Justice is seen to be done : The case of Rosli Dahlan


November 24, 2014

Justice is seen to be done: The Case of Rosli Dahlan

by Din  Merican

‎My young friend Rosli Dahlan has been in the news a lot lately. He defends cases which most Muslim lawyers won’t want to even touch with a 10 foot pole. He was the Borders lawyer who successfully declared that s.13 of the FT Syariah Criminal Offences Act was ultra vires the Federal Constitution.

Then Rosli got embroiled in the Kassim Ahmad case and made a forceful argument exposing that JAWI acted illegally in arresting Kassim in Kedah and abducting him to KL.‎

What was more alarming to most Muslims was that he exposed that the Syariah Court is just an inferior court and even inferior to the magistrates court! But unknown to many, Rosli faces his personal tribulations alone.

Today, his own case came before the Court of Appeal. Some of you may recall that Rosli had sued the AG‎ Tan Sri Gani Patail, MACC Chief commissioner Tan Sri Abu Kassim, former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan and various officers of the MACC and AG Chambers including Dato Nordin Hassan and Dato Razak Musa (of Teoh Beng Hock fame). Rosli had faced many obstacles when the AG filed all kinds of application to prevent the case from coming to trial.

Readers will remember that A-G Gani Patail claimed that he had absolute immunity to do what he wants including fixing innocent citizens like Rosli. In that case, the High Court Judge Wazeer Alam Mydin Meera ruled that ” the claim of absolute immunity is anathema to modern notions of accountability”. A-G Gani was not happy and appealed to the Court of‎ Appeal. So, today was the A-G’s appeal.

before being made a judge, said he agreed that deliberate abuse of power by those holding a public office was misfeasance in public office.

As if it was not enough that Rosli had to face 3 Tan Sris, ‎A-G Gani Patail then engaged senior counsel Tan Sri Cecil Abraham to act for him. Many will recall that Tan Sri Cecil Abraham is implicated in the PI Bala case. That makes 4 Tan Sris against Rosli.

RD vs 4 Tan Sris

RD vs 4 Tan Sris

It seems that Tan Sri Cecil Abraham filed a last minute Written Submissions only yesterday at 3.45pm to throw Rosli’s counsel off guard. The appeal came on this morning.

‎In an apparent show of impartiality, Judges Dato Alizatul and Dato Nalini recused themselves when it was pointed out that Justice Alizatul had dismissed Rosli’s Judicial Review Leave application which challenged the very MACC notice for which he was charged and which the Trial Judge later held to be void notices.

At the same time, Judge Nalini recused herself after saying this is a high profile case involving A-G Gani Patail and she had sat in the panel that dismissed NST’s appeal when the High Court Judge Siti Khadijah Badjenid found NST and MACC liable for defamation and for breaching s.21(4) MACCA and ordered damages of RM300k to be paid by NST and MACC to Rosli.

I feel sorry for Rosli that he had to go through all these obstacles just to see his day in court to redeem himself. The incident happened in 2007. Today is 2014. It’s been 7 years and yet the case is not even anywhere near a trial date because A-G Gani Patail just does not want to face Rosli in court. That is what guilty people do, they do not want to face their Day of Judgement.

I also feel sorry for Rosli because his case is being treated like a joke when the Court of Appeal has now fixed the next hearing date on 1st April 2015 which is April Fool’s Day.

I say to Rosli- don’t be daunted.‎ God will protect you and will give you the last laugh. That’s how it has been for the last few cases where Rosli has won all the cases and the AG has been soundly beaten like in the Judgement by Judge Wazeer Alam. To the Justices‎ in our courts, I say to you – give the man the justice he deserves and don’t throw technical obstacles to protect these rogues in government. The higher titled they are, the harder you must come down on them. Let Justice be seen to be done!

Read this and don’t forget to help defend freedom:-

http://dinmerican.wordpress.com/2014/10/16/fund-for-kassim-ahmad-and-other-persecuted-activists/

Finger on the UMNO Pulse


November 17, 2014

COMMENT by Din Merican : Reading Jocelyn’s article allows me the opportunityNajib_Obama to add my observations on the coming UMNO General Assembly. I will try to speculate a little about Najib’s Amanat Presiden.

