The Ministry of Home Affairs (KDN) will present the results of engagements with stakeholders regarding the issue of regulating publications containing the word ‘Allah’ to the Council of Rulers at the end of this month, says Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail.
He said the input and views obtained from the five engagement sessions would shape the new administrative directive on the use of the word Allah, and it needed to be presented to the Council of Rulers as the highest religious authority in the country.
"We have to present it there (Council of Rulers) and any input there, whether additional views and so on, we will bring it back to KDN to examine the matter which will be a guide for us to draft a new administrative directive," he told the media after attending the ministry’s engagement session with religious harmony management bodies here, today.
Also present were National Unity Minister Datuk Aaron Ago Dagang and Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Dr Mohd Na'im Mokhtar.
According to Saifuddin, the five engagement sessions involved Islamic scholars and teachers; academicians, sociologists and public safety experts; activists in the field of civil and syariah law; Malaysian syariah management bodies; and the religious harmony management bodies.
He said the engagement sessions were held following the High Court's decision on March 10, 2021, which allowed a judicial review application by a Christian woman, Jill Ireland, who sought a declaration of her Constitutional right regarding the use of the word ‘Allah’ in publications related to her religion.
"The agenda (involvement) is to help create a new administrative directive following the High Court's decision in the Jill Ireland case, which rendered the previous administrative directive no longer applicable," he said.
According to Saifuddin Nasution, in today's engagement session, the participants voiced that the government should work to resolve the issue related to the use of the word Allah 'once and for all' to prevent any elements causing unease or discomfort among the multi-religious community in Malaysia.
On June 5, Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah expressed deep concerns over the issue of the use of the word Allah which he feared would become a prolonged polemic and could affect national unity and the well-being of the country if not resolved immediately.
Al-Sultan Abdullah decreed that the government should harmonise the situation and at the same time, place the use of the word Allah in the right context by taking into account the national security, the benefit of the ummah as well as the position of His Majesty and other Malay Rulers as heads of the Islam in the country.
Source: BERNAMA News Agency