Friday, November 28, 2008

Muslim in Malaysia have no Religious Freedom..?

Well, that seems to be the position taken by a former judge...
PUTRAJAYA, Nov 19 (Bernama) -- The concept of religous freedom does not apply to Muslims in the country, a retired high court judge told an international seminar here.

Datuk Faiza Tamby Chik said, as far as enacted law was concerned, it was clear that it was not easy for one to abandon the practices of the faith.

Citing the case of Lina Joy's renunciation of Islam, Faiza said the high court in its decision ruled that a Malay under Article 160(2) of the Federal Constitution remained in the Islamic faith until his or her dying days.

"The said Malay cannot renounce his or her religion through a deed poll and seek a declaration by virtue of Article 11 of the Federal Constitution," he said when delivering a working paper entitled, 'Malay and Islam in Malaysian Constitution' at the two-day International Seminar on Comparative Laws (ISCOM 2008) which ended today.

Speakers from universities in Sydney, Syria, the Philippines participated at the seminar which was organised by Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia whose speakers also took part.

Faiza is a distinguished Fellow in Faculty of Syariah and Law from the Universiti Sains Islam Malaysia.

On the high court decision, he said the court also held that even if one was a non-Malay and embraced Islam and become a Muslim convert (mualaf) and later decided to leave the Islamic faith, he or she was still required to report and see the relevant State Islamic Authority which would decide on the renunciation of Islam.

He said non-Muslims in the country had wide religious freedom and that the primary limitation on non-Muslims applied to those whose beliefs and religious practices included the propagation of their faith.

However, Faiza said state law may prevent attempts of non-Muslims to proselyte Muslims.

He added that Article 3 of the Federal Constitution provided a balancing clause that other religions might practice in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.
-- BERNAMA - 19/11/2008, Religious Freedom Does Not Apply To Muslims Here, Says Retired Judge

1 comment:

Samuel Goh Kim Eng said...


Is there any genuine freedom
If one is only free to remain
In the religion of one's birth
As decreed by fellow men on earth?

(C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng - 281108
Fri. 28th Nov. 2008.