True, as Jocelyn says, Najib’s position in UMNO is secure. Not even the former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir and his loyalists in UMNO can unseat him at this point in time. Najib has done well to keep UMNO members under control, although that has come with a high price tag.

The fact that his popularity among Malaysians is at an all time low does not affect his hold on power in UMNO and the country. That makes him a smart politician aided by a group of loyalists, anyone of whom can succeed him when the time comes. Names like Hishamuddin and Zahid Hamidi have been mentioned as potential successors, if the incumbent Deputy President and Deputy Prime Minister decides to retire.

Coming to his Amanat Presiden 2014, I think he will be tough and uncompromising in his defence of Malay special rights and Islam.  He must as UMNO cannot deviate from its raison d’etre. But let us hope he will not overlook that he is also the Prime Minister for all Malaysians and must, therefore, tone down his rhetoric on Malay rights and UMNO’s defence of Islam.

His message should be a call for unity under a more enlightened and inclusive UMNO leadership. Neither the Malays nor Islam is under threat.There will, of course, be some goodies in store of UMNO members. More contracts and handouts, among other things.

With regard to the economy, he will likely crow about his achievements since his last speech before the UMNO General Assembly. A forecast real GDP growth of 5%+ is not something to be easily dismissed, given the less than optimistic outlook for the global economy, especially China and Europe and to some extent the United States.

Our growth will be domestic consumption driven, led by public expenditure. Najib will not talk about our mounting national debt and 1MDB borrowings. At the assembly, he cannot be a deliverer of bad news. He must rally the UMNO troops and sound upbeat about his economic policies which will remain Malay-bumiputra centric. After all, the UMNO general assembly is also fiesta time. And Najib must play to the gallery.

najib_razak_xi_jinpingOn foreign policy, he will have plenty to say. He has very good reasons to go to town on his achievements. Malaysia enjoys good relations with the United States, China and Europe. He is seen as a moderate and progressive Muslim leader. In ASEAN, he is well regarded. Our country will become a non-Permanent Member of the United Nations Security Council in 2015.

In addition to that, Malaysia will assume the ASEAN Chair when it takes over from Myanmar next year. Both these roles give our country a very high profile in international affairs. Even his detractors will concede that Najib has done a good job on foreign policy.

Let us hope his domestic political plays and statements will not affect Malaysia’s image abroad. His speech will be listened to, analysed, and discussed at home and abroad. He has grown to be a regional leader with strong foreign policy credentials and must remain so.

Finger on the UMNO pulse

by Jocelyn Tan@www.the star.com.my (11-16-14)

The UMNO general assembly next week will have to take note of the growing restlessness among party members about UMNO’s direction and the way it is dealing with issues close to their heart.

IT has been quite a turnaround for Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein. Athishamuddin-hussein around this time last year, the Defence Minister was lying on a hospital bed, recovering from “chest pains”, that euphemism that public figures use when they get a heart attack.The year 2013 had not been good for him. He had come under severe criticism for his handling of the Sabah incursions, his image was down and there was even speculation that he would be removed from his Defence portfolio.

The effect of all that caused him to come in last among the three UMNO Vice-Presidents and he was almost beaten by newcomer and Kedah Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir.He had hit a low point in his career. But he became a grandfather shortly after that. His grandson is now a cute and chubby toddler while the new grandfather is looking fit and healthy. Hishammuddin smells better these days because he has stopped smoking, he eats fruit and biscuit for lunch and he works out.

A year is a long, long time in politics and the sun is shining again for Hishammuddin.  “His image has lifted following his role in two tragic disasters involving our national airline. He is probably one of our best known leaders overseas,” said publisher Juhaidi Yean Abdullah.

His mother’s death a few months ago was another rite de passage and that hehe-haha boyish style he used to be known for has disappeared, replaced by a more serious demeanour.  He has put a lot of effort into his role as chairman for the UMNO resolutions committee. He wants to bring greater meaning and result to the hundreds of resolutions that come in from UMNO branches and divisions every year ahead of the UMNO general assembly.

