ACS to lodge police report over attempts to intimidate archbishop

The crowded conditions inside the court complex in Kuching today.

KUCHING, Feb 27: The Association of Churches in Sarawak (ACS) will make a police report on the unruly behaviour and unwanted actions displayed by certain individuals in the Federal Court today.

Apart from that, the association would also convey its disappointment over the untoward incident to Unit for Other Religions (UNIFOR) and the state government to ensure that such incidents would not be repeated and immediate action be taken against the instigators.

It also expressed regrets that such rowdy and unruly behaviour has reached Sarawak’s shores.

“It is very regrettable that this rowdy and unruly behaviour (perhaps imported from somewhere) has transpired, transported, and encroached onto the shore of our peace-loving people of Sarawak,” said ACS chairman Dato Dr Justin Wan who is also the president of the SIB church in Sarawak in a statement.

He gave assurance that Christians will continue to abide by the court of law and submit themselves to the rules of the country.

He also explained that the purpose of issuing the statement was “to avoid various comments and and conflicting opinions” among ACS leaders.

Meanwhile, ACS also called on all Christians to keep calm and to not make any unnecessary and unwanted comments on social media.

The 10-point statement was issued in response to the commotion that happened in the Federal Court today.

The Federal Court today ruled that the Syariah Court has jurisdiction to hear four apostasy cases and struck out the appeal to have the cases heard in the civil court.

The four persons filing the appeal included a Malay Muslim who has converted to Christianity and three other Muslim converts who wished to return to Christianity after their spouses passed away or following divorce.

The Federal Court unanimously agreed that the cases had no merit and that even though there was no provision in the Sarawak Syariah Court Ordinance, there were still some sections of the law in the Majlis islam Sarawak Ordinance that could be deployed by the Syariah Court to hear the apostasy cases.

Catholic Archbishop Most Reverend Fr Simon Poh who was present at the hearing somehow became the target of intimidation. He was jeered at by a group of rowdy youths when he was making his exit at the end of the Federal Court hearing.

Later outside the court house, he continued to be followed by a group of shouting youths while there were some poeple as well as police present who tried to shield him from the unruly crowd. — DayakDaily