KOTA BHARU: The Kelantan state government has dismissed public uproar over the marriage of a 41-year-old man in Gua Musang to a child, saying more focus should be given to issues involving lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders (LGBT).
Kelantan Deputy Menteri Besar Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah also defended child marriages, saying it is allowed in Islam.
“This issue (child marriage) is not wrong in terms of religion (Islam)… it should not be sensationalised and made a national issue and this case is an isolated case,” he said as quoted by Bernama.
He said issues such as LGBT, illicit sex and children out of wedlock were now “a phenomenon in the country”.
“This should be a concern to the government and society,” he said.
There was outrage from the public as well as government leaders after 11-year-old Masaryu Mat Rashid was married to 41-year-old rubber tapper Che Abdul Karim Che Abdul Hamid.
The girl’s parents have defended their decision to consent to the arrangement.