Lest you missed it…Emerging Discourse..on ‘How Islamist Democrats would mitigate Extremism and Bigotry’.

Don’t use fatwas as ‘backdoor’ to force Islamic law on public, PAS leader tells authorities
PAS’s Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said Islamic authorities must not use fatwas or religious edicts to implement religious laws without prior consultation. — Picture by Saw Siow Feng

PAS’s Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said Islamic authorities must not use fatwas or religious edicts to implement religious laws without prior consultation. — Picture by Saw Siow FengKUALA LUMPUR, Nov 13 —

Islamic authorities must avoid using fatwas or religious edicts to covertly implement religious principles or laws without prior consultation or discussion, PAS’s Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said today.

The PAS Research Centre chief executive said clerics and Islamists must adhere to the norms of democracy by engaging the public, rather than foisting their principles on Muslims and even non-Muslims who are increasingly suspicious of the authorities.

“No Islamic principles, however important, should be implemented by some form of backdoor implementations. That means, by way of fatwa,” Dzulkefly said in a roundtable discussion on “Democrat Islamists”, referring to the Islamic religious edict.

“And fatwa, as you know very well, are not voted on by representatives that are elected. That presents a problem.”

Fatwas are religious edicts issued by Islamic clerics on a multitude of issues. Although these are advisory in nature, Malaysia occasionally gazettes some into law.

Dzulkefly added that he does not agree that a fatwa is beyond challenge, saying that even PAS has contested such edicts before.

Speaking in the discussion organised by the Global Movement of Moderates Malaysia, Dzulkefly insisted that an Islamist must be able to engage the public, be less judgmental towards others, and tolerate differing opinions.

Failure to do these, Dzulkefly said, will cause Muslim community to “retrogress” into a doctrine of “takfiri”, in which one can easily declare others as unbelievers or infidels.

Besides the PAS representative, other guests in the discussion were Dr Anis Matta, the president of Indonesia’s Prosperous Justice Party (PKS); Dr Azzam Tamimi, chief editor of Alhiwar Arabic TV channel; and Dr Driss Bouanou, a member of Morocco’s Justice and Development Party (PJD).

“It is better and nicer if the fatwa and religious bodies can see this discussion and forum as inputs for them to examine and consider,” said Dzulkefly, explaining that these dialogues should not be seen as challenging their authorities.

“These are the engagement, democratic process of arriving to the stage where fatwa can be decreed … . The public can no longer accept the authorities through force and repression.”

Earlier this week, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said that any religious edict, or fatwa, issued by Islamic scholars must consider the realities of the current times and be thoroughly debated first.

The former prime minister also said nobody should declare that only their interpretation of the Islamic scriptures are correct and unquestionable, pointing out that many scholars have made irrelevant interpretations before.

Muslim women’s group Sisters in Islam (SIS) has caused a backlash in the past weeks for mounting a constitutional challenge against a Selangor fatwa declaring those “professing” liberalism and religious pluralism as “deviants”.

– See more at: http://www.themalaymailonline.com/malaysia/article/dont-use-fatwas-as-backdoor-to-force-islamic-law-on-public-pas-leader-tells#sthash.j9vmD3l3.dpuf

Look beyond moral issues, Malaysian Islamists told
Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad stresses a point at the 'Democrat Islamists' roundtable discussion in Kuala Lumpur, today. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Raiezal, November 13, 2014.
Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad stresses a point at the ‘Democrat Islamists’ roundtable discussion in Kuala Lumpur, today. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Raiezal, November 13, 2014.

Islamists in Malaysia must be able to provide solutions to problems that concern the running of the country’s economy and people’s welfare, rather than focusing on moral issues, PAS Research Centre executive director Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said.

Islamists, or those who want to see Islam applied in all spheres of life, must have answers to problems of economic inequality, mismanagement of national finances, and must resolve corruption and leakages, he said.

They also must be willing to participate in a contest for ideas and solutions, instead of only claiming to represent God or the religion, Dzulkefly added.

“They must be willing to advocate all their principles and program in political contestation whether at the end of the day they would be accepted or rejected,” he told a roundtable discussion on “Democrat Islamists” organised by the Global Movement of Moderates (GMM) and the International Islamic University Malaysia (IIUM).

“The challenge of Islamists is to present their political messaging in a manner that can convince and persuade the Muslim and non-Muslim constituencies,” he said.

