Gov't lifts ban on printing of Malay Bibles


Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Idris Jala has today revealed a 10-point solution to the Bible controversy.

Christians groups are allowed to import the Bibles in all languages, including Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia without restriction.

These Bibles can also be printed locally in Peninsula Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak, he said.

While there is no requirement for the Bibles in Sabah and Sarawak for any stamp or serial number, those in Peninsula Malaysia must have the words Christian Publication and the cross sign printed on the front covers.

I hope this 10-point solution will be received positively by the Christian groups as being fair and reasonable. We have to look for a solution that deals with the Bible issues and also put a way forward to handle other issues raised by the Christian groups, said Idris.

He conceded that the government and the civil servants are not perfect as indeed all human beings are ‘beautifully imperfect’ in the eyes of God.

"And for all our shortcomings in handling the Bible issue, I hope the Christians would find it in their hearts to forgive us.
Below is the full statement by Idris:

The government confirmed that it has been in dialogue with the Christian groups to look into their specific requests on the Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia Bible and also other religious issues. Taking into account the polarity of views of the different religious groups, including the Muslims, the government decided on a 10-point solution.

  1. Bibles in all languages can be imported into the country, including Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia.

  2. These Bibles can also be printed locally in Peninsula Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak. This is a new development which should be welcomed by the Christian groups.

  3. Bibles in indigenous languages of Sabah and Sarawak such as Iban, Kadazan-Dusun and Lun Bawang can also be printed locally and imported.

  4. For Sabah and Sarawak, in recognition of the large Christian community in these states, there are no conditions attached to the importation and local printing of the Bibles in all languages, including Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia and indigenous languages. There is no requirement for any stamp or serial number.

  5. Taking into account the interest of the larger Muslim community for Peninsula Malaysia, Bibles in Bahasa Malaysia/Indonesia, imported or printed, must have the words Christian Publication and the cross sign printed on the front covers.

  6. In the spirit of 1Malaysia and recognising that many people travel between Sabah and Sarawak and Peninsula Malaysia, there should be no prohibitions and restrictions for people who bring along their Bibles and Christian materials on such travel.

  7. A directive on the Bible has been issued by the ketua setiausaha (KSU) of the Home Ministry to ensure proper implementation of this cabinet decision. Failure to comply will subject the officers to disciplinary action under the General Orders. A comprehensive briefing by top officials, including the attorney-general (AG), will be given to all relevant civil servants to ensure good understanding and proper implementation of the directive.

  8. For the impounded Bibles in Kuching, Gideon, the importer can collect all the 30,000 Bibles free of charge. We undertake to ensure the parties involved are reimbursed. The same offer remains available for the importer of the 5,100 Bibles in Port Klang, which have already been collected by the Bible Society Malaysia (BSM) last week.

  9. Beyond the Bible issue, the government wishes to reiterate its commitment to work with the Christian groups and all the different religious groups in order to address inter religious issues and work towards the fulfilment of all religious aspirations in accordance with the constitution, taking into account the other relevant laws of the country. In order to bring urgency to this work, the prime minister will meet the representatives of the Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) soon to discuss the way forward.

  10. The Christian ministers in the cabinet will meet on a regular basis with representatives of the various Christian groups in order to discuss their issues and work with the relevant ministries and PM in order to resolve them.

The coming 10th Sarawak election sure does wonder…we should have more elections to get into the thick skull of the politicians.

Source … finalised/

KUALA LUMPUR, April 4 The 10-point solution announced by Putrajaya on Saturday to placate Christians unhappy with the governments restrictions on Malay bibles has yet to be finalised, the home minister has said.

Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein said today that talks on the Alkitab issue were still ongoing, just two days after Datuk Seri Idris Jala assured Christians that a compromise formula had been decided upon by Cabinet.

Were still in the middle of negotiations. Nothing is finalised yet, Hishammuddin told The Malaysian Insider.

He stressed that the government was taking a fair and reasonable step-by-step approach to address the Malay bibles issue, pointing out that nothing will get resolved if Christians and Muslims get bogged down by details.

The main thing is that we have to move forward… in a reasonable, non-polemic way, he said.

Hishammuddin (picture) also declined to comment on Perak Mufti Tan Sri Harussani Zakarias challenge to Putrajaya to abolish Islamic laws on the use of Allah after the government said it would allow Christians to freely distribute Malay bibles across the country.

Harussani told The Malaysian Insider yesterday that the Cabinet decision contravened the Control and Restriction of the Propagation of Non-Islamic Religions Enactment, which bars non-Muslims from using Allah to refer to God in all states except Sabah, Sarawak, Penang and the federal territories.

If the enactment already bans it at the national level, on what basis do we allow it? Is the enactment abolished automatically? the mufti had said.

If the government does this, just cancel the law. I feel disappointed with the government as the law already says it cannot be allowed.

Hishammuddin, however, said there was no point speculating on what will happen later, stressing the need to focus on ongoing talks first.

Let the negotiations go through. Lets see what is the final outcome and then we work from there, he said.

The Cabinet over the weekend put out a new list of suggestions to put an end to the month-long standoff over the use of Malay bibles in an apparent bid to head off a possible Christian backlash against Barisan Nasional (BN) in Sarawak ahead of state polls on April 16.

Nearly half the states one million population is Christian.

In a media statement, Jala spelled out the governments 10-point formula to pacify Christians without incurring the anger of the majority Muslims over the religious controversy.

However, he made no mention of the word Allah, which both Christians and Muslims view as being the crux of the Alkitab row.

Jala also said the Cabinets decision will be gazetted through the Home Ministrys secretary-general to ensure that the order is carried out and action will be taken against officials who breach these directives.

He added that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak will meet the Christian Federation of Malaysia (CFM) which represents 90 per cent of all churches in Malaysia to look for a way forward on outstanding religious issues beyond the Bible row.

Because of THEM! … hristians/


mm… oh my… PEMBELA do know how to trigger the flame… the Christians never interfered in anyone’s belief and religion except to worship in peace and freedom before… and now? I see… so the other side started to felt threaten… and so they decided to ‘scratch’ our back… while in the same time ask for support during election… blimey, I guess they never played any games before… as one scratch another… the other scratch them back… with fork… bloody hell :wink:

Why waited for so long to come up with the solutions???
Why only now when the election is so near that they lifted the ban???
Another political gimmicks… think about it.

if malay have freedom then it will be worldwide news

after election and if BN still in power, sure got issues again.

gomen is so good…we almost at 18th century now