KEPALA BATAS, Dec 15, 2014:

About 30 Umno members lodged a police report against Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng over the “Allah” issue today.

Umno Kepala Batas division vice-chairman Abdul Razak Ahmad led his men in lodging the report at the Seberang Prai Utara police headquarters.

Abdul Razak described Lim’s statement that non-Muslims in Penang could use the word “Allah” as irresponsible and seditious. Last week Lim, the DAP secretary-general was reported as saying that non-Muslims could use the word “Allah” as the Penang State Islamic Religious Administration Enactment 2004, which banned the use of the word, could not be enforced on them. He wanted the police to probe the matter and charge Lim under the Sedition Act.

The Penang fatwa on Allah ban was consistent with the fatwa issued by the National Fatwa Council and the Federal Court’s decision in The Herald case. “Lim’s statement had not only insulted Islam, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and the state fatwa council, but is also seditious. It is also an insult to Muslims.

“We want the police to take swift action and charge the Chief Minister for sedition,” Abdul Razak told newsmen after lodging the report.

Police have already opened an investigation paper on it and would be calling on Guan Eng soon to record his statement.

A list of 40 words such Allah, Solat, Ulama, Soleh, Mufti, Iman, Surau and Nabi, were decreed as exclusive to Muslims by the Penang mufti and enforced in 2010 as provided under subsection 48(3) and (4) of the Enactment 2004. Lim’s interpretation of the ban had drawn flak from various Malay-Muslim quarters, including Umno and Perkasa. Abdul Razak said Lim should have clarified the matter with the state executive councillor in charge of Islamic affairs Datuk Abdul Malik Kassim, the state Islamic council (MAIPP) president Mohd Salleh Man and the state Mufti Wan Salim Wan Mohd Noor, before issuing the statement. He pointed out that Section 3 of the 2004 Enactment stated clearly that the Yang di-Pertuan Agong was the head of Islamic affairs in Penang, as stated in the state’s constitution.

Meanwhile, in a press conference later, Guan Eng said the police report should have been lodged against MCA instead, for asking the Penang state religious enactment to be repealed.

Denying interfering with state religious issues, Lim said “neither DAP nor the Penang state government had ever asked for the repeal of the Administration of the Religion of Islam (State of Penang) Enactment 2004. “This inflammatory demand by MCA calling for the repeal of the Islamic Enactment is clearly a definite and serious interference in the administration of Islamic affairs.

“Why then is there no action or attacks by Umno against MCA?

“Clearly Umno and MCA are playing a double-faced political game of attacking me for being anti-Islam while both Gerakan and MCA have even attacked me for being anti-non-Muslim for doubling the annual budget’s allocation for Islamic affairs, compared with the previous BN government.”

He said he had yet to be called by the police to give his statement.

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