In Pursuit of a Peaceful, Tolerant, Moderate, Multi-Racial Malaysia,
Through Compassion, Mercy, Justice, Democracy 

G25 Malaysia

G25 is a group of influential Malays, and as a civil society organisation, we are able to play a constructive role as the voice of moderation on religion. G25 comprises a group of individuals, rich with experience in various fields with diverse views but a common goal and common vision. 

Latest News

Make Rukunegara Constitution's preamble

The Rukunegara should be made the Preamble (Muqadimmah) to the Malaysian Constitution. There are seven compelling reasons for suggesting this. ONE, the objectives of the Rukunegara are linked to values which are perennial — values such as unity, justice and freedom. Preambles of most constitutions embody this timeless quality since they are meant to serve people beyond the present. TWO, the objectives and the principles of the Rukunegara are inclusive. They transcend gender, ethnicity, religion and region. This is what makes the Rukunegara, potentially, a force for unity in a diverse society. THREE, the Rukunegara commands a high degree of legitimacy. All its principles and objectives resona

Ban cash donations from foreign sources, suggests committee

Foreign sources should be banned from making cash donations to political parties and politicians, while firms that receive government contracts should be prohibited from making any kind of political contributions. These were among 32 recommendations made by the national consultative committee on political financing in its political financing report. The report was unveiled by the committee’s chairperson, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Paul Low at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today. The report said “foreign sources” include individuals, companies, foundations, organisations, associations or any registered or non-registered entities that are not domiciled in Malaysia. Howeve

Nazir: Moderation book a voice for the silent majority

PETALING JAYA: This is the full text of CIMB Group chairman Datuk Seri Nazir Razak’s speech at the launch of the Moderation book. Assalamualaikum and good afternoon. When Chun Wai asked me to launch a book about moderation, I had to agree instantly because I’m a huge fan of The Star's campaign to promote moderation. I must confess though that after I got a copy of the book “Moderation” and saw that 28 leading lights had penned their opinions on moderation, I wondered why I wasn't chosen to contribute. Maybe I was number 29 on Chun Wai’s list of moderates so I only get to launch the book. How this really came about, only Chun Wai knows. But with all sincerity, thank you. I’m extremely gratefu

Ex-judge: AG has duty to ensure independent Bar

KUALA LUMPUR: A retired judge said it is the duty of Attorney-General Mohamed Apandi Ali to ensure that the Malaysian Bar is independent. Mohd Hishamudin Md Yunus, however, said it was tragic to witness today an A-G that was doing exactly the opposite to emasculate the Bar. “It is the solemn and noble duty to protect and promote the interest and, importantly, the independence of the Bar,” said Hishamudin at a public forum yesterday on the proposed amendments to the Legal Profession Act (LPA) 1976. He said the AG who is the guardian of public interest was suppose to ensure all branches of government respected the Federal Constitution and the rule of law. “He should perform this constitutional

A Preamble for our Constitution

THE United Nations lists 190 sovereign states. Most of them possess codified and specially drafted constitutional charters. Most Constitutions dazzle the reader with an inspiring opening, visionary statement called a Preamble. A Preamble is a mission statement. It expresses the fundamental values and aspirations of the people. It explains the charter’s purpose and underlying philosophy. It outlines the nature of the system and the foundational legacy of the forefathers. It seeks to bind the citizenry into a united nation. Nearly 80% of the world’s Constitutions contain Preambles. Surprisingly, the Malaysian Constitution does not have any glittering, expressionary statement to encapsulate the

Perak Sultan tells religious officers to carry out duty with prudence

IPOH: The Sultan of Perak, Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah has called on religious officers to carry out their duties prudently. He said the actions of some officers who forget their courtesy, order and politeness upon being bestowed with power is not the culture in Islam. He added that rude, rough and disparaging actions by officers which could cause people to feel humiliated and disgraced should not occur. "History has proved that whether it is an organisation, institution, business or a country, when law and justice are set aside, it will affect harmony and public order. "Therefore religious officers at the forefront, especially those exposed to public evaluation, must carry out their dutie

No stopping winds of change

THE brilliant speech by Zainah Anwar at the 4th Raja Aziz Addrus Memorial Lecture is a very inspiring reminder of the hard struggle facing women in Malaysia and other Muslim countries in their desire for justice in Islam. Despite decades of advocacy, Muslim women are still facing strong resistance from the religious authority for the changes that will give them the same rights and freedom that their counterparts from other races enjoy in society and under the law. I entirely agree with Zainah Anwar that if there is strong political will, we can have the same reforms to protect women and girls from abuse under outdated shariah laws which other countries have amended to bring Islamic justice f

