Court orders Home Ministry to file specialist report on use of the word Allah

Kuala Lumpur Court Complex. Wikimedia Commons photo

KUALA LUMPUR: The High Court here today ordered the Home Ministry to file a report by an expert on whether the use of the word “Allah” is exclusive only to Muslims in a judicial review application by a Christian woman.

Lawyer Annou Xavier, representing the woman,  Jill Ireland Lawrence, told reporters this after the case came up for management before Judge Datuk Nor Bee Ariffin, who sat in chambers.

Xavier said the report would be filed by the Home Ministry through the Attorney-General’s Chambers.

The report will be filed on or before this July 14, he said, adding that the court had also set Sept 19 to hear the merit of the judicial application.

Meanwhile, senior federal counsel Shamsul Bolhassan, representing the Home Ministry and the government, named as respondents in the application, said they would identify an expert on the matter for the purpose.

Lawrence, a Melanau from Sarawak, filed the judicial review application on Aug 20, 2008 for the return of eight CDs which were seized her on May 11, 2008, upon her arrival at the Low-Cost Carrier Terminal (LCCT) in Sepang.

The CDs were with the title “Cara Hidup Dalam Kerajaan Allah”,  “Hidup Benar Dalam Kerajaan Allah” and  “Ibadah Yang Benar Dalam Kerajaan Allah”.

On July 21, 2014, the High Court ordered that the CDs be returned to Lawrence, but it did not make an order on the declaration applied for by the woman that she had the right to keep, use and import published materials containing the word ‘Allah’.

On June 23, 2015, the Court of Appeal endorsed the High Court’s decision which ordered the Home Ministry to return the seized eight CDs belonging to her after dismissing the appeal by the ministry and Malaysian government against the High Court’s decision.

The Home Ministry was ordered to return all the CDs within a month from the date of the decision, and also ordered that the declaration sought by Jill Ireland be heard in the High Court. – Bernama

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