Human Rights in Relation to the Federal Constitution of Malaysia – Part 1

Centre for Human Rights Research and Advocacy (CENTHRA) hosted an essay contest in 2015. I wanted to take part but I was not allowed because the age limit was from 18 years old and above. I was twelve at the time but I still wrote an essay on the topic given, and sent it to CENTHRA  as my submission for the contest even though I was told that I cannot take part because I was too young. I think young people like me must also be given the chance to voice out our opinions and not to be considered as immature. We also have our rights as granted by the Federal Constitution and the Convention of the Rights of the Child and we hope to be given the opportunity to be included in making the decision for the future of our country.


The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) was drafted as the result of the Second World War experience. It was proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in Paris on 10 December, 1948 General Assembly resolution 217 A as a common standard of achievements for all peoples and all nations.

Generally when people talk about human rights, they will be referring to the United Nations Human Rights Council’s (UNHRC) “common standard law of human rights” that was drafted by a group of people who subscribed to the ideology of liberalism.

The question is, is it fair to use the UDHR as the universal standard human rights law for all peoples from all nations in this world?

The Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action 1993 states the human rights regulations must take into account, the religions, customs and cultural systems of the region. In other words, the human rights of the people must be subjected to the aspiration of the people; and not only subjected to the aspiration of the committee of the UNHRC and the drafters of the UDHR alone.

Part I, Para 5 of Vienna Declaration and Programme of Action 1993:

All human rights are universal, indivisible and interdependent and interrelated. The international community must treat human rights globally in a fair and equal manner, on the same footing, and with the same emphasis. While the significance of national and regional particularities and various historical, cultural and religious backgrounds must be borne in mind, it is the duty of States, regardless of their political, economic and cultural systems, to promote and protect all human rights and fundamental freedoms.

In my opinion, human rights regulations must be subjected to the state laws of the Member State. Let us take Malaysia as an example. Malaysia is a country which has stated in its Federal Constitution (FC) that, “Islam is the religion of the Federation”, making Malaysia an Islamic country.

Article 3(1) of the FC:

Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.

Hence, any UNHRC human rights regulations that are against the law of Islam are against the FC which is the supreme law of Malaysia, as stated in Article 4 of the FC:

This Constitution is the supreme law of the Federation and any law passed after Merdeka Day which is inconsistent with this Constitution shall, to the extent of the inconsistency, be void.

Since the religion of Malaysia is placed under Article 3(1) of the FC, it shows the importance of Islam in the FC; hence the interpretation of other Articles of the FC must be harmonious with Islam; including the Articles about the human right of its people.

If we look at the UNHRC human rights conventions, we can see that some of the Articles of the conventions are against the FC. First, let us look at Article 18 of ICCPR:

Everyone shall have the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. This right shall include freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice, and freedom, either individually or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in worship, observance, practice and teaching.

Thus, Article 18 of the ICCPR is inapplicable and unconstitutional in Malaysia because, while Article 11(1) of the FC guarantees freedom of religion; the rights to propagate is subjected to Article 11(4). In the Federal Court judgement of ZI Publications Sdn Bhd and Another v Kerajaan Negeri Selangor, The Right Honourable Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif said:

“Thus, in the present case, we are of the view that Article 10 of the Federal Constitution must be read in particular with Articles 3(1), 11, 74(2) and 121. Article 3(1) declares Islam as the religion of the Federation. Article 11 guarantees every person’s right to profess and practise his religion and to propagate it. With regard to propagation, there is a limitation imposed by Article 11(4) which reads:-

“(4) State Law and in respect of the Federal Territories of Kuala Lumpur, Labuan and Putrajaya, federal law may control or restrict the propagation of any religious doctrine or belief among persons professing the religion of Islam.”

In the same judgement, Tan Sri Md Raus Sharif concluded that:

Federal Constitution allows the Legislature of a State to legislate and enact offences against the precepts of Islam. Taking the Federal Constitution as a whole, it is clear that it was the intention of the framers of our Constitution to allow Muslims in this country to be also governed by Islamic personal law.

Therefore, unlike the UNHRC liberal interpretation of freedom of religion, it is the right of the Muslims to be governed according to the Islamic law and to be protected against the secular and liberal ideology of the UNHRC common human rights regulations; apart from the freedom to manifest Islam in worship, observance, practice and teaching.

