Stop campaigns that exploit religious, racial sentiments - Mohd Na'im

04 Sep 2023 04:17pm
Datuk Dr Mohd Naim Mokhtar - BERNAMA
Datuk Dr Mohd Naim Mokhtar - BERNAMA
PUTRAJAYA - Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs) Datuk Dr Mohd Na'im Mokhtar advised those involved in the Pulai parliamentary by-election to refrain from engaging in campaigns that manipulate religious and racial sentiments.

As an institution responsible for protecting the sanctity of Islam in the country, he said the Prime Minister's Department (Religious Affairs) is very concerned about certain groups issuing statements condemning those with differing beliefs.

"This situation will sow the seeds of even more serious divisions and threaten the security of the nation," he said in a statement today, following a statement by a political leader declaring it ‘haram’ (forbidden) to vote for a candidate contesting in the by-election.

"This matter can lead to misunderstandings within the community and tarnish the sanctity of Islamic teachings," he said, expressing concern about the tendency of those who issue Syariah-related rulings arbitrarily without the necessary discipline.

According to media reports, Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was reported to have declared it haram for those who vote for Pakatan Harapan (PH) candidate Suhaizan Kayat in the Pulai parliamentary by-election.

Mohd Na’im said the term haram, according to the Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka dictionary, can be defined in six meanings, which are the prohibition law (in Islam); prohibited; cannot be done with uncertain matters; truly; even a little; and none at all.

"However, the people of this country associate the use of the term haram with Syariah law, which is the law of prohibition (in Islam) that promises rewards for those who obey it and punishment for those who violate it.

"I hereby call upon all parties to be responsible in respecting the sanctity of Islam, preserving the unity and peace of the multi-ethnic and multi-religious society in this beloved country," he said.

The Pulai parliamentary and Simpang Jeram state by-elections are being held following the death of their incumbent Datuk Seri Salahuddin Ayub, who was also the Minister of Domestic Trade and Cost of Living, on July 23.
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