After Zakir Naik’s controversial racial statements that have roused outcry throughout the nation, Melaka Chief Minister Adly Zahari stated that the India-born preacher is now prohibited from holding religious talks in the state, reported The Star.
On Sunday (18th August), he told the newspaper that, “We want to maintain this (race relations). So we decided not to allow Zakir to hold talks or gatherings here.”
Any issues that could heighten tensions among the races of Malaysia are being avoided by the Melaka state government.
Zakir Naik is now barred from speaking in public in 7 states in Malaysia, those being Melaka, Johor, Selangor, Penang, Kedah, Perlis, and Sarawak.
The latest states to express their opposition to Naik’s methods were Kedah, Penang, and Johor.
As a matter of fact, no approval has ever been given to Zakir Naik on conducting religious talks in Johor, according to Datuk Md Rofiki A. Shamdudin, Director of Johor Religious Islamic Department (JAIJ).
“Any religious preacher must get the necessary approval from JAIJ before they are allowed to conduct religious talks. This is to ensure these preachers do not say anything against our creed or aqidah,” he said.
The preacher is also not welcomed to speak at any public event in Penang, as stated by Penang Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Ahmad Zakiyuddin Abdul Rahman. To top it off, the decision to ban Zakir Naik from speaking in the state had already been made six months ago.
“When Zakir visited us, we discussed several things, including his wish to have talks here in Penang.”
“But we immediately told him that we felt whatever he wanted to talk about would not be suitable for the state,” he added.
This sentiment was reiterated by Kedah’s Religious Affairs Committee chairman, Datuk Dr. Ismail Salleh, who said that Zakir Naik’s involvement in any public event in Kedah was prohibited. In accordance with police advice, any of his ceramahs will be put on hold.
“Not only is Zakir Naik banned from giving ceramah in Kedah, we will also disallow anyone who poses a threat to the unity, harmony, and security of the state,” he said.
“We will not compromise on anything that will jeopardize the unity of the people,” said Datuk Dr. Ismail Salleh.
The Selangor Islamic Council (MAIS) chairman Datuk Mohammed Khusrin Munawi made his decision to bar Naik from public speaking following the preacher’s recent controversy.
“We believe it’s best to not have him deliver talks in Selangor because of what is happening currently,” he told The Star.
Other preachers and religious scholars who wish to give religious talks in the state must be screened by a committee chaired by the state mufti.
Source: The National
Zakir Naik has been banned from entering Sarawak by the state government since the time of late chief minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem, and last Friday (16th August) the state reaffirmed the decision, citing the potential danger Naik represented to Sarawak’s ethnic and religious harmony.
He was also prohibited by Perak from speaking at the “Malaysia Reverts Camp 2019” last Friday after concerns were raised regarding the effect the talks may have on racial harmony in the state.
Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal also said if there were to be any reports of Zakir Naik having extremist views, the preacher will be banned from entering Sabah.
Stay tuned for more updates on this developing story.