Article 18 of the ICCPR also gives people the freedom to choose whether they want to believe or not to believe in god. It is very important to understand that according to the Rukun Negara or the National Principles, the “freedom to have or to adopt a religion or belief of his choice” means ‘freedom of religion’ and not ‘freedom from religion’. The Rukun Negara clearly states that all citizens of Malaysia must believe in god in its first principal which is, ‘Kepercayaan kepada Tuhan’ or ‘Belief in God’. As opposed to the UNHRC’s ideas of human rights, atheism is not part of the rights guaranteed under the freedom of religion in Malaysia.

Apart from going against the Articles 3(1) and 11(4) of the FC; Article 18 of the ICCPR is also against the Articles 37, 38, 76 and 159(5) of the FC. That means it should be void even if it was signed by the federal government as pressured by the UNHRC.

According to Article 38 of the FC, the Parliament cannot make into law and implement Article 18 of ICCPR without the consent of the Conference of Rulers because it touches the matters of religious acts and observances.

Article 38(2)(b) of FC:

The Conference of Rulers shall exercise its functions of— (b) agreeing or disagreeing to the extension of any religious acts, observances or ceremonies to the Federation as a whole;

Article 38(2)(c) of FC:

consenting or withholding consent to any law and making or giving advice on any appointment which under this Constitution requires the consent of the Conference or is to be made by or after consultation with the Conference;

Also, Article 18 of ICCPR cannot be implemented and made into law without the concern of the Government of the State, as in accordance to Article 76 of the FC.

Article 76(1)(a) of FC:

Parliament may make laws with respect to any matter enumerated in the State List, but only as follows, that is to say – for the purpose of implementing any treaty, agreement or convention between the Federation and any other country, or any decision of an international organization of which the Federation is a member.

Article 76(2) ) of FC:

No law shall be made in pursuance of paragraph (a) of Clause (1) with respect to any matters of Islamic law or the custom of the Malays or to any matters of native law or custom in the States of Sabah and Sarawak and no Bill for a law under that paragraph shall be introduced into either House of Parliament until the Government of any State concerned has been consulted.

To be continued in Part II…

Lawmakers Must First Understand the Law

The failure to apprehend the supreme law of the land will lead to disloyalty to the Rulers and the country. And this is a problem that we are facing with some of our Members of Parliament and other political leaders; who not only fail to understand, but do not even want to make the attempt to learn and uphold the law; which brings us to all kinds of conflicting and out of context statements that should not have came from the people who proudly call themselves the lawmakers. Worst, there are even some of them who purposely misinterpret our supreme law for their own political agendas.

The simplest example is how they fail to respect and uphold the main fundamental principal of our country which is clearly written in the Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution. The words are crystal clear but some Members of Parliament and political leaders especially from DAP, PKR, and PAN are still denying the truth, and arrogantly insist that Malaysia is a secular country and Islam is merely the official religion; which in reality is a baseless and a malicious distortion of truth!

Members of Parliaments irrespective of their political ideologies are the lawmakers of the country; hence they must be responsible, constitutionally literate and must not in anyway try to debase the ideology of our country. Alas, instead of upholding the supreme law, some of these leaders are busy degrading and undermining the religion of the Federation. In other words, they are using their positions to corrupt the core foundation of our country and corrupt the minds of their supporters into believing in something that is not true.

It is unconstitutional for the lawmakers to deny the constitutional obligation of the government to protect and defend the sanctity of Islam and the position of Islam as the religion of the Federation. Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution says that:

3. (1) Islam is the religion of the Federation; but other religions may be practised in peace and harmony in any part of the Federation.

And to understand the interpretation of “other religions may be practised in peace and harmony”, we have read the Court of Appeal judgment of Titular Roman Catholic Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur v. Kerajaan Malaysia & Menteri Dalam Negeri where the then Federal Court Judge, Tan Sri Apandi Ali stated that:

It is my judgment that the purpose and intention of the insertion of the words: “in peace and harmony” in Article 3(1) is to protect the sanctity of Islam as the religion of the country and also to insulate against any threat faced or any possible and probable threat to the religion of Islam.

