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Prayer room in a non-Syariah court doesn’t make sense
Published on: Saturday, October 28, 2017

By Pro-justice
I WAS appalled to read your report that the new Native Court building in Penampang after having been delayed several years in its completion is now ready and also has a prayer room.

Prayer room for who? If it is for Muslims then why call it a native court which is primarily meant for non-Muslim natives to resolve disputes like infidelity and non-Islamic in nature.

Also, the kind of judgments delivered in native courts involve compensation in the form of pig or buffalo.

I have yet to come across any Muslim native being brought before a native court because their preferred choice would be the Syariah Court.

In this, I am reminded of the case of a certain Umno member on Beaufort who allegedly insulted the native community but also refused to appear before the native court.

I can only presume it may be because it will be against his religious principles to be fined a pig in the event he is found guilty, or even if he asked to pay the amount equivalent to the price of one.

Also he would be more comfortable appearing before the Syariah court.

Hence, even if he is the only instance of someone who would otherwise show up in the native court, for whom is the prayer room then for?

I am aware that there have been native court judges who are Muslims in the past but the cases can easily be arranged whereby it is adjourned before prayer time.

I suggest the room be utilised as a mediation room, instead, where there is hope to reconcile the parties involved in a dispute to save the court’s time.

Pro-justice

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