Malaysia: Documents showing why non-Muslims banned from using word “Allah” are ‘secret’

Source: Sabah church seeks basis for ‘Allah’ ban, but govt says it’s a ‘secret’ | Malaysia | Malay Mail Online

A Sabah church today asked the courts to order the government to disclose documents showing why it had banned non-Muslims from using the Arabic word “Allah”, but the government objected by saying such documents were classified as “official secrets”.

Lim Heng Seng, the lead counsel for the Sidang Injil Borneo (SIB) Sabah church, argued that it was necessary for the government to reveal information relating to its original ban in 1986 on the word “Allah” in non-Muslim publications.

Noting that the Home Ministry had cited the 1986 government circular after its 2007 seizure of SIB Sabah’s Christian education, Lim said this initial ban was the “root” behind recurring problems faced by local Bahasa Malaysia-speaking Christians who have been using the word “Allah” for hundreds of years.

He described the situation as akin to the “Sword of Damocles” hanging over Malaysian churches’ head, where the 31-year-old ban was not always enforced but would from time to time be used by “little Napoleons” for seizures that would later be reversed after brought to the attention of senior officials like the prime minister or ministers.

“In what way is it justified that the word used for generations is a threat to public order? Show us the documents,” he told the High Court here, arguing that the government could not “out of the blue” stop the Bahasa Malaysia-speaking Christians from using the “Allah” word which they consider sacred.

“We have no such research, we have no such reports prior to or after 1986 that shows Christians using the word ‘Allah’ have caused public disorder,” he further said.

Noting that the government has neither denied nor confirmed the existence of documents which were used for the 1986 ban’s basis, Lim said the government should either furnish the information or clarify that it did not have such documents.

This would then allow the courts to determine if the government had imposed a reasonable restriction — such as when public order is under threat — on the local Christians’ constitutional rights, he said.

‘Official secret’ is just a label?

Senior federal counsel Shamsul Bolhassan had argued that the documents sought by SIB Sabah cannot be disclosed as they fall under the Official Secrets Act 1972 (OSA).

Lim had earlier acknowledged that the government would not be required to reveal the existence of documents if it would hurt public interest, arguing however that the “official secret” phrase used to classify certain government documents is just a “label”.

“Just because the magic word ‘OSA’ is pasted on a certain document, that doesn’t make it injurious to public interest,” Lim argued.

Shamsul had also described the church’s application for document disclosure by the government as a “fishing expedition”, arguing that it was not relevant when it was not shown that the government’s evidence was inaccurate or false.

“So to sum up, we say the applicants have no right for discovery and we say they are not entitled for this discovery application,” he said.

High Court judge Datuk Nor Bee Ariffin said the decision on the church’s discovery of documents application will be delivered on a later date.

The church had sought for two sets of documents, including documents such as letters and meetings minutes containing the reasons for the government’s 1986 “Allah” ban; documents showing confusion among Malaysians or misunderstanding between Muslims and Christians over the use of the word “Allah” in Bahasa Malaysia Christian publications; or showing threats to public order due to non-Muslims’ use of the term.

The second set of documents sought was for those where the government had granted approval to import, publish, produce, distribute or own any Christian publications with the word “Allah”.

Sabah SIB today informed the judge that it was not pursuing its previous application to cross-examine Home Ministry official Barkhiya Shahiruddin, saying that the documents if disclosed or revealed as non-existent would be sufficient for them to proceed with the lawsuit.

The Federal Territories Islamic Religious Council, represented by Zirwatul Hanan, was present in court today as amicus curiae or friend of the court.

Today’s court case was sparked off by the August 15, 2007 seizure of SIB Sabah’s Sunday school materials at the Low Cost Carrier Terminal airport in Sepang, with the education materials for Christian children then returned on January 28, 2008 under the condition that the front page would be stamped with a “cross” sign and the words “ Christian publication”.

SIB Sabah and its president Rev Datuk Jerry Dusing had on December 10, 2007 filed for judicial review against the Home Ministry and government, but the case involving the former’s constitutional rights has yet to be heard on its merits.


The real secret it out: Islam is not a religion of peace, rather, it is a supremacist ideology designed to deceive, conquer through violence, and enslave. All for Allah.

3 thoughts on “Malaysia: Documents showing why non-Muslims banned from using word “Allah” are ‘secret’

  1. Under sharia law (SATANS Law) any non-muzzie is forbidden to speak anything of islam. You run the rick of death as a non-muzzie (Not one of SATANS Children) if you say anything about islam or allah. The muzzie G-D they call allah is SATAN!!!!!!!!!!!!

  2. They stopped short of making a law with real teeth. The word Allah should be banished for ALL. Including the hate book, the quran. Of course in Malaysia, over 63% are muslims so it just shows us that the muslims are continuing to persecute all non muslims relentlessly. That’s what they do all over the world.

  3. allah isn’t God so I would only use it when referring to Satan because Satan uses the alias name of satan… here is why:

    I. Who is the murderer?

    1. allah – a murderer – moslems should strike off
    the heads of unbelievers and massacre them. Koran47.4

    2. Satan – The devil was a murderer from the
    beginning.’ John 8:44

    3. YHWH/God – No murderer has eternal life’ 1
    John 3:15

    II. Who is the liar (why would a god need to lie?):

    1. Allah is a liar – “Allah misleads whom it
    will’. Koran 13:27

    2. Satan – The devil is a liar and the father
    of lies. John 8:44

    3. YHWH/God – God cannot lie. Titus 1:2,
    Hebrews 6:18

    III. Who is the deceiver or seducer or plotter? A plot is
    a ploy, or trick, to deceive people to get control.

    1. Allah – allah is a deceiver/seducer.
    ‘Allah is the best of plotters.’ Koran3:54, 8:30, 13:42

    2. Satan – Satan which deceives the whole
    world. Revelations 12:9

    Satan said, ‘I will seduce/deceive men on earth’. 15:39

    3. YHWH/God – ‘God of truth’ Deuteronomy 32:4

    IV. Who loves the unbelievers?

    1. Allah – allah does not love unbelievers.
    Koran 30:45, 5:87

    2. Satan – ‘Jesus healed all that were oppressed of
    the devil’. Acts 10:38

    3. YHWH/God loves unbelievers. ‘God so loved
    the world’ John 3:16 (yeah, that means God loves moslems too even
    though they bow to a rock and Satan.

    V. Koran admits that allah is not God

    Koran 45:49 وَأَنَّهُ هُوَ رَبُّ الشِّعْرَىٰ – And
    that he (allah) is the lord of Sirius (the star which the pagan arabs used to
    worship); Mushin Khan Translation

    according to the koran, the scriptures are the truth and
    one can show via the Bible and koran that allah is Satan. Who is the Lord
    of the World?

    koran 1:2 [All] praise is [due] to Allah , Lord of
    the worlds

    2 Corinthians 4:4

    4 in whose case the god of this [a]world (Satan or his
    alias that is allah) has blinded the minds of the unbelieving [b]so that they
    might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image
    of God.

If sharia law continues spreading, you'll have less and less freedom of speech - so speak while you can!

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