Unfortunately the phrase, “other religions may be practised in peace and harmony” is commonly used as the proof to debase the position of Islam as merely the official religion despite the fact that what was ever written is only, “Islam is the religion of the Federation” and not “the official religion”; and there is no Articles in the Federal Constitution that ever mentioned or implied that Islam is merely “the official religion” of the country.

It is the constitutional duty of the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong as the supreme head of our country to “at all time protect the Religion of Islam”, as said in the Article 37(1) or commonly referred to as the oath of the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong which was written in Part I of the Fourth Schedule of the Federal Constitution.

Article 37(1) of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia:

The Yang di-Pertuan Agong shall before exercising his functions take and subscribe before the Conference of Rulers and in the presence of the Chief Justice of the Federal Court (or in his absence the next senior judge of the Federal Court available) the oath of office set out in Part I of the Fourth Schedule; and the oath shall be attested by two persons appointed for the purpose by the Conference of Rulers.

Part I of the Fourth Schedule of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia:

OATH OF YANG DI-PERTUAN AGONG
Kami ……………………………………. ibni ……………………………………………………. Yang di-Pertuan Agong bagi Malaysia bersumpah dengan melafazkan:
Wallahi; Wabillahi; Watallahi;
maka dengan lafaz ini berikrarlah Kami dengan sesungguh dan dengan sebenarnya mengaku akan taat setia pada menjalankan dengan adilnya pemerintahan bagi Malaysia dengan mengikut sebagaimana undang-undang dan Perlembagaan yang telah disah dan dimasyhurkan dan yang akan disah dan dimasyhurkan di masa hadapan ini. Dan lagi Kami berikrar mengaku dengan sesungguh dan dengan sebenarnya memeliharakan pada setiap masa Agama Islam dan berdiri tetap di atas pemerintahan yang adil dan aman di dalam Negeri.

English translation taken from Part III of the Fourth Schedule of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia:

We …………………………………………. ibni ………………………………………………… Yang di-Pertuan Agong of Malaysia do hereby swear:
Wallahi; Wabillahi; Watallahi;
and by virtue of that oath do solemnly and truly declare that We shall justly and faithfully perform (carry out) our duties in the administration of Malaysia in accordance with its laws and Constitution which have been promulgated or which may be promulgated from time to time in the future. Further We do solemnly and truly declare that We shall at all time protect the Religion of Islam and uphold the rules of law and order in the Country.

Since the oath is the oath of office of the supreme head of the country, by law it is not only the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong who is bound by the majesty’s oath to protect the Religion of Islam, but also the Prime Minister, the ministers, the lawmakers and the government servants; for they are tasked with the duty of administering the country on behalf of the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong.

And the government’s constitutional duty to protect the sanctity of Islam is proven by the Court of Appeal judgement of Titular Roman Catholic Archbishop of Kuala Lumpur v. Kerajaan Malaysia & Menteri Dalam Negeri, when YA Dato’ Abdul Aziz Rahim said:

I would add however that the position of Islam as the religion of the Federation, to my mind imposes certain obligation on the power that be to promote and defend Islam as well to protect its sanctity. In one article written by Muhammad Imam, entitled Freedom of Religion under Federal Constitution of Malaysia – A Reappraisal [1994] 2 CLJ lvii (June) referred to by the learned counsel for the 8th appellant it was said that: “Article 3 is not a mere declaration. But it imposes positive obligation on the Federation to protect, defend, promote Islam and to give effect by appropriate state action, to the injunction of Islam and able to facilitate and encourage people to hold their life according to the Islamic injunction spiritual and daily life.”

And in the judgement of the Federal Court case of Fathul Bari Mat Jahya & Anor v. Majlis Agama Islam Negeri Sembilan & Ors, Tun Arifin Zakaria clarified that the integrity of Islam needs to be safeguarded at all cost.

