Follow Selangor on minimum age for marriage, Sabah government urged

Sabah Wanita Umno chief Jainab Ahmad Ayid says they share similar concerns as women all over the country on underage marriage problems and related issues. (File pic)

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Wanita Umno wants the state government to emulate the move by Selangor and raise the minimum age for marriage for Muslim men and women to 18 years, from 16.

Its chief Jainab Ahmad Ayid said they fully supported the move by Selangor and hoped the same could be done in Sabah.

“We in Sabah Wanita Umno share similar concerns as women all over the country on underage marriage problems and related issues.

“Underage marriage is also a problem in Sabah, as many of our women groups in the state have voiced out recently. Such cases have also been brought to court,” she said in a statement Tuesday.

Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah on Monday consented to the proposal by the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (MAIS) and the Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) that the minimum age for marriage for Muslim men and women be changed from 16 to 18 years.

At the second meeting of the first session of the 14th Selangor State Assembly, Sultan Sharafuddin said he viewed seriously the cases of Muslims marrying at a very young age, especially girls, as he was worried it would affect their future and have an effect on society.

Jainab, who is former Sabah community development and consumer affairs minister, said: “I personally feel that girls need to be allowed to study and follow their dreams, to enjoy their life as they wish.”