Tell Muslim booze merchants to give up, minister urged

(Harakah Daily) – Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Jamil Khir Baharom has been urged to remind Malay businessmen involved in the booze and gambling industry to surrender their stakes.

Making this call, Kuala Selangor member of parliament Dr Dzulkefly Ahmad said Muslim tycoons who serve as directors of such companies had no reason to continue drawing income from such businesses, unlike their working class brethrens who were forced to earn their livelihood at these places until such time the state government find them alternative jobs.

He was responding to a statement by Jamil hitting out at Selangor Exco in charge of local government Ronnie Liu.

Jamil (left) said Ronnie had insulted Islam for asking the Subang Jaya Municipal Council (MPSJ) to retract its recent ruling banning Muslims from working in liquor-serving entertainment outlets in Subang Jaya.

“The ban is enshrined in the Selangor Syariah Criminal Enactment which should not be touched by Ronnie. We are defending the morality of Muslims but certain quarters are doing the opposite,” Jamil, the minister in charge of religious affairs, was quoted as saying.

Last week, Liu sent a memo requesting MPSJ president Md Adnan Ikhsan to retract the directive, claiming the state government had not been informed. The ruling riled up several politicians from both sides of the divide, prompting Selangor Menteri Besar Khalid Ibrahim to announce a special fund to assist Muslim workers affected by the new laws.

Dr Dzul said as a responsible government, the state government must ensure that the welfare of Muslim workers in those premises was taken care of before forcing them out of their current jobs.

“However, the businessmen who sit at the board of directors of the gambling and booze companies don’t have such a reason (to stay on). Hence, we suggest Jamil Khir to direct them to quit or implement the rules on them,” said Dr Dzul.