The requirement of a tauliah for the purpose of protecting the public interest falls within the concept of Siyasah Syari’yah. Such order or direction is made not merely to prevent deviant teachings, but also to maintain order and prevent division in the community. Clearly, no one could suggest that the requirement of a tauliah as stipulated in s. 53 of the Enactment is a maksiat (vice). On the contrary, it is necessary in this day and age for the authority to regulate the teachings or preaching of the religion in order to control, if not eliminate, deviant teachings. The integrity of the religion needs to be safeguarded at all cost. That is what s. 53 purports to do. This being the case, the contention that the Syariah Court in Negeri Sembilan does not have the jurisdiction to try an offence under s. 53 of the Enactment is devoid of any merit. (paras 26 & 27)

Malaysia was formed as an Islamic country, and that the government is tasked to protect the religion of Islam, therefore, only those who are constitutionally illiterate and those who are blinded by their own illusions cannot see the truth, which unfortunately included our lawmakers; which is a very embarrassing situation! 

Hence, there is no legitimate reasons for the Members of Parliament, the lawmakers, the government servants and even the ministers to question the fact that Malaysia is an Islamic country. We cannot change the core foundation of our country that had united the people and give away what we have achieved just to chase the rainbows. We must not be blinded by the beautiful colours of the rainbow; and there is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Related articles:

Video: Flying Chairs In Rawang Storm Havoc

Yesterday at about 2 p.m. as we drove to a program in Melaka from Serdang, we were caught in a very heavy rain along the highway. 

The rain was especially heavy as we passed along the highway around the Universiti Putra Malaysia towards the Country Heights in Kajang.

And this morning, I saw the video below of a very terrible storm which hit the Rawang Golf Club.

Fortunately, we did not face such obstacle and there was no fallen trees along the Lebuhraya Utara-Selatan as we drove back from Melaka last night.

Editor-editor Media Mesti Disekolahkan Tentang Asas Kedaulatan Negara

[Karim’s Blog}- Membaca beberapa akhbar arus perdana dan liputan pelbagai portal berita berkaitan upacara pertabalan SPB YDP Agong Sultan Muhammad V, jelas menampakkan bahawa di kalangan wartawan dan ketua-ketua editor media, ramai yang masih tidak faham asas kedaulatan Negara serta Perlembagaan Persekutuan itu sendiri.

Kebanyakan media yang menyiarkan gambar YDPA mencium Al-Quran meletakkan ulasan (caption) “SULTAN Muhammad V mencium al-Quran iaitu lambang kemuliaan Islam sebagai agama rasmi negara pada Istiadat Pertabalan Yang di-Pertuan Agong XV di Istana Negara, semalam”

Ini adalah kesalahan besar dalam pemahaman tentang asas Negara dan kedudukan Islam di Tanah Air ini.

Sering kali media melaporkan bahawa “Islam Agama Rasmi” Malaysia. Malah ramai juga di kalngan pembesar Negara yang masih seing menggunakan slogan yang salah itu. Jika ada pun sesetengah Menteri yang sudah faham dengan menyebut Islam sebagai Agama Persekutuan atau Islam Agama Negara, tetapi apabila ianya dilaporkan oleh akhbar entah sama ada waratwan yang tidak petik dengan betul atau ketua-ketua editor yang tidak faham dengan asas Persekutuan Malaysia ini.

Perlembagaan Persekutuan adalah undang-undang utama Persekutuan seperti mana ditegaskan di dalam Perkara 4. Ini juga bermakna rangkap kata yang kita kerap dengar bahawa Islam itu adalah agama rasmi itu salah dan tidak berdasarkan Perlembagaan Persekutuan.

Kegagalan memahami perkara asas ini di kalangan petugas media dan ketua-ketua editor media membuat naratif yang salah ini diteruskan dan diulang-ulang. Mungkin perlu ada usaha untuk sekolahkan mereka ini agar penyampaian maklumat yang benar dapat disampaikan kepada masyarakat agar lebih fahami asas Negara yang bertunjangkan Agama Islam sejak dari kedaulatan pemerintahan Raja-Raja Melayu yang sudah beratus tahun.

Boo Su-Lyn Supports Nanyang’s ‘Monkey Act’

The Federal Constitution which is the supreme law of our country has to be respected in order to maintain a harmonious society.

We are governed by law and regulations to maintain law and order of our country and living in a civilised world, we should adhere to proper social etiquette that defines a civilised society hence, a total freedom of speech like mocking people’s religion cannot be accepted.

