Ayah Pin follower allowed to dispute validity of provisions

PUTRAJAYA: An Ayah Pin follower has been granted leave by the Federal Court to challenge the validity of three provisions in two state enactments in Terengganu on the ground that the state legislative assembly (SLAT) had no power to enact them.

Chief Justice Ahmad Fairuz Sheikh Abdul Halim together with Federal Court judges Justices Alauddin Mohd Sheriff and Richard Malanjum granted Sulaiman Takrib’s application, saying that they were satisfied that leave was necessary and that there was an arguable case.

The three-man bench then fixed April 3 to hear the matter.

Sulaiman was represented by Malik Imtiaz Sarwar, Terengganu State Legal Advisor Ahmad Kamal Mohamad Shahid appeared for the state government, while Senior Federal Counsel Datuk Umi Kalthum Abdul Majid acted for the Federal Government.

Sulaiman, 56, is seeking leave to declare Section 10 and Section 14 of the Syariah Criminal Offences (Discretionary Penalty) (Terengganu) Enactment 2001 as well as Section 51 of the Administration of Islamic Religious Affairs (Terengganu) Enactment 2001 invalid.

He named the Terengganu State Government as the respondent. The Federal Government has intervened in this matter.

On Aug 23, last year, Sulaiman was charged in the Besut Lower Syariah Court with disobeying the orders of the Terengganu religious affairs department in being a member of the Ayah Pin deviationist sect.

He was among those found at the residence of Ariffin Mohamad, 65, or Ayah Pin, in Hulu Besut, when religious department officials raided the premises on July 2 last year.

The charge under Section 10 of the Syariah Criminal Offences Enactment (Discretionary Penalty) (Terengganu) 2001 carries a maximum fine of RM3,000 or two years’ jail or both.

Sulaiman faces another charge under Section 14 (1) (B) of the same enactment for possessing two video compact discs featuring acts deviating from Islamic teachings.

He pleaded not guilty to both charges.

Earlier, Ahmad Kamal, who opposed the leave application, submitted that SLAT was empowered to enact Section 51 of the Administration of Islamic Religious Affairs (Terengganu) Enactment (ARIA) and Sections 10 and 14 of the Syariah Criminal Offences Enactment 2001 as these were offences that related to offences against the precepts of Islam.

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The Star, Malasia
Feb. 23, 2006

Religion News Blog posted this on Thursday February 23, 2006.
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