His committee has received a total of 755 resolutions from 191 UMNO divisions all over the country. These resolutions range from localised matters like calls for better roads to weighty stuff like defending Islam.

In previous years, the relevant resolutions were selected for debate at the assembly while the rest were usually acknowledged with a simple reply. This year, Hishammuddin has sifted through the resolutions and brought them before the relevant ministries for attention and action. His argument is that these resolutions reflect the needs, requests and aspirations of the party grassroots and must be acted upon. That was what the round-table meeting involving ministry officials on Wednesday was about.

“He is looking at the scenario beyond the general assembly. He wants the UMNO folk down there to know that issues which are of concern to them are being taken seriously by the party leadership. Taking action on views from the grassroots is a way of empowering them,” said Pasir Salak Youth chief Dr Faizal Tajuddin.

The man who had struggled to retain his Vice-President post is on a comeback and comparisons are being made with top Vice-President and Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

The charismatic Dr Ahmad Zahid was the man of the moment a year ago, celebrated as much for his God-given people skills as for his tough stance on organised crime. The moment has passed, and his profile has slipped somewhat. But it is to his credit that gangland violence has also gone down and several states have reported lower crime rates.

Last year’s UMNO assembly had been a sort of mixed feelings type of gathering. The rank and file were euphoric that they had successfully conducted a landmark party election without too many boo-boos. There was a celebratory mood as they ushered in the new batch of leaders.

Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin retained their posts uncontested, a sign of the party’s stability despite a bruising general election.  They could also see the second echelon taking shape in the form of Vice-Presidents Ahmad Zahid, Hishammuddin and Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal.

KJ2In particular, Khairy Jamaluddin’s spectacular second-term win as UMNO Youth chief means that he is the one to watch in the years ahead. Khairy has brought the wow-factor to his position as Youth and Sports Minister, and he is one of the most watched UMNO politicians among those outside of UMNO.

His opinions on issues have shown that he is a cut above the rest and, more recently, many thought that he handled the doping issue involving Malaysia’s No. 1 badminton star with great maturity.

UMNO is still struggling between the old and the new. It wants to hold on to its traditional core values as a Malay nationalist party but it is also under immense pressure to adapt to the changing political landscape.

At the same time, there was the painful fact that UMNO is no longer the political powerhouse that it used to be and they were still hurting over what they saw as the “Chinese betrayal”. The hurt is still there and they are uncertain about what the future holds for UMNO.

The general expectation is that issues like the Sedition Act, vernacular schools and the attacks against Islam and the Malay rulers will dominate the debates.  “Warning shots” have been fired in the run-up to the assembly, with some politicians claiming that Chinese schools are creating “two nations in one country” while another politician urged that all Malay-majority seats should be contested by UMNO.

The euphoria of last year has dissipated. In its place is a restlessness for measures that can prepare the party to face the next big battle.

There is the sense that party members are impatient for answers and solutions. They are tired of excuses and inaction, they are not going to be satisfied with sweet talk and feel-good stories. They want the leaders to get tough and address issues in a concrete way.

In that sense, the debates should not be over-controlled. There was one year prior to the general election when the debate guidelines were so strict that everyone sounded like robots reading from the same script.

Frank views and reasonable criticism should be welcomed to help the leadership keep the finger on the pulse and also for delegates to let off steam.

The party has not moved forward very much since the last general election. The inability on the part of Barisan Nasional to present itself as the alternative in Selangor even as Pakatan Rakyat was fighting like crazy over the Menteri Besar post was testimony to that.

UMNO members were also incredulous that in Terengganu, a defiant Menteri Besar who was not ready to go, had arm-twisted the party and almost brought down the state government. It was so old politics.

The bright point was the UMNO win in the Pengkalan Kubor by-election. That was a real victory – a much bigger winning majority despite a lower voter turnout. The political fatigue seen everywhere is not only because of too much politicking over everything but also because people are disillusioned that the promise of new politics has not materialised.

“The PM’s political transformation is in danger of becoming a mere slogan. UMNO leaders need to put more beef into the transformation agenda or else it will become like Islam Hadhari. No one talks about that anymore,” said political analyst Dr Azmi Omar.