In a malicious article, entitled “Making monkeys out of us”, Malay Mail Online’s Boo Su-Lyn tries to justify the controversial and spiteful Nanyang Siang Pau’s ‘Monkey Act’ caricature on the pretext of press freedom.

Claiming it is not even offensive, Boo questions the actions taken by the authority and the complains made by the people and want the government to allow people to say whatever they want, as long as they do not advocate physical harm”; a situation made possible only in a fantasy world.

For most opposition-inclined activists, freedom of speech only applies to them, hence they are free to slur and mock others but not the other way around.

Below are with my answers (blue) to all Boo’s “Making monkeys out of us” (red).


APRIL 14 — When I applied seven years ago to be a journalist, my boss told me that my job was to report the “facts”, not the “truth”, since I was a bright-eyed, bushy-tailed wannabe-activist then.
Along the way, I gradually learned the difference between the two. Now, of course, we have “alternative facts” and “fake news.”
For example, Boo Su-Lyn’s “alternative facts”, “fake news”, fake facts and malicious accusations regarding Islam.
What is worse – beyond those terms that Malaysia has long used even before Donald Trump became US president – are the increased incidents of censorship and attacks on press freedom and freedom of speech.
We do not live in the dark ages and we are a civilised society. A gross slur on the country’s religion and the authorities on the pretext of “press freedom and freedom of speech” is wrong and uncivilised. Furthermore, Malaysia is not a lawless country, we are all governed by law. 
It’s hard to report the facts under such circumstances.
Yes, it is hard to report real facts when the truth must be spun.
In the latest incident, the Home Ministry has summoned the editor-in-chief of Nanyang Siang Pau over its cartoon on the RUU355 issue that depicted PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang and Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia as monkeys.
Is Boo saying that the apology from Nanyang Siang Pau is not sincere and that the slur on Islam and the parliamentary procedure is only part of  Nanyang’s “press freedom and freedom of speech”?
The Tuesday announcement came hours after PAS Youth and several Muslim NGOs staged a protest outside the Chinese-language newspaper’s office.
If it is true that the Nanyang Siang Pau’s apology is just a deception as indirectly implied by Boo, no wonder PAS Youth members took the action. Furthermore PAS Youth and the Muslim NGOs are just expressing their freedom of speech” and freedom of expression.
The police have also waded in and said they’ll launch an investigation, with the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) warning the media against publishing “sensitive” cartoons.
It seems like the PDRM, especially the Inspector-General of Police is the ‘prime target’ for Boo and her gangs; therefore it proves the integrity and professionalism of the police force so far.
Nanyang was simply mocking the RUU355 debacle that has seen the fifth tabling of Hadi’s Bill – which seeks to enhance Shariah punishments – without resulting in a debate and vote.
The way Boo puts it, when she refers the parliamentary procedure as “the RUU355 debacle”, shows that she herself is mocking and debasing the long process of tabling the Act; which shows people like Boo Su-Lyn have no empathy and respect towards the rights of others.
The amendment of Act 355 is important to the Muslims who are the majority population of Malaysia. It is a move to uphold Islam as the religion of the Federation, so mocking such a very sensitive matter is uncalled for.
Alas, the arrogant Boo is mocking the process by referring it as “the RUU355 debacle”.
Last Thursday, the Speaker postponed the debate after allowing opening arguments from PAS, saying: “If you don’t use your power, you are a bloody fool. Today, I don’t want to be a bloody fool.”
The Speaker had to deal Lim Kit Siang and a few other opposition Members of Parliament who were behaving like spoiled children trying to disrupt a parliamentary process and denying the rights and the power of the Speaker in carrying out his duty as the the presiding officer of the Dewan Rakyat.
The Nanyang cartoon shows the “Hadi” monkey offering the RUU355 “hot potato” to the “Pandikar” monkey, who leaps off the tree saying, “Keep it for next time”, as a bunch of monkeys get into a fight below. The cartoon is captioned: “Monkeys playing tricks”, with the word “tricks” referencing the Bill.
Was the cartoon offensive? Opinions are sure to differ.
A person does not have to be smart to answer the above questions.
 1) The cartoon is offensive to the supporters of the amendment of Act 355 because matters relating upholding Islam is a “no-mocking’ matters to the Muslims.
 2) The cartoon is not offensive to people like Boo Su-Lyn because they are the ones who are the mocker or the trouble makers.
To me, calling someone a “bitch” or a “slut” is far more offensive than calling them a “monkey.” Yet, the police aren’t hunting down people who make such offensive remarks against women online.
Another deception of truth using an out of context argument. This is not just another case of name-calling or people make rude and offensive remarks as published daily by the opposition and the ‘opposition-inclined’ news portals, for example Free Malaysia Today and Malay Mail Online.
Nanyang is bounded by regulations and law because we are not living in dark ages or in a lawless country where anyone can do just anything they fancy.
Even if Boo Su-Lyn tells people to call her monkey, she has no right to tell the Muslims to let non-Muslims humiliate Islam by implying the amendment of Act 355 is like a monkey business; after all the caricature was titled “Monkey Act” (as translated by most reports) for a reason, isn’t it?
