Saturday, May 3, 2008

Perak govt under fire over tampering denial - The Star

IPOH: May 3, 2008

The state government has come under fire for denying that it had tampered with the reshuffling of imams and members of mosque committees in the state.

Parit Umno division chief Datuk Zaim Abu Hassan called the state government a “liar” after Perak Mentri Besar’s political secretary Misbahul Munir Masduki issued a statement claiming that reshuffling had not taken place.

The statement, published on Thursday, said the state was merely cross-checking the names of the mosque committee members as there had been political overtones in their appointments made by the previous state administration.

“Stop acting out sandiwara (dramas). Do not pretend and tell lies.

“From what we know at ground level, those from PAS and Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) have already met with the current mosque committee chairmen and told them that there would be changes in the line-ups involving the imams and the committee members.

“This is probably happening all over the state,” he told a press conference here yesterday.

Zaim, who was formerly the state executive council chairman for Islamic Education, Youth and Sports, said the government had undermined the authority of the royal institution by taking matters into its own hands.

“Any changes in the mosque committees have always been done by first getting verification from the penghulu mukim and the Orang Besar Jajahan before they are forwarded to the Perak Malay Customs and Religious Council which the Regent of Perak chairs,” he said.

Zaim also said that reshuffling the committees might cause a rift among the parishes and communities.

On allegations of “political intrusion”, Zaim said: “Surely, everything has to move in accordance with the government of the day.”

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