KOTA KINABALU, SABAH – Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Haji Noor hopes the newly-formed Sabah Islamic Affairs Coordination Committee (JaPHEIS) will refrain from taking any extreme approach that may create anxiety among Sabah’s multi-racial and multi-religious communities.
“We need to be mindful of the fact that Malaysia is a plural country that always priorities moderation and harmony, which is also in line with the Fiqh Sabahi (methodology on preaching) concept practiced in Sabah,” he said.
Speaking at the presentation of appointment letters to committee members of JaPHEIS at the State Administrative Centre here Wednesday, Hajiji said JaPHEIS would not only represent the Muslims voice in the state but also the Sabah Government on Islamic affairs.
He also hoped JaPHEIS would assist in the empowerment of Islamic education, strengthening community unity, economic development of the Muslim community through the zakat and wakaf institution and halal hub as well as other issues affecting Muslims in general.
“Among the Halatuju Sabah Maju Jaya thrusts is the emphasis on human capital. In this respect, I hope the development of a human capital pool that is knowledgeable and skilled will be a focus of this Committee,” he said.
Chaired by Special Tasks Minister Datuk Arifin Haji Mohd Arif, the JaPHEIS set up has 19 members, which was decided by the State Cabinet in December last year.
Among its functions would be to act as the official government platform to discuss, consider and manage Islamic affairs matters referred to the state by the National Council for Islamic Affairs and National Islamic Affairs Committee Chairmen Conference Committee.
It would also act as the adviser on Islamic affairs to the Chief Minister.
Among the Committee members are Sabah Mufti, Datuk Haji Bungsu @ Aziz Jaafar, Sabah Syarie Chief Judge, Alidin @ Ahmad Din OKK Othman, Sabah Islamic Affairs Department Director, Datuk Haji Saifulzaman Sangul, JAKIM Sabah Director, Haji Norjeli Haji Dais, Sabah Commissioner of Police, Datuk Hazani Ghazali and Fifth Division of the Malaysian Infantry Commander Major General Datuk Haji Mohd Halim Khalid.