibrahim

  • Nation
  • Wednesday, 24 May 2023

JOHOR BARU: The publication, printing, broadcasting and distribution of any material that misleads the people – especially Muslims – will not be allowed in Johor, says Sultan Ibrahim Ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar.

His Majesty added that this was in line with the position of Islam in the state constitution.

"In Johor, the fatwa published on June 4, 2009, clearly states that the use of the word 'Allah' by non-Muslims is not required, not permitted and prohibited," said Sultan Ibrahim.

His Majesty added that Johor also has the 1991 Non-Islamic Religious Development Control and Restrictions Enactment.

"This prohibits the use of words that are exclusively for Muslims and cannot be used by non-Muslims except in circumstances or practices permitted by legislation such as in the Johor state anthem," said Sultan Ibrahim in a statement here on Wednesday (May 24).

His Majesty said following the Federal Government's decision to withdraw the appeal against a court decision over the use of the word "Allah" in Christian publications, Putrajaya should carefully refine and handle as well as possible the implications of its decision because it is closely related to issues within the boundaries of Islam and sentiments of Muslims in this country.

"Regulations, actions, enforcement and coordination about the word of God must be detailed without affecting state fatwa and enactments so that the harmony and unity of our society will continue to be preserved.

"I remain of the opinion that the publication, printing, broadcasting and distribution of any material that misleads the people, especially Muslims, will not be allowed in the state in line with the position of Islam in the Undang Undang Tubuh Negeri Johor 1895," said Sultan Ibrahim.

On May 23, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the proposal to improve the policies and regulations relating to the use of the word "Allah" by non-Muslims would be tabled at the meeting of the Conference of Rulers in July.

The Prime Minister said he had referred the matter to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and the King advised him that all decisions must be in line with the decision made by the Conference of Rulers.

He said the government would also refer to the National Council for Islamic Religious Affairs (MKI) chaired by Selangor's Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah.

"We will refer first to the MKI chaired by the Selangor Sultan to seek their advice to improve the policies so that a final decision can be made, which is to prohibit its use in the peninsula but allowed, with certain conditions, in Sabah and Sarawak.

On May 15, the Home Ministry and the Federal Government withdrew the appeal against the Kuala Lumpur High Court decision which ruled that non-Muslims can use the word "Allah" and three other Arabic words in the publication of their religious materials for learning purposes.

Anwar said the decision to withdraw the appeal was part of the efforts to improve all the related policies and regulations.

"It was done after taking into account the Attorney General's views. If not, there will be appeal after appeal due to loopholes.

"That's why we want to put an end to it by amending all policies to make it clearer so that no such cases can be taken to court. For me, it is better this way," he added.

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