LAST_UPDATESun, 24 Jun 2018 9pm

Controversial Preacher Zamihan To Continue Public Service Of Reforming Religious Militants - Deputy PM Zahid

Pic: NSTPPic: NSTPKUALA LUMPUR: The Home Ministry will retain the service of outspoken preacher Zamihan Mat Zin to rehabilitate and de-radicalise Islamic State militants held in prisons.

Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said this was because Zamihan had the expertise in the de-radicalisation programme.

"My records have shown his success in restoring aqidah (faith) of Muslims who are associated with terrorism.

"Therefore, he is an asset to guide the group (of extremists) to the right path. He should not be penalised with (the removal of) his position at the Prison's Department," he told reporters after delivering his keynote speech at 2017 Huawei Asia-Pacific Innovation Day today.

Zahid, who is also Home Minister, said Zamihan may be banned from delivering any sermons in Selangor, but he was capable of rehabilitating and de-radicalising terrorists, potential terrorists and those who were found to have contributed financially to an extremist cause.

"There is a manual and standard operating procedure for our de-radicalisation programme and it is available in four languages (Malay, English, Arabic and French).

"Zamihan is one of the experts (who produced the manual). He was also once an officer in Home Ministry to oversee religious publications," he added.

PKR central committee member Latheefa Koya today expressed worry with Zamihan's involvement in the rehabilitation and de-radicalisation programme, despite having been referred to the disciplinary board by the Malaysia Islamic Development Department (Jakim) for stirring the recent controversies.

She said the preacher's views were extreme and this included on the Muslims-only laundrette issue that had caused him to be banned in Selangor and Johor; and his verbal attack against a surau administrator for giving shelter to non-Muslims affected by the floods in Penang.

-New Straits Times