MUZ Council of Islamic Scholars calls Singapore’s ban of “balanced and moderate” Mufti Menk “misguided”


Following an announcement by Singapore’s Ministry of Home Affairs that Mufti Menk is one of two foreign preachers that have been banned from entering the nation, the Majlisul Ulama Zimbabwe MUZ (Council of Islamic Scholars) has released a statement calling the decision to bar their senior mufti from the nation as “misguided”.

The Council’s President, Shaikh Umar Phiri, wrote that it is “unfortunate and unfair” to call the Mufti’s teachings divisive and said that the religious leader “has played a pivotal role in the global war on extremism by maintaining a very balanced approach and educating the Muslims regarding their duty to respect people of other faiths and inclinations”:

“We have been following with regret and dismay the news on social media regarding the ban imposed on our Senior Mufti, Dr Ismail Menk, by the authorities in Singapore, who allegedly claimed his preaching to be divisive and unfit for multi-cultural, multi-religious Singapore.

“The allegations are based on an inaccurate perception of one of his lectures where they concluded that our Mufti prohibits greeting people of other faiths on their religious festivals such as saying Merry Christmas or Happy Diwali. This, according to them, is deemed divisive.

“We would like to place on record that our Mufti has never prohibited greeting others during their festivals. However, he has maintained that the wording should be inclusive to ensure that it is agreeable to all. In his opinion, greetings such as Happy Holidays, Seasons Greetings, Have a Good Day are fine.

“To claim that his preaching is divisive because of this is unfortunate, unfair and seems to be done without understanding the middle ground he has always taught in this regard.

“We are aware of a very short edited clip that was used to prove the allegation against our Mufti. The entire sermon was not heard. This, we believe is the reason why such a misguided decision was made.

“Mufti Menk has been an asset to multi-cultural, multi-religious Zimbabwe where we have never seen any religious tension. Similarly, he has proven his value on the world stage and in similar settings.

“Mufti Menk has played a pivotal role in the global war on extremism by maintaining a very balanced approach and educating the Muslims regarding their duty to respect people of other faiths and inclinations.

“Among the Muslims too, Mufti Menk has been a breath of fresh air, strongly promoting the respect of other Muslim sects.

“Guided by our Mufti, we serve on several interfaith boards working with members of most religious denominations and we enjoy the best relations.

“Our Mufti has very good relations with leaders and people of other faiths.

“Mufti Menk is himself a graduate of a Christian College in Harare and holds a doctorate of Social Guidance from a Christian University.

“We place on record that he has never said it is “blasphemous” to greet others during their festivals. He teaches that everyone has the same right to celebrate their festivals, without any fear or restriction.

“We urge those concerned to listen to some of his sermons in full and not an edited clip of a few minutes. These talks are available online. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook or instagram to see the moderate path he has chosen.

“We stand with our Mufti and are very proud of his achievements and guidance over the last two decades.”

MHA reported on Monday that the ban was instated following consultation with the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS), Singapore Tourism Board and Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore.

The Ministry noted that Mufti Menk has been known to preach “segregationist and divisive teachings” – such as teaching that it is a sin and crime for a Muslim to wish a non-Muslim Merry Christmas or Happy Deepavali – and asserted:

“Such divisive views breed intolerance and exclusivist practices that will damage social harmony, and cause communities to drift apart. They are unacceptable in the context of Singapore’s multi-racial and multi-religious society.”

It added that such teachings are “detrimental to our society and way of life, and will undermine the fundamentals of Singapore’s peace and progress.”

Meanwhile, the Sultan of Johor Bahru has followed Singapore’s suit and banned the Mufti from the Malaysian state as well.

Johor Islamic Religious Affairs Committee chairman Abdul Mutalip Abdul Rahim said today that the Sultan of Johor also decreed that Malaysian Haslin Baharim will not be allowed to preach in the state, along with Zimbabwean Mufti Ismail Menk. Singapore had banned the Malaysian preacher on Monday, as well.

