- POSTED: 05 Jan 2014 16:34
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About 100 people representing NGOs and political organisations under the umbrella of the Klang District Muslim Solidarity Secretariat held a peaceful demonstration at the Sultan Sulaiman field in protest against a remark on the use of the word “Allah” by a Catholic priest on Sunday.
KLANG: About 100 people representing NGOs and political organisations under the umbrella of the Klang District Muslim Solidarity Secretariat held a peaceful demonstration at the Sultan Sulaiman field in protest against a remark on the use of the word “Allah” by a Catholic priest on Sunday.
The organisations included the Klang branch of Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia, the Klang 4B Youth branch, Jalur Tiga (Jati) and Perkasa.
Kapar Umno Division deputy head Saroni Judi said the secretariat regretted that the priest, Father Lawrence Andrew, editor of The Herald Catholic weekly, had yet to tender an open apology over his remark that Catholic churches in Selangor would continue to use the word “Allah” in reference to God in their weekend service.
He said the secretariat would send an open protest letter to Father Lawrence on Sunday expressing its disappointment over the priest's remark which it felt went contrary to a decree of the Sultan of Selangor on the issue.
The secretariat had planned to stage the protest gathering in front the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes but changed the location to the Sultan Sulaiman field as a mark of respect for Christians.
Father Lawrence reportedly said on December 27 that Catholic churches in Selangor would continue using the word “Allah” in reference to God in their weekend service in Bahasa Malaysia, although the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) had issued a reminder on the prohibition on the use of the word by non-Muslims.
In Petaling Jaya, three more NGOs lodged a report against the remark by Father Lawrence at the district police headquarters.
They were Pertubuhan Martabat Jalinan Muhibbah Malaysia (MJMM), Sekretariat NGO Gabungan Negeri Selangor and Ikatan Rakyat Insan Muslim Malaysia (IRIMM).
MJMM president Abdul Rani Kulup Abdullah, speaking for the three NGOs, called on the authorities to take action against Father Lawrence.
IRIMM president Amir Amsaa Alla Pitchay said the NGO was also against a proposal by three DAP-elected representatives for the Selangor Non-Islamic Religions (Control of Propagation Among Muslims) Enactment 1988 to be amended.
"We urge the police to act against them," he said.
The DAP state assemblymen, Yeo Bee Yin (Damansara Utama), Rajiv Rishyakaran (Bukit Gasing) and Lau Weng San (Kampung Tunku), had proposed that the enactment be amended to safeguard the rights of non-Muslims.
In Melaka, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Idris Haron called on all quarters to refrain from getting involved in the polemics on the issue, to maintain racial and religious harmony.
He said they should not get emotional over the issue as this could lead to chaos in the country.