The Star, Tuesday August 26, 2008
By R.S.N. MURALI
KUALA TERENGGANU: A joint committee comprising syariah and civil court lawyers formed in April will be reactivated to solve conversion, inter-religion and other related issues.
Minister in the Prime Minister Department Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said the joint committee would discuss the sensitive issues in chambers and not in open court.
“The decision to reactivating the committee was reached by the National Fatwa Council as the best way to solve issues regarding inter-religion unions, and regarding other related issues as some are sensitive and could create unnecessary confusion,” he said after chairing the special National Fatwa Council meeting at Wisma Darul Iman here.
Ahmad Zahid said Islamic Development Department’s (Jakim) senior officers were in constant touch with the syariah and civil court lawyers on reviving the committee although the working group had been formed a few months ago.
“Our hope is that the committee is able to effectively troubleshoot sensitive issues,” he said.
Meanwhile, Ahmad Zahid said the Council felt that Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan’s swearing on the Quran was made in accordance with Islamic principles.
However, he urged Muslims in the country not to make swearing on the Quran (sumpah laknat) a trend to prove they were not guilty of wrongdoings or to stress their innocence in certain cases.
He said although the practice of taking oath had been propagated in Islam, it should not be frequently used as it could be misused by certain quarters as a tool to enshroud their offences.
“Such act of taking oaths raise doubts if it is often used. Its just like a blogger who made a statutory declaration on an individual recently without any basis.’
“I am not questioning the validity of the statutory declaration but when used often, people tend not to believe process,” he said.