Zakir Naik not above the law, says Muhyiddin

GOMBAK: Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin today said that no one is above the law if they are shown to have committed wrongdoing, including controversial Indian Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik.

He said although Naik had received support and even invitations to meet with party leaders including ministers from PPBM, this would not affect the investigation against him.

“It does not mean that we are tied to their views. We will act based on the rule of law,” he said in a press conference here, adding however that a detailed probe must be conducted.

Naik is currently the subject of a police investigation based on over 100 reports filed against him.

He has been questioned several times at the Bukit Aman federal police headquarters under Section 504 of the Penal Code for intentional insult with intent to provoke a breach of peace, as a result of remarks made in public speeches in Kota Bharu, Kelantan.

Authorities last week announced a nationwide gag order on the preacher, who is now prohibited from speaking in public whether through talks or social media platforms.

Muhyiddin said Naik’s status as a permanent resident (PR) meant that the preacher should adhere to the laws of the country.

He added that Naik should appreciate his PR status and consider it a privilege.

“He cannot go against our ethics and laws,” he said. “It’s not that we don’t respect him, don’t misunderstand. He is a religious figure. But if he sometimes touches on issues, like now, we cannot let it be.”

Muhyiddin said Naik’s statements had caused instability and widespread dissatisfaction.

“Exceptions will not be made for him,” he said, adding that the matter concerns national security.