Don’t Fan Religious Conflict; No ‘Allah’ Restriction For Sarawak, Sabah

SIM KUI HIAN

By SIM KUI HIAN
COMMENT: Shafie Apdal is clearly playing up religion-based sentiments, or totally ignorant of the laws, when he wrongly called on the Federal Government to allow non-Muslims in Sabah and Sarawak to use the word “Allah”.

2. The people of Sabah and Sarawak, whether Christians or Muslims or any other religion, have been free to use the “Allah” word and there has never been any restrictions – whether under State Law or Federal Law.

3. This was clearly spelled out in the 10-point solution which had been agreed on by the Federal Government in April 2011.

4. In addition, safeguards to guarantee for religious freedom in the Federation were put in place in Paragraph 15 of the Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC) Report 1962 and Article 3 (1) of the Federal Constitution whereby “Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation”.

This includes the freedom to the non-Muslims in Sarawak and Sabah to use “Allah” in their Bible or kitab as they have been doing so for hundreds of years even before the formation of Malaysia.

5. Shafie Adpal should not incite hatred and fan religious conflicts by falsely implying that people in Sabah and Sarawak are not allowed to use the word “Allah” when there are no such restrictions.

6. Please heed your own advice recently when you accused others of lacking ideas and have to playing the race or religion card.

• Dr Sim Kui Hian, is President, Sabah United Peoples Party (SUPP) and Minister of Local Government

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