Better a just non-Muslim than a ‘Muslim’ tyrant, says group
August 10, 2012

Aug 10: Muslim youth group Islamic Renaissance Front has slammed the UMNO media’s adaptation of a so-called ‘fatwa’ which claims that it is haram (forbidden) for Muslims to vote for DAP.

IRF said such a view was contrary to the spirit of Islam, and said Islam values a leader by his or her character and commitment to justice.

“A just non-Muslim is more worthy of being a leader than an unjust Muslim. This notion is based on the one of most important principles in the religion of Islam that supporting a corrupt and despotic leader although he is of the same race and religion is tantamount to support injustice, when injustice is the main enemy of Islamic law,” IRF director Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa (right) told Harakahdaily in a statement.

Farouk said he found no contradiction between DAP’s vision and Islam’s aspiration for a just society.

“The great Muslim reformer from Syria, Abd al-Rahman al-Kawakibi (1854 – 1902), held the opinion that since oppression and despotism are contrary to Islam, a just non-Muslim ruler is preferred to a tyrannical Muslim leader,” he explained.

He said it was worrying that some quarters considered a wrongdoing by a Muslim to be better “than the righteousness of a non-Muslim”.

“What is tragically ironic about this campaign against DAP is that it is being spewed by members of a party whose own leader is busy talking about the importance of Wasatiyah or a moderate approach to religion. This also explains his ambivalence with regards to the Hudud penal code or an Islamic state which has somehow been left unquestioned in these polemics,” said the statement, referring to prime minister and UMNO president Najib Razak.

Since Wednesday, UMNO mouthpiece Utusan Malaysia has been highlighting the so-called ‘fatwa’ issued by a pro-UMNO Muslim leader in Kelantan, in what is seen as an eleventh hour pre-election move.

IRF also rapped UMNO-linked individuals such as its ‘young ulama’ chief Fathul Bari Mat Jahaya for his defence of MCA and support of the fatwa condemning DAP, but added the move was not surprising since his ilks had “expressed disdain for democracy altogether”.

“The fact that MCA has on numerous occasions came out in opposition to the Hudud had somehow escaped Fahul Bari’s memory or attention. At best, he is ignorant of recent events in Malaysian current affairs,” it stressed, and reminded that Fathul Bari had even argued in an article in Utusan Malaysia that Prophet Muhammad was racist.

“It is an old strategy in the fascist book of tricks: to dehumanize the other, to relegate and reduce their individuality into racial labels and to render their hopes, fears and vulnerabilities invisible: in other words, to oppress. What is worst: passages from the holy Qur’an are evoked in the process for justification.”

(This report was originally published by Harakah Daily.)

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Updated version: 2.39-20231022