Hornbill Unleashed

October 7, 2014

Azmin to meet Selangor Islamic bodies over Bible impasse

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:00 AM
Tags: , , , ,

Azmin mingling with those who turned up at his Hari Raya Aidiladha open house today. Azmin says he is waiting for an explanation from Jais and Mais on the Bible issue. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Najjua Zulkefli, October 6, 2014.MD IZWAN

Selangor Menteri Besar Mohamed Azmin Ali is still waiting for the state Islamic authorities to explain the impasse over their seizure of Malay and Iban-language Bibles from the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM).

“I haven’t received an explanation from Jais and Mais. This will be the next issue we address as we have been focusing on the water restructuring agreement and other matters last week,” Azmin said when met at his Hari Raya Aidiladha open house in Hulu Kelang today.

Meetings with the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (Jais) and the Selangor Islamic Council (Mais) are in the pipeline, he said, adding that he had to prioritise which of the contentious issues inherited from his predecessor Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim to deal with first.

Azmin said he would send a formal written request to the federal government to release the Selangor water agreement from the Official Secrets Act. To date, his administration still has not seen a copy of the agreement signed by Khalid and Putrajaya, although they have been briefed on the documents by the state’s investment arm, Kumpulan Darul Ehsan Bhd (KDEB).

Asked whether the Bibles were still in the custody of the religious authorities, Azmin said he did not have that information.

“I have no information at this moment, I will discuss it with Jais,” he said.

He also would not commit to whether the Bibles will be returned until having met Jais.

“It depends on the discussion with Jais, it won’t be fair of me to make a decision now without getting the latest information,” he said.

More than 300 copies of the Bahasa Malaysia Alkitab and the Bub Kudus in the Iban language were seized from the BSM by Jais enforcement officers on January 2 this year.

The Attorney-General has decided not to press charges but the state Islamic authorities have also refused to return the Bibles, leading to the current impasse.

Lawyers have said that BSM can still file a civil action to force Jais and Mais to return the Bibles and could also ask for damages if the Bibles had been destroyed, although this would be awarded at the court’s discretion.

BSM has missed the 90-day window to file a judicial review on Mais’s June 13 decision not to return the Bibles despite the A-G not pressing charges.

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1 Comment »

  1. Azmin must reveal the truth and make those accountable if ever the bibles were already destroyed.

    Comment by Mata Kuching — October 7, 2014 @ 9:32 PM | Reply


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