UMNO people are still adjusting to Najib’s political style. One of their grouses is that he is “too quiet”. They say it is important that he makes known the government’s stand and opinion on an issue so that UMNO politicians down the line know how to respond on their own part. It is also a form of taking the lead and shaping public opinion on issues.

Shortly after Najib took over as Prime Minister, Pakatan leadersMahathir Mohamad claimed that he wanted to bring back what they called “Maha­thirism”, whatever that meant. They insisted that Najib’s cordial relations with Dr Mahathir meant he was taking orders from the former Premier.

It was an idiotic story, yet so many people swallowed it. The fact that Dr Mahathir has withdrawn his support for Najib for not doing what the elder man thinks is the right thing, says it all. Ties between the two men are rather choppy at the moment. Dr Mahathir has openly criticised Najib but he still loves UMNO and wants the party to survive and recover its former glory.

It has been a challenging year for Najib who is now into his fifth year as UMNO president and Prime Minister. But despite everything, said Juhaidi, Najib’s position in Umno is solid, more so than most UMNO presidents in their fifth year on the job.

“Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi was already shaky in his first term while Dr Mahathir had fallen out bigtime with his deputy Tun Musa Hitam. Tun Hussein Onn lasted only a term because of heart problems while his predecessor Tun Abdul Razak Hussein’s health problems took his life in his sixth-year in office,” said Juhaidi.

Only Tunku Abdul Rahman could declare that he was the “happiest prime minister in the world” but the happiness did not last. Najib, said Juhaidi, has won the general election and the UMNO election. “Internally, I don’t see any challengers to his leadership. The UMNO  general assembly will not be like what happened at the PAS muktamar where the guns were pointed inwards. The UMNO guns will be pointing outwards,” said Juhaidi.

Holding MACC Accountable: The Case of Ahmad Sarbani and Rosli Dahlan


Holding MACC Accountable: The Case of Ahmad Sarbani and Rosli Dahlan

Din Merican Newby Din Merican

The Malaysian courts are full of drama. Last week, the Sodomy II Trial of Anwar Ibrahim had the nation transfixed when two legal giants, candidate AG Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah and former Federal Court Judge Dato Seri Gopal Sri Ram, battled it out on whether any sodomy took place or whether it was just a political conspiracy.

But let us not forget other equally interesting cases involving the the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) which was established in January 2009. The MACC was supposed to be a fearsome anti-corruption body. Instead of being feared for stamping out corruption, the MACC gained infamy for causing deaths and fixing innocent citizens.

The first death in MACC’s custody was on  July 16, 2009, when Teoh Beng Hock was thrown out the MACC’s Selangor Office in Plaza Masalam, Shah Alam. The second death was on April 6,  2011 when Customs Director, Ahmad Sarbaini bin Mohamad was said to have jumped out of the MACC’s office at Jalan Cochraine, Kuala Lumpur. These two incidents established the MACC’s reputation for throwing people out of high-rise buildings and getting away with it.

The Commission of Inquiry and Coroner’s Inquest of these two deaths did not produce satisfactory answers neither to the family nor to the public at large. Both Teoh Beng Hock’s family and Ahmad Sarbaini’s family have filed lawsuits to hold MACC accountable for these deaths.

The honorable thing to do would have been to apologize to their families. But under advice of Attorney-General Gani Patail who is the Government’s legal advisor, MACC chose to fight these out. That is how dishonorable our Government has become under A-G Gani Patail.

image

What I find surprising is that Utusan Malaysia is not settling with Rosli despite having admitted to its false story and wrong doing in a public apology. I find it equally astonishing that A-G Gani Patail seems to be outsourcing all his work to private lawyers like Tan Sri Shafee Abdullah and Tan Sri Cecil Abraham.image

If that is the case, the government might as well close down the A-G’s Chambers, hire Shafee as the Public Prosecutor and hire Cecil Abraham, the drafter of the late PI Bala’s Second Statutory Declaration in the Altantuya Murder case, as the Attorney-General. That may be cheaper for the taxpayers.image

Today, the trial against MACC for causing Ahmad Sarbaini’s death begun. See the MalaysiaKini report: http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/280085

At the same time, another case against the MACC was supposed to take place this morning. This involved Lawyer Rosli Dahlan’s case against Utusan Malaysia and the MACC for conspiracy to fix him in 2007. Although Rosli’s case against the MACC was filed in 2009, A-G Gani Patail has resorted to all kinds of maneuvers to avoid going to trial. The same thing happened this morning when at the 11th hour the A-G asked the court to postpone Rosli’s trial.