Why should a newspaper face State action over a caricature when Hadi is free to call the DAP a piece of “shit”? To be clear, I’m not advocating for police investigations against Hadi.
Is she serious? The newspaper insults Islam while Dato’ Seri Haji Hadi did not insult any religion. Islam is the religion of the Federation but DAP is only a political party and not even a religion. Dato’ Seri Haji Hadi said that DAP is a piece of “shit” from PAP, a rude way to say that DAP is a spin-off from PAP. It is rude but not seditious nor malicious. DAP leaders not only slur PAS but they also make offensive and seditious statements towards Islam. In fact, Boo herself wrote a lot of malicious and seditious articles which are offensive to the Muslims. If Haji Hadi must be investigated, so must Boo Su-Lyn and DAP leaders.
The point is everyone should have the right to freedom of speech, no matter how crude and offensive they are.
So, Boo must now fight for the Speaker’s, PAS Youth’s and Muslim NGOs’ rights to their freedom of speech. It is not fair if the rights to go on a “crude and offensive” mocking spree is only bestowed on Boo and her gangs.
The Nanyang cartoon wasn’t even mocking Islam; it was just taking a jibe at the way Hadi’s Bill has been politicised for two whole years since it first appeared in Parliament’s Order Paper in April 2015.
Islam is a way of life and as a non-Muslim and especially an atheist Boo Su-Lyn has no right to comment about Islam. Neither PAS nor UMNO politicised the Bill.
A piece of legislation cannot be equated to a religion.
As an atheist, she fails to understand how people feel about their religion as she doesn’t even have a religion.
Malaysia is a multi-cultural society, which means that our lawmakers in Parliament come from diverse backgrounds. Just because a certain Bill touches on religion (in the case of RUU355, it’s specifically on the Shariah court system), it does not mean that those of other faiths cannot question it.
One need to be constitutionally literate in order to talk about legal matters. The fact that Malaysia is a multi-cultural society makes it crucial for the people to respect the rights of others as provided by the Federal Constitution. Please refer to Article 11(3) of the Federal Constitution before making a statement on this matter.
If that were the case, then we might as well prevent non-Muslim MPs from debating and voting on RUU355.
Muslims leaders obey the Federal Constitution and do not do things based only on emotion.
Or we might as well prevent Muslim MPs from debating and vosion ting on the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976, since its proposed ban on unilateral child conversions deals primarily with the rights of non-Muslim parents and children.
This is the problem when a person who is constitutionally illiterate comments on parliamentary procedure. It is unconstitutional to restrict the non-Muslims Members of Parliament from voting on matters regarding Islam in Parliament.
The intellectual growth of the nation will be stunted if people are not allowed to question or to make criticisms on topics like religion. Any religious belief, or even the lack of belief like atheism, should be subject to debate, criticism, and yes, even satire.
Please study the law of our country before making senseless comments. Boo Su-Lyn’s ‘logic’ on matters of religion is only accepted by the liberals. By the way, atheism is against both our Federal Constitution and Rukun Negara, so it has no legal standing according to the supreme law of our country.
Freedom of speech is especially necessary in cases where religion is used as a basis for policymaking, be it healthcare, education, marriage, or childbearing.
Policy making must be based on the ideology and the law of a country. We cannot force a secular country to make state policies based on religion and like wise we cannot force an Islamic country like Malaysia to make policies based on freedom of speech.
In Malaysia, religion features in many of our policies, which makes it all the more important to ensure that the interests of the citizenry are not sacrificed for someone’s personal beliefs.
In Malaysia, Islam is not merely “someone’s personal beliefs” but it is the religion of the Federation as enshrined by the Article 3(1) of the Federal Constitution. “The interests of the citizenry are not sacrificed” by Islamic policies because it is only for the Muslims. Regarding the amendment of Act 355, it is the non-Muslims who are trying to deny the rights of the Muslims.
If Malaysia really wants to go all out in preserving “national harmony”, then they can look at Singapore which prosecuted teenager Amos Yee for insulting Christians and Muslims and more recently, fined and deported a Muslim imam for saying during Friday prayers: “God help us against Jews and Christians.” Singaporean authorities even gave stern warnings to two Facebook users in the imam’s case.
I agree that Malaysia should take stern actions on people who try to interfere with other people’s religion especially Islam, the religion of the Federation. Unlike Malaysia, Singapore is a country without a religion, thus all religions are at par as according to the Constitution of Singapore; so legal matters regarding religions cannot be the same for both countries.
Christians and Muslims are minority groups in Singapore, forming 18 per cent and 15 per cent of the population respectively in the 2010 census. Buddhists and Taoists comprise the biggest religious group at 44 per cent. A significant percentage, 17 per cent, say they have no religious affiliation.
So Malaysia can take the Singapore route if it wants to and prosecute criticism and insults of any religion, without being biased towards a certain faith.
In the High Court decision of the case, Meor Atiqulrahman bin Ishak & Ors v Fatimah Sihi & Ors[2000]  1 MLJ 393, the then Justice Mohd Noor Abdullah had clearly clarified that other religions have no equal standing as Islam:

