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S'gor exco willing to risk political career over unilateral conversion
Published:  Aug 10, 2019 2:45 PM
Updated: 6:55 AM

Selangor exco V Ganabatirau (photo, above) said he is prepared to put his political career on the line with regard to the issue of unilateral child conversion.

This comes after Ganabatirau and four other non-Muslim exco members met with the Selangor ruler.

While the non-Muslim Selangor exco members have been tight-lipped about what they had discussed with the Selangor ruler, Ganabatirau shared a picture of the meeting with the caption "My stand is crystal clear on (the) conversion issue".

"Justice and fairness (does) not belong to (a) particular religion or race but for all humans and without bias. (The) supreme religion is humanity with justice, fairness and love for all.

"Even if it's going to end my political career, I'll stand by with my principles," he said in a Facebook post.

Sources told Malaysiakini that Selangor assemblypersons were briefed about the meeting with Selangor ruler who was sympathetic about issues surrounding the amendment and acknowledged its complexities.

The issue had turned into a political crisis after Selangor Menteri Besar Amirudin Shari went ahead and tried to table the amendment, which originated from the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (Mais), despite objections from the majority of Pakatan Harapan assemblypersons.

The assemblypersons had advised Amirudin to go back to the Selangor Sultan and explain the situation as tabling the amendment could backfire on Harapan.

However, Amirudin submitted the amendment to Selangor speaker Ng Suee Lim, who reportedly refused to prioritise the amendment and subsequently cut short the Selangor state assembly sitting.

Ng had denied that his move was motivated by the unilateral conversion bill but the manoeuvring ultimately stalled the amendment.

Following this, the four state exco members sought the audience with the Selangor ruler on Thursday followed by a meeting with Selangor Pakatan Harapan leadears later that day.

After the meeting, Amirudin for the first time publicly acknowledged the unilateral conversion bill.

He said the bill may be tabled in future "if needed" but noted the many arguments against the move.

"The arguments were legalistic in nature and touched many aspects. So that's why I think there is a good reason for us to look at the proposed amendments again.

"Everyone was divided so there is wisdom for us to postpone, in the view of the speaker," he said.

At present, the Selangor enactment reads that those below 18 must obtain the consent of the "mother and father" before embracing Islam. The amendment seeks to change this to "mother or father."

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