Ambiga: If pastor’s actions illegal, take him to court

Source: FMT News

Pastor Raymond Koh's wife, Susanna Liew, expresses sadness and disappointment that her husband is now being investigated. Pic from FMT News.

Pastor Raymond Koh’s wife, Susanna Liew, expresses sadness and disappointment that her husband is now being investigated. Pic from FMT News.

KUALA LUMPUR: No matter what missing Pastor Raymond Koh and three others like him did, they don’t deserve to be taken away from their families with no explanation provided.

“Are they armed terrorists? No. They are ordinary people who helped, and did extraordinary work for the poor and the needy,” said Ambiga Sreenevasan, who is president of the national human rights society, Hakam.

“Of course there are a lot of allegations (surrounding their disappearance). If you say they have done anything wrong, charge them.

“If anyone does anything illegal, they must be charged and brought to justice, no matter how much you don’t like what they do,” she added.

Ambiga was speaking at a gathering in Dataran Merdeka here last night. The gathering titled “Di Mana Mereka?” (Where are they?) was organised by Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) in solidarity with the families of the missing four. Read more

Five-star reviews flood ‘Hotline Jais’ app after claim it will be removed

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The Application has 4,803 five-star and 60 one-star user reviews at the time of writing. Pic from the MMO.

The Application has 4,803 five-star and 60 one-star user reviews at the time of writing. Pic from the MMO.

KUALA LUMPUR, March 15 — Over 4,000 five-star reviews were posted for the “Hotline Jais” mobile app after an online message alleged Google will remove it today over complaints of privacy violations.

The app by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais), which enables the public to report suspected Shariah offences,

, giving it an average rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars.

“Very good app. It will help prevent immorality [sic] activities in the society. Easier for mosleem to get information about JAIS and other Islamic department activities. Good app to deal with.. keep it up. ‘Kafir sila jgn sibuk ya’.. mind ur own bussiness,” a user called Keroll Baree posted Monday. Read more

Khalid Samad due to be sentenced for teaching Islam without a permit

Source: The Star Online

Pic from the Star Online.

Pic from the Star Online.

PETALING JAYA: Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad is set to be sentenced Thursday at the Klang Syariah Court over a charge of teaching Islam without a permit.

The Parti Amanah Negara lawmaker may even lose his Parliamentary seat, depending on the severity of the sentence.

Khalid was charged in April 2012 by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) for teaching Islam without first obtaining the necessary credentials when speaking at a surau in Klang.

“In 2011, I went to Gaza, Palestine. When I came back, there was this surau which invited to me to give a speech on my trip. So I went and I was therefore charged with teaching Islam without a permit,” he said. Read more

A peep into moral policing — Dr. Mustafa K. Anuar

Source: The Malay Mail Online

By Dr. Mustafa K. Anuar

Dr. Mustafa K Anuar is a fellow at Penang Institute. Pic taken from the Malay Mail Online

Dr. Mustafa K Anuar is a fellow at Penang Institute. Pic taken from the Malay Mail Online

OCT 12 — In an apparent frenzy to burnish Malaysia’s Islamic credentials, the Jabatan Agama Islam Selangor (JAIS) has recently resorted to modern communications technology to encourage Muslims to help police the morals of the Muslim community.

A mobile app – called “Hotline Jais” – that is available on Android devices enables members of the public to report suspected Shariah-related crimes, such as khalwat (close proximity) and “deviant Islamic teachings”, at a faster rate.

In other words, the kind of reporting that is supposedly driven by the spirit of amar makruf nahi mungkar (urging on what is good, and rejecting evil).

Such an innovation also means that JAIS is relying on vigilantes to help monitor – and catch – potential offenders of Shariah with members of the general public. Therein lies the rub. Read more

Only the guilty will fear vice hotline, Jais chief says

Source: The Malay Mail Online

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 11 — Only Muslims who have committed vice have reservations against the Selangor religious authorities’ new smartphone application, the state’s Islamic Department (Jais) director Datuk Haris Kasim said.

He told news portal Free Malaysia Today(FMT) that the app, also known as “Hotline Jais” would help curb vice activities before they happened, adding that prevention was better than treating crimes after they took place.

If he or she had done no wrong, what is there to be afraid of?

“What is there to be afraid of if you are not involved in khalwat,” Haris was quoted saying, referring to the Muslim offence of close proximity with someone of the opposite gender.

“What is there to be worried about with this application?” he asked.

According to the news report, Haris was responding to criticism that the app would encourage Muslims to spy on each other, an action frown upon in Islam. Read more

Ezra Zaid to stand Shariah trial after failing to nullify Selangor law on un-Islamic books charge

Source: The Malay Mail Online

ZI Publications Sdn Bhd director Ezra Zaid, Datuk Zaid Ibrahim and lawyer Pavendeep Singh are seen at the Federal Court, Putrajaya, September 28, 2015. — Picture by Saw Siow Feng

PUTRAJAYA, Sept 28 — Publisher Mohd Ezra Mohd Zaid will have to face trial in the Shariah Court after failing to persuade the country’s highest court to nullify a Selangor law that makes it an offence for Muslims to publish books the state religious authority deems un-Islamic.

Earlier today, the Federal Court dismissed Ezra and his publishing firm ZI Publications Sdn Bhd’s bid to have Section 16 of the Syariah Criminal Offences (Selangor) Enactment 1995 declared invalid, with the country’s supreme court ruling that the Selangor state assembly had acted within its powers under the Federal Constitution when making the law.

In the unanimous decision, a five-judge panel in the Federal Court noted that the Federal Constitution allows states to make laws on offences against the precepts of Islam and showed the intention of the Constitution’s framers to allow Muslims here to also be governed by Islamic personal law.

“In conclusion, we would like to highlight that a Muslim in Malaysia is not only subject to laws enacted by Parliament, but also state laws of religious nature enacted by legislature of a state,” the Federal Court panel chaired by Court of Appeal president Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif said in a 16-page judgement. Read more