Cabinet nod to set up panel to empower shariah court

KUALA LUMPUR: The government has agreed to establish a special committee to empower shariah court and shariah law as a whole, in line with the status of Islam as the official religion of the federation as enshrined in the Federal Constitution.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Jamil Khir Baharom said the establishment of the special committee was approved by the cabinet at its meeting yesterday.

He said the initiative also proved the government’s continuous commitment to empowering the shariah court in a holistic manner for the benefit of the Muslims.

“The committee will be a credible platform to improve the existing shariah court’s judicial system,” he said in a statement here today.

Jamil Khir said several clusters would be set up under the committee to discuss matters concerning efforts to harmonise civil and shariah laws; the proposed amendment to the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act (Act 355); management and restructuring of shariah court; trainings for shariah judges and officers; shariah law education; and shariah lawyer affairs.

The committee will comprise representatives from state Islamic religious councils and the Attorney-General’s Chambers, academicians, social activists, former top government officers and legal experts from both civil and shariah courts, he added.