Tuesday, October 22, 2013
Backpedaling on Allah (Malaysia)
A few weeks ago, I mentioned that a Malaysian High Court ruled that only Muslims could use the word "Allah" to describe God. Now, it seems, the government of Malaysia is engaging in damage control to mitigate the fallout of the decision. According to BBC, Prime Minister Najib has stated that christians in states of Sabah and Sarawak could continue to use the word "Allah", particularly in bibles in the Malay language (coincidentally, parties from Sabah and Sarawak form a key part of the Barisan Nasional coalition). In essence, it appears Najib is attempting to add footnotes to the court's decision after it has already been published. Given that courts in Malaysia are not entirely free from government influence, it will be interesting to see if his comments have any effect on future rulings on the issue.