The committee chairman said:

“The content of their previous speeches appear to promote racial and religious unrest, which disrupts harmony between the races.
“The Johor Islamic Religious Department will continue monitoring religious talks in this state to ensure there are no elements or views that encourages racial disunity from being delivered.”

STATEMENT BY Majlisul Ulama Zimbabwe MUZ (Council of Islamic Scholars) on the Mufti Menk issueWe have been following…

Posted by Mufti Ismail Menk on Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Singapore government’s decision to ban Mufti Menk draws mixed reactions from netizens


    • When you see a neighbour highly successful economically and socially, even outshining your own central government, You can’t help but want to emulate your neighbour over your own country man. Doing that doesn’t mean angkat bodek. It means you too want success for your people.

    • Mat Noor. Only losers feel winners are delusional. You sound like you got the short end of the stick in life.
      I’m noticing a pattern here in the profile of those who call winners angkat bodek and delusional. Notice who the usual suspects are?

    • So you do feel you’ve gotten the short end of the stick.
      Why do you feel that way? I’m a lesser minority than you. How come I don’t feel that way. Perhaps we don’t possess the same competitiveness and drive, you and I.
      Perhaps you prefer to be handed out things instead of earning it.

    • Different races will have different experiences in any country, you’ve never felt how your country was taken from you, so you won’t feel how it feels, if it was taken fairly the feeling won’t be as bitter, of course the history books didn’t wrote what exactly happens.

    • Muhd Firdaus well, Eurasian is a bastardized version of the so-called European descent with no native land, obviously he won’t be able to empathize with you bro. Try to come out with a better point lah….

    • There is no such lands belongs to anyone just because of history.
      If based on history.. please go further back to dinosaur age. Don’t stop at the point benefiting your argument.
      What you have now is yours…. When you are gone..
      Another person will come along…n becomes theirs.

    • Patrick Lim If we follow your argument why still need to maintain chinese as the majority race? If no land belongs to anyone? Year by year import many PRCs to maintain the % of chinese, I even got chinese friends who don’t think this is right as well, so this was not against the chinese but what the government is doing to divide and conquer.

    • Gosh! You big whiners.… always feeling someone somewhere stole something from you. And yet you enjoy the fruits of the Singapore success. So you feel if Singapore were predominantely Malay, we would have progressed this far, this fast? Let’s be real.
      If a Chinese said this It would sound racist and cocky, so let a minority like myself say this hard truth to you.
      You can whine your whole life about this.
      Or you can move up and progress with the rest including minorities like myself who don’t feel marginalized.

    • Paul G de Silva Of course u don’t feel anything, you just have to go with the flow, you based things on who can benefit you economically not what is morally right, that is such the person you are, to each their own I guess.

    • Paul G de Silva in Malay there is a term ‘perah santan’ . Sultan already gave his reason. Nothing to do with Singapore. Delusional and perasantan. And triggered.

    • In any problems there is 2 sides, you can blame a Malay like me for whining but not the aggressor who imports PRCs year after year to maintain the chinese % and don’t think this is wrong, because you are biased.

    • Muhd Firdaus Who gave singapore independent..who kick out singapore? You should not hate those who gain independent, rather put your anger on those who gave them the rights to be independent.

    • Muhd Firdaus.. Like I say….
      Now this lands belongs to all Singaporeans… Note “Not any races. ”
      One day all Singaporean gone… This land will belong to whoever wins over.

    • Muhd Firdaus Under the system of democracy, if the Malay willing to vote for LKY, then LKY will be the PM of Malaysia, nothing wrong with that. If Malays view LKY as a threat, there is no need to kick singapore out bcoz no way LKY can be PM. LKY do not seek military action to illegally dethrone the federal gov. Who kick Singapore out and let Sg gain independent? I think LKY do not kick Sg out.

    • If China is to attack malaysia n singapore with military power…n win the wars. This lands will belong to China. Not Malays , Chinese or Indians but belongs to China.

    • Muhd Firdaus Doesnt matter, our British based westminster system require the party to gain majority of the federal seat in order to form the federal gov. Only Sg majority like the PAP party to Singapore cannot be a threat to the ruling UMNO party. Last time, Gerakan won the majority of Penang seat, and Gerakan was not part of BN. Do BN kick Penang out bcoz opposition Gerakan (that time) won Penang?