In Search of Common Ground: Reconciling Religion and Human Rights

Ladies and gentlemen, I am really honoured to be standing here today to give the 4th Raja Aziz Addruse Memorial Lecture. Thank you to the Bar Council and Steven Thiru for this brave invitation. I give talks and lectures all over the world, but it is not often that I get invited to give such a public lecture to a big and particularly important audience in Malaysia. So thank you for this honour, not least because it is in the name of a man I have always admired, the late Raja Aziz Addruse - a man of integrity and honour, a man who upheld the rule of law, who was passionate about human rights, who had the courage of his convictions. And not least, a man who believed that no matter how tough th

Important to allay public’s concerns about Taman Tugu

It was just recently, on a beautiful Sunday morning, that a whole lot of Kuala Lumpur residents came together to protest the fact that Taman Rimba Kiara in Taman Tun Dr Ismail would be replaced by yet another condominium project. The park is a green lung that is enjoyed not only by the neighbourhood’s residents but also nearby communities. It is home to 43 species of birds. Families enjoy the space on weekends while elegant garden party weddings have been held there too. While awaiting a decision on the project, we were pleasantly surprised when it was announced that the area surrounding Tugu Negara near the Kuala Lumpur city centre would be turned into a central park to be named Taman Tugu.

Agama tanpa faham etika, punca umat Islam mendahului masalah sosial

PETALING JAYA: Pendidikan agama tanpa pemahaman betul mengenai nilai dan falsafah moral di sebaliknya tidak mampu menangani seks di luar nikah di kalangan pasangan Islam, menurut seorang aktivis. Dr Ahmad Farouk Musa, yang mengepelai Islamic Renaissance Front, berkata sekiranya pendidikan agama dijadikan ukuran, bilangan anak luar nikah di kalangan pasangan Islam secara logiknya lebih rendah daripada bukan Islam. “Saya tidak ada statistik semasa, tetapi pada 2012, lebih 50% daripada anak luar nikah adalah keturunan Melayu. “Jika dilihat kurikulum sekolah, murid Islam sudah pun mengikuti pendidikan Islam sementara bukan Islam pendidikan moral,” katanya kepada FMT. Beliau mengulas laporan Beri

Can liberalism save Malaysia?

IT is amazing how some people react negatively to the word “liberalism” these days. The reactions are very different from the time when Tunku Abdul Rahman declared the independence of Malaya and the formation of Malaysia. The Tunku proclaimed liberty as the ideal that founded this nation, but this word is not well understood by some quarters today. On Aug 31, 1957, Tunku Abdul Rahman read out the Proclamation of Independence that confidently claimed this nation will “be for ever a sovereign democratic and independent State founded upon the principles of liberty and justice and ever seeking the welfare and happiness of its people ...” The same phrase was repeated in the Proclamation of Malays

Moderates Must Speak Up

Historians have noted that it took only a few evil men to use the ideology of hate and the promise of eternal glory to justify the atrocities that killed millions of people in Europe and in Asia during the last world war. The majority of the population were good people and totally innocent of the crimes but by their silence, they allowed the atrocities to happen on such an unprecedented scale. Years after the war, and even today, people are still asking how such state - sponsored terror could have happened in the twentieth century. The young of today feel ashamed and disgusted that the previous generation did not do anything to stop the madness before their countries were plunged into war, w

The Muslim legal dilemma

SEPT 12 — Without doubt any serious and committed Muslim will acknowledge that he should obey the injunctions and teachings of Allah even though he may, due to various reasons, omit to follow them all the time. A Muslim who reads the Quran knows that there are many techniques, values and lifestyles taught in the Quran that may guide him to be a compassionate, efficient, useful and thinking human being. The grey area and debate arises in how the Quran is interpreted, especially when sources extraneous to the Quran are used, for example, the Sunnah, the views of the so-called companions of the Prophet, and the views of religious scholars to interpret the Quran. We must also acknowledge that th

Press for more open dialogues

THE statement made by the Perak mufti that the giant replica of the Langkawi eagle on the island is un-Islamic, implying that it should be pulled down, is yet another case of religious extremism making inroads into the cultural and recreational life of the country, creating fears that the conservative wings among the ulama are bent on turning back the clock on the socio-economic progress of the country. Most Malaysians are moderates and realists. They would see the giant eagle as a symbol of the tourist island’s legendary history and that it is an appropriate way of advertising Langkawi to the tourist world as a land with a mystical past. The eagle statue has become an iconic brand which has

