Marriage to 11-year-old: Man ready to face legal action

Rubber dealer Che Mohd Karim Che Hamid says he will bear the expenses for his third wife, now being taken care of by her parents.

GUA MUSANG: Che Mohd Karim Che Hamid said he was ready to face legal action for marrying an 11-year-old girl.

Che Mohd Karim, 41, said he had given full cooperation to the authorities involved in the investigation into the marriage.

However, he said he would not divorce her and was ready to wait another five years until his wife reached the age of 16, which is the minimum legal marriage age for girls in Malaysia, before they could stay together.

“I don’t feel guilty because we were married with the blessings from her father,” he said at Kampung Panggong Lalat here today.

Kelantan shariah chief prosecutor Zaini Sulaiman was reported as saying that the rubber dealer could be charged under the Islamic Family Law Enactment 2002 for marrying the underage girl without the consent from the court and permission from his two other wives for polygamy.

Despite not staying together, Karim promised to take care of his third wife as well as his two other wives and six children.

“Even though my third wife is currently living with her parents, I will bear the expenses, including giving her religious education,” he said.

Meanwhile, in Kota Bharu, PAS had urged the non-Muslim community not to blame Islam for the marriage.

PAS deputy president Tuan Ibrahim Tuan Man described the matter as an isolated case and could take place in any other part of the world.

“It’s not about Islam but an individual,” he told reporters at a Hari Raya open house here.