People at IRF


Datuk Seri Ustaz Ahmad Awang


Datuk Seri Ustaz Ahmad Awang is a renowned Islamic scholar and a former Head of Malaysian Ulama’ Association from 1981-1999. He has a Master in Sharia and Diploma in Education from the Al-Azhar University, Cairo, Egypt. He is a former Deputy Chairman, Malaysian Chapter of the International Union of Muslim Islamic Theologians (Al-Ittihad al-‘Aalami li’Ulama’I al-Muslimin) headed by Ahmad Ar-Raysuni, the supreme authority of the Muslim Brotherhood; and also a member of the International Union of Theologians of Resistance (Al-Ittihad al-‘Aalami li’Ulama’I al-Muwqawwamah) based in Beirut, Lebanon. He is a former Director of Da’wa & Islamic Research Centre, Department of Islamic Development, Prime Minster Department; and currently the Chairman of the Alliance of World Masjid in Defence of Al-Aqsa and Chief Advisor to the Malaysian post-Islamist party, Parti Amanah Negara.

Datuk Dr Muhammad Nur Manuty


Datuk Dr Muhammad Nur Manuty is an eminent Islamic scholar and holds a Master and PhD from Temple University, Philadelphia, in Contemporary Islamic Thoughts.He was a Malaysian Senator from 2015 until 2018. He was also a former President of the distinguished Muslim Youth Movement of Malaysia (ABIM) from 1991-1997 and a Chairman of the Board of Directors, Universiti Sultan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) from 2018 until 2021. He is currently Chairman of Religious Strengthening and Understanding Bureau, People’s Justice Party or PKR, a reformist political party in Malaysia.

Executive Director

Ustaz Ali Muda

Executive Director

Ustaz Ali Muda is a graduate of Syari’ah from Al-Azhar University, Cairo. He obtained his Master Degree in Education from the National University of Malaysia. He has a vast experience in teaching Arabic language and Islamic Studies in schools around the country. He was also involved in training teachers in the Ministry of Education in Arabic language curricula and was entrusted by the former Religious Minister in elucidating the concept of rahmatan lil-ālamin (blessings to the entire universe) based on maqāsid asy-syari’ah (higher intention of the Islamic jurisprudence) to the high-ranking government officers.

Executive Director

Azrul Asmadi

Executive Director

Azrul Asmadi is a social researcher and a qualified Green Building consultant committed to bringing balance to nature. He champions and promotes sustainable living. Having earned his Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Manchester, Azrul served an engineering outfit in Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for almost 5 years where he also attended Islamic religious studies in the community. He believes the ‘Veil of Ignorance’ concept may leap our current circumstances so we can objectively consider how societies should operate. This father of five has an in-depth interest in the difference between the East and West civilisation, values, social and economic impacts. He also maintains a keen interest in human rights, civil society, politics, and international relations. Azrul promotes the concept of ‘the oneness of God’ approach as an answer to deal with the challenges faced by religion towards achieving peace and prosperity of human civilisation.

Board of Directors

Office Bearers

Dr Emir Hadzikadunic

Senior Research Fellow

Dr Emir Hadzikadunic is a former Ambassador of Bosnia & Herzegovina to Malaysia.He holds a PhD in International Relations from the International University of Sarajevo. His extensive experience in international relations and foreign policy includes professional service as Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the Islamic Republic of Iran (2010-2013) and Malaysia (2016-ongoing), lecturing and guest-lecturing at the International University of Sarajevo and other universities in South East Europe, Malaysia and Singapore. He has written for academic journals and media outlets, authored two books, and co-authored other publications. Throughout his professional career, he has also conducted consultancy work for EU, UNDP, OSCE and USAID during their peace building missions in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Osman Softic

Senior Research Fellow

Osman Softic graduated from the Faculty of Islamic studies, University of Sarajevo and obtained masters degree in international relations from the University of New South Wales. He was named ambassador for peace by the Universal peace federation and served as secretary of the Islamic council of NSW in Sydney. His career spans business and corporate sector, academic research, journalism and charitable work. He was selected to serve on Gift Fund committee with Together for Humanity Foundation in Australia. He later worked as office manager for CEO of Bosna Bank International where he coordinated Sarajevo business forum and as a research associate for Bosniak academy of science and the arts (BANU). In addition, he worked as vice president for student services at American University in Bosnia and Herzegovina (AUBiH). His research is focused on intra Muslim discourse, Middle East politics, Islam in Southeast Asia, democratization and post Islamism. He contributed articles to various online publications such as Al Jazeera Balkans, Online Opinion, PIS Journal of politics and international studies of Ibn Sina Institute.