In my opinion, “Islam is the religion of the Federation but other religions may be practied in peace and harmony” means that Islam is the main religion among other religions that are practied in the country such as Christians, Buddhists, Hindus and others. Islam is not equal to any other religion, not sitting together or stand upright. It sits on top, he walked past, located in the field and his voice heard. Islam is like teak trees – tall, strong and skilled. If not so Islam is not the religion of the Federation but is one among several religions practised in the country and everyone is equally free to practice any religion he professes, no more one than the other. Provisions ‘Islam is the religion of the Federation’ shall be defined and reviewed with the objective to read other provisions of the Constitution, especially Article 89, 152, 153 and 14.

If “national harmony” is the reason for clamping down on freedom of speech, it’s preferable to go after those who mock any religion rather than take action against people who criticise a certain faith.
Boo Su-Lyn is either delusional or in a bad faith accused that it is lawful to mock any religion but Islam in Malaysia.
This way, everyone will be happy and there will be genuine “national” peace and harmony across race and religion.
In case Boo is unaware, the president of Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (ISMA) was charged in court under the Sedition Act 1948 for questioning the citizenship of the Chinese.
Of course, the best way for our country to develop intellectually is to truly protect fundamental liberties and to allow people to say whatever they want, as long as they do not advocate physical harm.
Fundamental liberties is stated in Part II of the Federal Constitution and as we live in Malaysia, we follow the Malaysian laws.
We shouldn’t try to be like robotic Singapore. Instead Malaysia should aim higher and allow the diversity of thought and opinion to flourish.
The opposition had always named Singapore as an example which Malaysia should follow, but now they don’t want Malaysia to become like “robotic Singapore”; cherry picking again.
Singapore has both the Internal Security Act 1985 and Sedition Act 1948, while Malaysia was forced to abolish the Internal Security Act 1960 by human right activists and is left with only the Sedition Act which is now under attack by the same group. Weirdly, the same group praises Singapore for its law-and-order policy.
If Boo lives in Singapore, I am doubtful if she dares to do what she is doing now. If Malaysia is as what portrayed by Boo, she would have been charged under the Sedition Act a long time ago. But she is still free to slur seditious and spiteful statements with malicious intent about Islam that can promote ill will and hostility or hatred between different races and religions of Malaysia, which is chargeable under both Section 3(1)(e) and Section (3)(1)(ea) of the Sedition Act 1948.
She must be thankful that at least she is has yet  to be charged for making seditious statements. This proves that Malaysia does support freedom of speech. If not, not only Boo but a lot others including some online portals have been charged for making or publishing malicious and spiteful contents.