To do so, Dzulkefly said Islamists should be more engaging, less judgmental, allow for differences of opinion and be able to manage dissent.

Participants at the 'Democrat Islamists' roundtable discussion in Kuala Lumpur, today. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Raiezal, November 13, 2014.

Participants at the ‘Democrat Islamists’ roundtable discussion in Kuala Lumpur, today. – The Malaysian Insider pic by Afif Raiezal, November 13, 2014.

It was not so much the question of whether democracy and Islam were compatible as this issue had already been settled, he said.

Rather, Islamists have to engage “as critical political players in nation-rebuilding and human civilization”.

It is by being part of such discussions with others of different views and religions that “makes us democratic”, he added.

“Islamists must learn to present Islamic principles on issue of governance and present it in a democratic, persuasive manner.

It would also be good for religious bodies like the fatwa council to adopt a similar approach, so that all details of an issue could be studied before any decree is issued.

“This approach is a democratic process in arriving at a sound judgement for fatwa. Fatwa need to undergo this kind of process especially in today’s society that cannot simply accept orders,” Dzulkefly said.

GMM chief executive officer Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah said the objective of the roundtable discussion was to analyse Islamic political discourse and to study the contribution of democrat Islamists as a way to promote moderation and to fight extremism.

“There is a need for Muslim world to embrace politics and governance that really represents Islam,” Saifuddin said.

The roundtable discussion is also preparation for an international conference to be held in the first quarter of next year.

Representative from IIUM’s Strata Research & Department of Fiqh, Dr Maszlee Malik, added that discussions like these were important as the world grappled with religious extremism.

“Islamic democracy is one of the remedies to the current situation and democrat Islamists believe there is still room for change within the framework of democracy, they strongly believe the Quran’s democratic system is compatible with Islamic values provided they are given a fair playing field.”

“This session is trying to give the opportunity for the democrat islamists to present their case, share their vision, and to furnish the world with the hope to reduce the phenomena of extremism,” Maszlee said.

Also present during the roundtable session were Dr Azzam Tamimi from Al-Hiwar TV; Dr Driss Bouanou, member of the International Relations Committee (Middle East and Asia region), Party of Justice and Development, Morocco; and Dr Anis Matta, president of Prosperous Justice Party, Indonesia. – November 13, 2014.

Demokrat Islam boleh selesaikan fahaman pelampau dunia

Demokrat Islam boleh selesaikan fahaman pelampau dunia

Demokrat Islam boleh menjadi penyelesaian kepada membendung fahaman pelampau di seluruh dunia kerana mereka membawa pendekatan sederhana dalam dunia masa kini menerusi peti undi, kata ahli akademik dan ahli politik.

Pensyarah Universiti Islam Antarabangsa Malaysia (UIAM) Dr Maszlee Malik (gambar) berkata Demokrat Islam, yang menjadi terkenal selepas peristiwa ‘Arab Spring’, membenarkan umat Islam untuk mengawal nasib mereka melalui peti undi dan bukannya perang atau di tangan pemimpin diktator, sekali gus menamatkan rasa tidak puas hati mereka.

“Idea mengenai Demokrat Islam wujud sejak sekian lama. Kumpulan radikal muncul kerana mereka mendapati tiadanya harapan bagi umat Islam untuk menikmati keadilan, hak asasi manusia dan tadbir urus yang baik,” katanya pada perbincangan meja bulat mengenai Demokrat Islam anjuran Pergerakan Kesederhanaan Global (GMM) bersama-sama dengan Jabatan Fiqh UIAM, hari ini.

Pengerusi saluran TV Al-Hiwar yang berpejabat di London, Dr Azzam Tamimi, pula berkata ‘Arab Spring’ merupakan peristiwa yang membenarkan demokrasi dilaksanakan di Timur Tengah, dan pada masa sama menjadikan kumpulan militan Al Qaeda sebagai pergerakan yang tidak relevan.

“Kejayaan ‘Arab Spring’ seperti yang kita lihat di Tunisia dan Mesir adalah amat menyakinkan, menunjukkan  ini adalah jalan ke hadapan.

Beberapa pemimpin Al Qaeda sebenarnya bimbang, jika model ini berjaya, ia membuktikan mereka sebenarnya salah,”katanya.