Nageeb Gounjaria

Senior Research Fellow

Nageeb Gounjaria has a Bachelor degree in Philosophy (minor in Islamic Studies) from the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM) and a Master degree in Philosophy from the National University of Singapore (NUS). As the Learning and Development Director at Bijak Institute of Philosophy Indonesia (BIPI), he teaches critical thinking to children and adults to help them improve their life and future prospects. He is also a writer and curriculum developer, besides his role as editor-in-chief at Bijak Publishing.

Dr Hamdan Mohd Razali

Research Fellow

Hamdan Mohd Razali is a PhD scholar in Political Science from Universiti Sains Malaysia. He started his career in 2005 with the Malaysian Institute of Information Technology, Universiti Kuala Lumpur, and later joined Universiti Teknologi MARA, Terengganu Branch in 2007. He has keen interest in electoral studies, social movement, and political Islam. His writings appeared in several journals, books, and also newspaper columns.

Marilyn Ong Siew AI

Research Fellow

Marilyn Ong Siew Ai began her professional career as a corporate lawyer in the High Court of Malaya. When she joined the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM), she finally found her vocation in the multidisciplinary fields of law, business, and society. She lectured the undergraduate courses Business Law, Corporate Governance & Ethics and Investment Law and the postgraduate Corporate Master of Business Administration course, Law for Managers, in the Faculty of Economics & Business, University Sarawak Malaysia. She was appointed Founding President, Association of Business Scholars, East Malaysia, Founding Managing Editor, Journal of Business & Society, and as Research Leader, Corporate Governance Research Group. She is also active in social entrepreneurship & indigenous community development work.

Anggita Dini

Research Fellow

Anggita Dini is the executive director of Bijak Institute of Philosophy Indonesia (BIPI). She has an MA in Applied Linguistics from the Yogyakarta State University, Indonesia. A passionate advocate of reflective education, she trains teachers to teach the Indonesian, Singapore, and Cambridge curricula to kindergarten, primary and secondary school students. Anggita previously managed the academic division of a Singapore education franchise in Jakarta. She is currently involved in publishing across a range of multimedia (website, digital, and print) for educational institutions and legal firms, besides training children in critical thinking.

Ahmad Muziru Idham

Program Officer

Ahmad Muziru Idham is a graduate of International Studies at the Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) and holds a Master degree from Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) in International Relations. He was the Secretary General of Unimas Science Social Society for the academic year of 2013/2014. He also maintains a keen interest in international relations, politics, civil society and human rights.

Dr Fuad Nurhadi


Fuad Nurhadi is an MBBS graduate from Monash University and currently a Medical Officer at University Malaya Medical Centre. He maintains a keen interest in leadership and neuroscience and has attended multiple conferences pursuant to the role of youth empowerment in the cultivation of leaders.

Lizawati Mohamed Hassan

Internal Auditor

people-lizawati Lizawati Hassan holds a Degree in Science and System Management from the National University of Malaysia. She has wide experience in managing accounts for the Asian Renaissance project under the Institute for Policy Research and Sasakawa Foundation and also School of Politicians under Konrad Adenuer Stiftung.

Dr Ahmad Nabil Amir

Head, Abduh Study Group

Ahmad Nabil Amir holds an M.A. from the International Islamic University of Malaysia (IIUM) and a PhD from Universiti Malaya in Usuluddin. He has written extensively on the political thought of Islamic revivalists and is at present translating Muhammad Asad’s magnum opus, The Message of the Qur’an, while pursuing his post-doctoral studies.

Abdul Rahman Sayuti

Research Fellow, Abduh Study Group

Abdul Rahman Sayuti is a Hāfiz, graduated from Ma’ahad Tahfiz Al-Qur’ān Hira’. He obtained a Diploma in Arabic Language from the International University of Africa, Khartoum, Sudan before pursuing his study in Dirasat Islamiyyah at Al-Imān University, Sana’a, Yemen. He obtained a Bachelor Degree in Syari’a & Law from the International Islamic University Sultan Abdul Halim Mu’adzzam Shah (UniSHAMS) Kedah Dārul Aman.

Mohd Syazreen Abdulllah

Research Fellow, Abduh Study Group

Mohd Syazreen Abdullah is a Hāfiz, graduated from Ma’ahad Tahfiz Al-Qur’ān, Dārul Qur’ān, JAKIM. He obtained a Bachelor Degree in Usūluddin from University of Yarmouk, Jordan, and a Master from University of Malaya. He is also the founder of TRADISI, an Irfān Research Centre focusing on Islamic Philosophy and Irfān.

Contact Us
Islamic Renaissance Front
26th Floor Menara Maxis, Kuala Lumpur City Centre, 50088 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Phone: +603-2615-7919
Fax: +603-2615-2699
Updated version: 2.39-20231022