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Peter Chong Had Wasted Police’s Time and Energy

Malaysian IGP, Khalid Abu Bakar released a statement stating that the ‘disappearance’ of Peter Chong wasted a lot of the police’s time and energy.

In a press confrence at Bukit Aman earlier today, he said that Chong had put the public in a state of fear, and had wasted the police’s time.

I’m sure the opposition supporters will cause a deafening uproar if Peter Chong is not one of them.

Further news can be read in the report made by Free Malaysia Today:


.::Report by Free Malaysia Today::.

KUALA LUMPUR: Activist Peter Chong, who was thought to have been abducted, wasted the police’s time and energy, said Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar.

He said Chong’s two-week disappearance had put the public in a state of fear, as they believed that abduction cases were on the rise.

“He (Chong) got the public shocked. So we want to find out why he did that.

“Of course he has wasted our men’s time,” he told a press conference at Bukit Aman here today.

Chong was reported missing on April 5, but police later discovered that he had gone to Thailand.

The activist later told police that he went to Hatyai on April 7 to meet a source who claimed to have information on the whereabouts of Pastor Raymond Koh, who was abducted on Feb 13.

Chong alleged that he was then abducted and taken to Pattaya before being released.

Hatyai police however said they had not received any report regarding the abduction, and that they would take action against Chong if he was found to have fabricated the incident.

Pattaya police echoed the warning, adding that they too had no knowledge of the alleged abduction as no report had been lodged.

Khalid had said Malaysian police were working with their Thai counterparts to investigate Chong’s abduction claim.

“We are checking with Pattaya police. We will wait for their response before taking further action.

“We can’t make any assumptions. Whether there was a police report or not, we will wait for feedback from there (Thailand),” he said.

‘Missing’ Peter Chong is Back From Pattaya

Breaking news!

One out of the five ‘missing’ people, Peter Chong has been ‘found’!

Well, the police found out that he is not even lost after all, but went on a trip to Thailand without telling anyone.

That made some people went hysterical about his ‘disappearance’ and made all kinds of theories including conspiracy theories.

Some accused that he was abducted and openly blamed the Malaysian Police and the government for his disappearance, only to find out that he was on a trip.

So, they all went crazy over nothing, putting the blame on the innocents, pointing fingers to who ever they wish and condemning the authorities; and did all that for nothing!

That is the mentality of some people from the opposition parties, who are fast to blame others especially the government and the authority for everything without investigations.

So, since it is proven that they had wrongly accused others and the authorities, are they going to issue an apology?


.::Report by Free Malaysia Today::.

PETALING JAYA: The former aide to a PKR MP, who was said to have gone missing since April 5, has been found and has returned to Kuala Lumpur, Inspector-General of Police Khalid Abu Bakar announced today.

“Missing Peter Chong is back from Pattaya this afternoon,” Khalid said on his Twitter account, while congratulating the police force.

Police took a statement from Chong at the Kuala Lumpur International Airport before he joined his family members about 2pm.

When contacted, Kuala Lumpur police chief Amar Singh Ishar Singh, said Chong told police he had gone to Hatyai with the intention of meeting his source who was to reveal more information on the disappearance of Pastor Koh Keng Joo.

Upon reaching Hatyai, he claims he was abducted and brought to Pattaya.

Upon release, he said he contacted his son who bought his return ticket home.

On Wednesday, Khalid had said police had information that Chong had crossed the border into Thailand at the Bukit Kayu Hitam checkpoint.

Chong, a former aide to PKR MP Sivarasa Rasiah, was said to have disappeared days after he related on Facebook about his conversation with a stranger, who warned him to be more careful in the wake of several cases of missing activists.

Chong’s son, Darryl, had lodged a police report on April 8 after attempts to contact his father failed. A task force was subsequently formed to look into Chong’s disappearance.

Chong’s disappearance came after the widely reported abduction of Pastor Raymond Koh, as well as the cases of Pastor Joshua Hilmy, his wife Ruth Hilmy and Perlis-based social acitivist Amri Che Mat.