That said, I sympathise with Rosli. I know that he had spent a lot of money to seek his redemption. And yet, he is being obstructed from having his day in court. If a lawyer of his outstanding credentials can suffer that fate, what chance do ordinary folks like us, and Kassim Ahmad, Azmi Shahrom, Adam Adli et. al have? The MACC and the A-G have deep pockets thanks to the Government of Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak.

The Questionable Trial of Anwar Ibrahim


November 7, 2014

The Questionable Trial of Anwar Ibrahim

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2014/11/questionable-trial-anwar-ibrahi-201411455121912547.html

by John L Esposito and John O Voll

In just the last two months, nearly two dozen activists have been charged under Malaysia’s archaic Sedition Act.

anwar_ibrahim2

His Freedom is on Trial

Anwar Ibrahim ( Malaysia’s Parliamentary Leader of the Opposition) is in the Malaysian Federal Court this week for what hopefully is the last chapter in a sordid affair that has done nothing but distract him from his reform agenda. We have been critical of Malaysia’s Judiciary in the past and hope that at this moment in time, the five judges at the Federal Court who are tasked with reviewing the appeal of Ibrahim’s March conviction on charges of sodomy, will adhere strictly to the Rule of Law and not be swayed by external political influences.

Malaysia as a Model Pluralistic Muslim Nation Under Tremendous Strain

Malaysia’s image as an example or a model of a Muslim majority country that is on a democratic path, economically vibrant, adheres to the rule of law, and a model to the world on how to exist as a pluralistic society is under tremendous strain today. Ibrahim’s trial is just one example of how dissident voices calling for reform of institutions in Malaysia are being persecuted.

In just the last two months, nearly two dozen activists have been charged under Malaysia’s archaic Sedition Act, including Anwar Ibrahim. Ultra right-wing groups have targeted minority communities threatening to burn bibles and tell the “immigrant” Chinese and Indian population of Malaysia to go home.

Academic Freedom too under Attack

Anwar at UM

Academic Freedom Under Attack

Academic freedom is also under attack. Two highly regarded professors were charged with sedition and Anwar Ibrahim’s lecture scheduled to take place at the University of Malaya on Monday night was systemically blocked. University staff, dismissed early in the day, and the front gates of the university were put on lockdown. A few thousand brave students defied the ban and were able to hear Anwar Ibrahim speak.

At a time when the world is confronting violent and regressive movements in parts of the Muslim world, Malaysia could be a shining example of what is possible when Muslims focus on rebuilding the tradition of scholarship, technology, and pluralism that is present throughout the history of Islamic civilisation. While the Prime Minister (Najib Tun Razak) has made positive remarks about the need for a “movement of moderates” in the Muslim world, the actions of his party at home belie his intentions.

The continuing efforts to use the judicial system against opposition political leaders will undermine Malaysia’s leadership role in regional and global affairs as well as weaken Malaysia’s traditions of political openness and democracy. Malaysian authorities, as Human Rights Watch Asia Director, Phil Robertson, has stated, “risk making a travesty of the country’s criminal justice system” unless they withdraw their case against Anwar Ibrahim.

Former US Vice President Al Gore framed the issue clearly last March when he said: “It is extremely disturbing that the government of Malaysia – by continuing to press this case beyond the bounds of reason, let alone the bounds of justice – has used the courts to short-circuit the political process.”

John EspositoJohn L Esposito is University Professor and Professor of Religion and International Affairs, Georgetown University.

His recent books are “The Future of Islam and (with I Kalin) “Islamophobia and the Challenge of Pluralism in the 21st Century.”

John O Voll is Professor of Islamic History at the Prince Alwaleed binJohn Voll Talal Center for Muslim-Christian Understanding at Georgetown University.