    • After all these 50 years, I still can’t believe there are pockets of Singaporean Malays who feel someone somehow stole their country from them Many I know have assimilated and progressed with the rest. But not all. Is it the habits? Is it thefood? Is it the beliefs? That’s why to this day the PAP the government has to backtrack pander to these matters, for these handful- like takingthe best of them and handing them Presidency. This wouldn’t have been necessary if not for these handful who feel marginalized. These few dream of bringing back the days of” Free School Fees for Malays” while the rest pay their dues. I thought we had evolved from that long long ago. Look like not. so can you blame the other minority races if they despise you for harbouring such a stance? Can you blame them for being suspicious of you? Can you blame the authorities if they deem such characters among the vulnerable to extremist influences? For records have shown who are likely to be sympathizers of such dogma.
      50 years of Independance and racial integration, and we still have assimilation problems from a handful.

    • Paul G de Silva If we have progressed why the need to maintain chinese as the majority, isn’t that ethnic cleansing, you took someones land and then bring in your people and change the demographic so would be able to fully control that land, look up meaning of ethnic cleansing, same thing happening in Aus, NZ, USA. Yes economically we did better but morally you don’t think what PAP did is right? You might wanna deny such a thing is not wrong or pretend it is not happening but it is indeed ethnic cleansing, if they want to make it better stop with trying to maintain chinese as the majority here, you can deny all you want but it is a race based politics. You calling out Malays who have such thoughts as extremes when it isn’t, because it is cruel and against human rights, Aborigines, Indians in USA speaks up against such oppressiveness when their lands was taken from them as well, so are they being extremist to you? Yes it happens 50 years ago but cruelty should be addressed no matter how long ago it was, if not the pain and tension will always be there.

    • You still still don’t get it Muhd Firdaus.
      The writings on the wall as clear as day, and you still don’t get it.
      You think you are being ethnically cleansed. You clearly show what your thought process is all about.
      You just don’t get it. That figures.

  1. not only Mufti Ismail Menk been BAN but Ustaz Haslin Baharim a.k.a Ustaz Bollywood from malaysia also been BAN too by the SO CALLED authorities in Singapore and the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS) can’t do anything much about this in another word is HOPELESS

    • What are the Quality n Benefits that both bring to the Table for the Rakyat .. Food, Wealth, Peace, Harmony or Security ? None of these accept creating fictions btw Religion, Race n Divisive Speeches to creates trouble n problem for the Rakyat.

    • Yet some churches in singapore are given freedom to distribute articles like ‘why chinese gods are demons’ etc to their members. How come authority never monitor them?

    • Go Google n check yourself. You will find that you are wrong.
      We can argue, debate n discuss over religious beliefs by using what is written in the Books, but we must not use religion beliefs to invite n incite hated against them.

  2. “Such divisive views breed intolerance and exclusivist practices that will damage social harmony, and cause communities to drift apart. They are unacceptable in the context of Singapore’s multi-racial and multi-religious society.”

    It added that such teachings are “detrimental to our society and way of life, and will undermine the fundamentals of Singapore’s peace and progress.”

  3. Respect the sultan. Well done.
    No wonder my Malay friends of over 40 years has stopped greeting me this days. I always wonder why. Now I know. They had been wishing me for such a long time and now it has stopped. Some of them do carry on as well.

  4. For the record, this is the man who got busted in the UK for saying that “With all due respect to the animals, [homosexuals] are worse than animals.”

    Just so you understand who he and his supporters are.

    Also, for those of you religious homophobes out there, fuck you and the crock of shit you were raised in.

    That is all.

  5. “MHA reported on Monday that the ban was instated following consultation with the Islamic Religious Council of Singapore (MUIS), ”

    It is worthy to note that Mufti Menk made the comment about not saying “Happy ” after the Mufti from MUIS gave that greeting (I am lazy to google but I think he said Happy or Merry Christmas)

    In a way, you can say that the other Mufti is taking revenge for embarrassing him.

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