Malaysia

Price hike and ‘Allah’ issues have reached critical level, says PAS

Malaysians have been hit by higher prices for goods and services. Now, PAS politicians want the government to sit down with the opposition and tackle the issue. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari, January 6, 2014.Malaysians have been hit by higher prices for goods and services. Now, PAS politicians want the government to sit down with the opposition and tackle the issue. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Nazir Sufari, January 6, 2014.The issues of price hike and use of the word “Allah” have reached a "critical" level which demand an immediate solution, said PAS lawmakers.

The Islamist party chief researcher and central working committee member Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said it was time for the Barisan Nasional government and Pakatan Rakyat to sit down and find a solution to tackle both issues.

"Let me be clear, I am not talking about a unity government but a bipartisan reconciliation where we can come up with steps to handle the crisis. This would involve structural reforms," said Dzulkefly at the party headquarters in Kuala Lumpur today.

Party information chief Datuk Mahfuz Omar said the National Fatwa Council should also make a stand on the “Allah” issue to resolve the confusion created by Putrajaya.

"Putrajaya said 'Allah' can be used in Sabah and Sarawak. Here in Selangor, it cannot be used. Then we have minister giving another statement and the prime minister saying something else.

"The Fatwa Council should make their stand on this," said Mahfuz.

 "Are there two Qurans? Is Putrajaya using another Quran while Selangor is referring to another? As far as I know there is only one. Then we have ministers giving different statements, the minister for religion one and the prime minister another.”

Mahfuz agreed with Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's rebuking three DAP assemblymen – Yeo Bee Yin (Damansara), Rajiv Rishyakaran (Bukit Gasing) and Lau Weng San (Kampung Tunku) – who had proposed amending the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation among Muslims) Enactment 1988.

“The statement made by the trio is hasty just like the raid conducted by the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais)," he said.

Passed by the then Barisan Nasional state government, the enactment prohibits non-Muslims in Selangor from using 35 Arabic words and phrases in their faith, including “Allah”, “Nabi” (prophet), “Injil” (gospel) and “Insya’Allah” (God willing).

Anwar yesterday said there was no need for such hasty action as there were proper channels within the state government and Pakatan Rakyat for them to put forth their views.

Last Thursday, Jais raided the Bible Society of Malaysia's office in Damansara Kim and seized more than 300 copies of the Alkitab and Bup Kudus.

The raid is widely seen as being triggered by Catholic weekly Herald editor Rev Father Lawrence Andrew’s remarks that churches in Selangor would continue to use “Allah” in their Bahasa Malaysia services following a warning from Jais to stop.

Dzulkefly also said PAS' stand remained the same as in January last year.

The PAS Syura Council had decided that non-Muslims should prevent the use of the word “Allah” in translations of their religious texts, but were free to use it orally.

The party’s religious council also said that the Arabic word cannot be translated into or translated from other languages.

The council explained that the word “Allah” is a specific and holy word used to refer to God by Muslims. – January 6, 2014.

Comments