PKR will stick to its stand despite the Syura Council's decision that the word "Allah" is only to be used by Muslims. (Graphic by Dayang Norazhar/The Mole)
KUALA LUMPUR: Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) said it will not change its stand that the word “Allah” can be used by non-Muslims despite Pas' Syura council members being unhappy about.
PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution told The Mole: “The party sticks to its stand as mentioned in the press earlier by (opposition leader) Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim concerning the use of the word “Allah” by non-Muslims.”
“The question of influence should not arise as PKR is not trying to influence Pas in any way to change its stand towards the use of the word “Allah”.”
“We are not asking them to follow us,’’ he added.
He was commenting on a statement made by Pas Syura council chief Datuk HarunTaib who said that Pas will not follow nor be influenced by Anwar who allows non-Muslims to use the word “Allah” in their publications, one of which is in the Malay-language Bibles.
Harun was reported saying, “It is up to him (Anwar). If he does not agree or support the Syura Council’s decision, that is his problem. But I stand firm with the decision made by the Syura Council that the word “Allah” is only for Muslims.”
Anwar in a news report on Jan 24 said that Pakatan Rakyat’s stand on the word “Allah” remains unchanged despite Pas Syura Council’s decision that the word cannot be used to describe God in any non-Muslim publications.
“We have not revised our stand following the Syura Council’s decision on this matter. It can be brought up for discussion but so far there is none,” Anwar said.
Meanwhile, Saifuddin who is also Machang MP stated that the party respects Pas Syura Council’s decision.
“The Majlis Syura (Syura Council) consists of 12 religious scholars, they have their reasons on why the word should only be used by Muslims.”
“We have already stated our stand on the matter and made it clear to the public, it is a result of a collective decision, we will now leave it to the Pas leadership.’’
PKR vice-president Tian Chua when contacted said that they had no problem with the Syura Council’s decision over the issue.
“The Majlis Syura (Syura Council) is always independent, they make decisions based on theology and Pas has a separate structure completely on theology.”
“But the party decision is a party decision and I don’t think we should fight over the issue.”
When asked what he thought about the different views on the matter by the Pakatan Rakyat coalition, he said, “Theology is beyond our reasoning, it is something that Umno is trying to highlight.”
On Jan 22, a group of 10 Pas grassroots protestors had gathered in front of DAP national chairman Karpal Singh’s office in Penang to protest against the latter for interfering in the Pas Syura Council’s decision on the use of the word “Allah”.
Prior to this, Karpal had called on Pas president Datuk Seri Hadi Abdul Awang to ensure the council adheres to the Pakatan stand allowing non-Muslims to use the word “Allah”.