Don’t ban books — Zaid Ibrahim
MAY 24 — As you know, the book “Allah, Liberty and Love” by Irshad Manji has been banned by Jakim. The reason given is that the book contains ideas of liberalism in Islam. This, according to them, is haram.
I strongly condemn such high-handed action by this government department.
Firstly, under the law only the home minister has power to order such a ban.
I don’t believe he has done that. I urge the home minister not to follow Jakim on this issue for many reasons.
Firstly, the book can be purchased online, so the ban will not be effective to contain liberal ideas.
Also, it does not endanger national security as the book has been in the market for more than a year, and Malaysia peace and stability is not threatened.
The plan to make Malaysia a modern and moderate country will be scuttled by the ban.
Nowadays only North Korea Iran and few more failed states ban books. It’s not the done thing. Malaysia’s international reputation will go down and damage all the effort to attract talents back home.
Smart and talented people require a free and liberal environment to work and live. Anyway if liberal ideas are haram, what’s going to happen to party Kita?
They have to ban us too because our central philosophy is liberalism and democracy.
* Datuk Zaid Ibrahim is president of Parti Kita. His latest book “Ampun Tuanku” is now available.
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.