Something worrying is happening

Sadly, Malaysians are now dealing with whether to shake hands or wish each other because we are no longer sure if it is okay. If these are not checked, we will surely lose our 'moderate' tag. IT’S the kind of stuff that Malaysians read about happening in Afghanistan, Pakistan and in some Islamic State-controlled areas in the Middle East. No one would ever have imagined that our religious leaders would call for statues, which are meant to be merely symbolic and perhaps for beautification purposes, to be demolished. And many of us shudder at the thought that these religious personalities have become so powerful that even a mere proposal or a remark – not even an edict – is seen as being suffic

Agamawan ‘jadong’ masih kuasai institusi agama Malaysia

KUALA LUMPUR: Ahli akademik, Prof Syed Farid Alatas kecewa kerana institusi agama di Malaysia masih didominasi agamawan ‘jadong’ yang sering membuat kenyataan bodoh. ‘Jadong’ adalah singkatan kepada ‘jahat, bodoh dan sombong’ yang dicipta bapanya yang juga ahli akademik dan sosiologi ternama, Prof Datuk Syed Hussein Alatas. Ketua Jabatan Pengajian Melayu Universiti Nasional Singapura itu memberi contoh pandangan agamawan mendakwa wanita tidak menutup aurat lebih berisiko dirogol yang turut menjadi tema khutbah solat Jumaat tahun lalu. “Kajian menunjukkan rogol bukan disebabkan nafsu seksual, tetapi soal kuasa. Semua perempuan, sama ada tutup aurat atau tidak, berisiko menjadi mangsa. Perogol

Mufti Arab Saudi melampau kafirkan Iran, kata bekas presiden PUM

KUALA LUMPUR: Walaupun tidak berpuas hati dengan kritikan Iran berhubung soal pengurusan haji, Mufti Besar Arab Saudi Sheikh Abdulaziz Al al-Sheikh tidak sepatutnya mengkafirkan negara itu, kata Pengerusi Sekretariat Himpunan Ulama’ Rantau Asia (Shura) Abdul Ghani Samsudin. Beliau yang juga bekas presiden Persatuan Ulama Malaysia (PUM) berkata, dunia Islam pada masa ini sepatutnya mengamalkan ‘taqrib’ iaitu mendekatkan pihak-pihak yang bertelagah. “Sepatutnya tidak sampai ke tahap itu. Masalahnya bila mudah mengkafirkan orang lain. Peserta Iran misalnya sentiasa menjadi juara pertandingan tilawah al-Quran, bagaimana senang-senang mengatakan mereka ‘bukan Islam’ dan Majusi? “Jika begitu, Pert

Getting the country back on track

I wish to thank you for publishing my interview on 4th September. However three important topics were left out which are as elaborated below. The Civil Service Over the years the Government has invested heavily on the training of civil servants. There are several PhDs now. However what is of grave concern is that lately it has been undermined. The previous Attorney General was asked to retire before his time, two MACC officers were transferred out at short notice, the head of the MACC took early retirement, the number two officer also retired and the number three officer instead of being promoted was transferred out to another department. This was unprecedented and bad for the morale wi

Against The Grain: Al-Biruni the starting point for improving Hindu-Muslim relations in Malaysia

Although Malaysia is a multicultural country whose constitution guarantees the freedom of religion for those of all faiths, recent politics have been heading in the direction of intolerance and bigotry. A case in point is the worrying trend in Hindu-Muslim relations. For more than 1,000 years, Muslims and Hindus co-existed in the Indian subcontinent. Due to the current conflicts between the two communities that often make the headlines, many assume that Hindus and Muslims have been antagonistic towards each other for centuries. While it is true that there has been a great deal of friction and conflict between the two religious communities, at the same time, the more than 1,000 years of occup

Torchbearers for founding fathers

JUST over a year and a half ago, 25 former top Malay civil servants came out of retirement “to band together as social activists”. They were alarmed at the direction in which the country was heading, says former director-general of the Public Service Department Tan Sri Alwi Jantan. He was overseas when the group published an open letter calling for consultation on the position and application of Islamic laws in Malaysia in December 2014, but he joined what is now known as G25 when he returned a month later. “Secularism, liberalism and pluralism, which are embodied in the Federal Constitution, are under attack,” he says. “We see daily occurrences of racial and religious extremism raising thei
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