CCM Press Statement on
Court of Appeal Judgement on Lina Joy
The Council of Churches of Malaysia (CCM) views with great regret and concern the majority judgement that was made yesterday by the Court of Appeal.
We believe that the constitutional provision in Article 11 which guarantees freedom of religion in our country has been severely violated.
The majority judgement has denied the individual a right guaranteed under the constitution, a right to freedom of conscience and choice of religion. It would appear that the constitution is being read subject to extraneous (Syariah) considerations.
It is, therefore, vital that the necessary legislation be enacted to ensure that no citizen would feel penalized when he or she exercises the individual right to choose a faith and to practice it in freedom.
The CCM calls on the government to set in motion measures to protect religious freedom as originally envisaged in the Federal Constitution of 1957.
On this our 50th anniversary of Merdeka we cannot feel a strong sense of celebration when a citizen like Lina Joy, and others like her, have their rights taken away from them from the very courts that are duty bound to protect the civil liberties of all citizens and treat all equal under the law.
Rev. Dr. Thomas Philips
Rev. Dr. Hermen Shastri
Dated: 31st May 2007
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