The views expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera’s editorial policy.

Message to all our Politicians


November 3, 2014

Message to all Politicians in Malaysia

It is good to remind all our politicians especially those who are in power of their primary duty. For that I chose this message from President Ronald Reagan of the United States.  Duty to King and Country. Where in that tagline does it say that personal and sectarian interest comes first? May I also remind religious bodies like MAIS, JAIS, JAWI and the Kedah-born Minister of Religion, Jamil Khir Bin Baharom that they should not act with impunity against those who dare to speak their minds against mindless orthodoxy. Leave Anwar Ibrahim, Adam Adli, Azmi Sharom, Kassim Ahmad, Rosli Dahlan, Sisters in Islam, Islamic Renaissance Front and others alone. –Din Merican

Ron Reagan

Defending our Fundamental Liberties: The case of MAIS Outlawing SIS


November 2, 2014

Defending our Fundamental Liberties: The case of MAIS Outlawing Sisters In Islam (SIS)

by Din Merican

On  October  17, 2014, I wrote about the need to create a defence fund for Kassim Ahmad. Please READ :here

To me, the inhumane arrest, the abduction from Kedah to Kuala Lumpur and the unlawful charging of Malay Intellectual, Kassim Ahmad, is a sign of the erosion of our democratic principles; the erosion of Rule of Law; and worse still, the erosion of Justice when the civil courts turn a blind eye to the unlawful things being done by the religious authorities.

Of late, the civil Courts seem to abdicate their constitutional duty to check on the religious authorities by conveniently saying that the civil courts cannot interfere with the jurisdiction of the Syariah Courts.

The civil High Courts which are vested with judicial powers in the Federation seemed intimidated by the religious authorities.  Is there something happening between the A-GC and the Judiciary that we should know? Judges like Dato Zaleha Yusof who had previously chided JAWI and JAIS are suddenly replaced by hard-line conservative judges to handle Judicial Review cases.

Challenge Kassim Ahmad intellectually

Challenge Kassim Ahmad intellectually

Before I digress, when I appealed that Malaysians should contribute to a fund to defend Kassim Ahmad, I stated that this fund is not exclusive to Kassim Ahmad but also for other similar persecutions that endanger our liberty and freedom; to secure a guarantee of our fundamental liberties.

I am happy to inform you that the fund has raised RM14,982.00. We should applaud the Malaysians who contributed. But I should also inform Malaysians that fighting legal battles with the authorities involve huge sums of money. In that sense, RM14,982 over two weeks is a paltry sum. It is not even enough to pay for the disbursements incurred for Kassim Ahmad, not to mention to pay the professional fees, which lawyers like Rosli Dahlan, Malik Imtiaz, Nizam Bashir , Fahro Azat and other like minded Muslim lawyers are prepared to waive.

Is Rosli Dahlan a deviationist just for defending Kassim Ahmad and acting for Marina Mahathir to sue ISMA?

Are Rosli Dahlan   Malik Imtiaz, Nizam Bashir  et.al deviationists ?

image

In other words, while these lawyers are providing their services Free of Charge, we Malaysians are not doing our part. We do nothing to fight for what we believe in. We are just deluding ourselves when we say that we love this country whereas we can’t even raise RM100,000 in that short time to fight for what we believe in.  we want to behave, then this country is going down a very slippery slope…fast!

So, Malaysians, come forth and contribute because recent events have shown that there is clear and present danger that more ominous things will come our way if we are lackadaisical about the ideals that we cherish. This country is going down the slippery road very fast because we do not care enough for those who are being persecuted for dissent (reasoned discourse).

I  used the Kassim Ahmad’s case merely to illustrate the  surreptitious  incursions by our religious authorities who can outlaw freedom of thought and ideas by a simple stroke of passing religious edicts called Fatwas which, when gazetted, suddenly become part of the laws of this country.

We all know that there are only 3 branches of government i.e. the Legislature, the Executive and the Judiciary. We also know that making the laws  of this country is the power of the Legislature whether Parliament or the State Assemblies. We also know that when the Executive misapplies the law, the Judiciary will keep them in check as it is the last bastion of justice. That is what we know and that is what we think those who govern us should know too.