Sambil menekankan definisi Demokrat Islam masih berbeza-beza dan bergantung kepada bagaimana orang berhubung dengan ideologi itu, Dr Azzam berkata perjuangan untuk Demokrat Islam di Timur Tengah masih berterusan.

GMM, dalam laman webnya, menyatakan Demokrat Islam adalah istilah khas yang merujuk kepada pemain baharu yang mahu menggunakan pendekatan prinsip-prinsip Islam dalam dasar awam yang merangkumi rangka kerja demokratik termasuk di Maghribi dan Tunisia.

Sementara itu, Pengarah Eksekutif Pusat Penyelidikan PAS Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad berkata walaupun orang Barat agak berwaspada dengan ideologi itu, Demokrat Islam seperti PAS berjaya wujud selama 60 tahun di Malaysia.

Namun, katanya Demokrat Islam meghadapi masalah untuk menyeimbangkan antara menjadi demokratik dan menegakkan nilai-nilai Islam sebenar dalam usaha menjadi relevan dalam negara yang pelbagai seperti Malaysia.

“Parti Demokrat Islam perlu tampil dengan cadangan universal yang boleh menyakinkan rakyat, iaitu orang Islam dan bukan Islam. Oleh itu, ia perlu melibatkan diri dengan orang awam, membenarkan adanya forum perbezaan dan kurang membuat pertimbangan,” katanya.

Anggota Jawatankuasa Perhubungan Antarabangsa Parti Keadilan dan Pembangunan (PJD) Maghribi, Dr Driss Bouanou, pula membangkitkan mengenai kejayaan Demokrat Islam di negara itu kerana Maghribi mengamalkan demokrasi sejak penubuhannya.

Beliau berkata memandangkan Maghribi sebuah negara demokratik, ia tidak terjejas dengan ‘Arab Spring’.

“Kita berjaya menjalinkan kerjasama baik dengan pemerintahan beraja dan musuh politik kami untuk mengekalkan kemakmuran Maghribi.

“Bagi apa yang  kami capai di Maghribi, tiada siapa yang boleh membuat tuduhan  Demokrat Islam tidak wujud,” katanya sambil merujuk kepada PJD, parti pemerintah Maghribi.

Sementara itu, Presiden Parti Keadilan Sejahtera Indonesia Dr Anis Matta berkata walaupun negara-negara Barat kelihatan sinis terhadap kewujudan Demokrat Islam, mereka sebenarnya lebih bimbang jika Demokrat Islam boleh menjejaskan kepentingan mereka di negara-negara Islam. – Bernama, 13 November, 2014.

2 thoughts on “Lest you missed it…Emerging Discourse..on ‘How Islamist Democrats would mitigate Extremism and Bigotry’.

  1. For all those, especially all the Umno dorky and schmucks, advocating that Islamic laws be implemented in Malaysia don’t forget to have all the haram activities be banned from this country. You can’t choose which are the haram activities are allowed especially those that are generating taxes to keep this country floating. Without them where will Malaysia be ?
    Therefore should the people who are keeping the country afloat be appreciated and most of all don’t kill all those that are laying the golden eggs ! Where will Malaysia be without them ?

  2. Why is it that always around the same times when the Umno is meeting all the Umno extremists will come up with all sorts of extremisms. Najib was waving the Keris and so did his half breed cousin. And now you have one who says the Malays are the masters race and that all the other races must emulate the Malays, to be patient and tolerant.
    Can I ask if this ultra knows the meaning of being patient and tolerant ? To begin with no one in this country, except the Orang Asli in Malaya and the Head Hunters in East Malaysia, are the real master race and sons of the soil. Sad to say they were being bullied into a second class races and calling their lands as Tanah Melayu from these intruders, you can these intruders as master race ? Best to call these intruders as bullies.

    One of them even call to exclude MCA out of the coalition since MCA is no longer supported by the Chinese. Please have MCA and Gerakan excluded from the coalition and also all the other junior partners too. This individual is talking through the back end of his body, does he know without all these junior partners all the Umno dorky and schmucks will not be tenants in Putrajaya long ago and please insist that these junior partners be excluded in the coalition. You will be doing millions of voters the biggest favour the voters have been advocating for a long time and that has been what they are asking for. And most important of all this individual and all the Umno dorky and schmucks will be in the poor houses or better still in jails.

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