Yet, what we didn’t know is that the religious authorities in this country (and there are 14 of them as we have 14 states in the Federation of Malaysia)  can exercise all the powers of these 3 different branches of government. And, they do it in a very unique way without following any legal sequence.

 The religious authorities of this country can just pass sentence on people with different views as deviationists without notifying them or hearing them out. Then the religious authorities just pronounce this sentence as law in the form of Fatwas. Finally, all they have to do is to just arrest those people whom they have already passed sentence on by arresting them and getting a syariah court to convict them.

Thus, in Kassim Ahmad’s case, MAWI/JAWI which are the religious authorities in Federal Territories outlawed Kassim Ahmad by decreeing that his ideas and thoughts are “sesat dan menyesatkan”. That is how they justified sending their officers to Kedah to abduct him and bring him to Kuala Lumpur to answer religious offence charges. And, soon the Syariah Court will just convict Kassim Ahmad because the civil High Court Judges will not stay JAWI from proceeding in the Syariah Court.

This practice of “outlawing” people and ideas which are  different from the ideas and thoughts of the religious establishments has become more serious when recently MAIS (Majlis Agama Islam Selangor) through the Mufti of Selangor gazetted a Fatwa  declaring that:

1. SIS (Sisters in Islam) and anyone else that practices Liberalism and Pluralism are deviationists;

2. All their publications are banned and can be confiscated;

3. MCMC are to censor and block their electronic media;

4. These deviationists can be compelled to corrective measures.

Read http://www.e-fatwa.gov.my/fatwa-negeri/pemikiran-liberalisme-dan-pluralisme-agama

Literally speaking, with one stroke of the pen, the religious authorities have “outlawed” the whole SIS Board, members, employees, contributors, supporters etc. They are condemned as deviationists without being duly notified nor to explain themselves. This is a clear violation of the Federal Constitution and the UNHCR Human Rights Declaration (which Malaysia is a signatory of that charter), that no one shall be condemned without the right to be heard.

Marina dalang LBGT?Is Marina Mahathir is a promoter of LGBT as accused by ISMA?

It is most alarming that without even specifically identifying the persons or publications, MAIS has practically declared every Muslim as potentially a deviationists. So, in effect, is MAIS also declaring that Tun Dr Mahathir and his daughter Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir (and her friends above), Dato Zaid Ibrahim and his son Ezra Zaid, academic Azmi Shahrom and anyone who supports them including the lawyers who act for them like Rosli Dahlan, Malik Imtiaz, Nizam Bashir  and Fahri Azzat also as deviationists?

Have they forgotten that it was Tun Dr Mahathir who promulgated Art.121(1A) into the Federal Constitution that gave them the powers that they now wield against him? Have they forgotten that Tun Dr Mahathir established the International Islamic University from which Rosli Dahlan and Malik Imtiaz graduated and are the very lawyers accusing these religious authorities of violating the Constitution? Are they now biting the very hand that created them and those that came from within their own fold?

Dr Mahathir said Jais needed to refer to the Quran to find out how to handle such situations instead of following the interpretations of some...

Dr Mahathir said Jais needed to refer to the Quran to find out how to handle such situations instead of following the interpretations of some…

The Third ban in that Fatwa is also worrisome. You now see a state Mufti directing MCMC to censor and ban internet social sites. Since when can a state Mufti have powers under the Multi Media Act to direct the MCMC to do anything? I suppose the MCMC Chairman Dato Shahril who is a Muslim can be charged by JAIS if he disregards the Mufti’s Fatwa?

The Fourth ban is very dangerous. In effect, it means that a deviationist can be detained in a corrective centre by the religious authorities until he disavows or recants his views, this is similar to being detained in prison indefinitely for contempt until the contempnor purges his contempt.

My Fellow Malaysians,  I have written this short piece to wake you up to the dangers that confront us. I appeal to you to come defend your rights. If you can see what I am seeing, then you will contribute to the Defence Fund which will be used not just for Kassim Ahmad, but also for such similar causes. So, please contribute generously to:

  Maybank Berhad A/C No 514011895152
 
  Swift code: MBBEMYKL