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Saturday, November 18, 2006

Azhar Mansor clarifies that he is still a Muslim!

In the Name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful.

From The Sun Online

Mariner Azhar: I have not renounced Islam
Husna Yusop

KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 17, 2006): Mariner Datuk Azhar Mansor today declared he had not renounced Islam as had been speculated since he achieved his round-the-world solo sailing feat in 1999.

In a press conference held at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) on the last day of the Umno general assembly, Azhar made the declaration in the company of Religious Advisor to the Prime Minister Tan Sri Dr Abdul Hamid Othman and Umno executive secretary Brig Gen Datuk Husainay Hashim.

Later, in his winding-up speech, Umno president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi told the assembly that Azhar had taken the opportunity to be there to say that he is a Muslim and that there should now be an end to the speculation.

Azhar was then in the crowd and he stood up to applause.

At the start of his press conference earlier, Azhar gave the salam before explaining he was there as an observer to the assembly and decided to take the opportunity to meet the press and address a situation that could potentially affect public order.

He was referring to the incident on Nov 5 at the Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Jalan Silibin, Ipoh where a large group of Muslims gathered outside the church on being informed via SMS that Azhar was to baptise a group of Muslims there.

They dispersed after police investigated and assured them no such thing was happening and that there were about 100 children of Indian descent who were being baptised.

This is the Q&A of the press conference:

Q: The polemic has arisen because of the status of your religion. Can you make it clear whether you are still a Muslim or not?

A: Sometimes, I wonder... I can make this answer a very long, long one, or I can also make it short. But I sometimes wonder, where is the confusion? Of course, from what I understand, the rumours about me no longer being a Muslim have been there since 1999 when I was still sailing. This issue has been doubted and questioned until today. From being circulated in the Internet to now in an SMS. I have not given it much thought because it was an Internet source. But to go specific to the SMS, whereby my name was involved, on the incident in Ipoh which should not have happened, I was surprised myself because I got the SMS after the incident. I was informed through my family members in Ipoh that many people had gathered to protest since I was supposed to be there to baptise people. This was out of my knowledge. Now it is under police investigation. If only in the Internet, it is okay but when there is an SMS which affected public order, I would also like to know the cause and agenda of such an SMS.

Q: After so many days, people are wondering why you have not declared that you are still a Muslim?

A: I cannot control other people's perception.

Q: Are you a Muslim?

A: My mindset is trained differently. As a sailor, my stand is, I am a person who wants to know what is in front of my eyes and in my hands. What others want to say about me, I cannot control.

Q: But you can use this opportunity to declare that you am still a Muslim! Just say yes or no.

A: Then we can go back? I also want to know what else you want to know from me.

Q: It is just whether you are a Muslim or not?

A: That's it?

Q: Before this we heard from a third party, so now we want to hear it from you.

A: If I say that, you will all leave this room. I would also like to get to know you all too.

Sometimes I wonder, why people want to know which shirt I am wearing, why I am wearing shorts.

Why do you want to know this? In fact, I have certain responsibilities which I have to adhere to and that is what I should concentrate on.

Meaning, if all of you want to know, I was born in Perlis as a Malay Muslim.

My father is a Muslim, my family and siblings are Muslims.

My own family members are also Muslims.

So, I feel the issue of the status of my religion does not arise at all.

That should not be questioned at all.

If you want to ask me that just based on the Internet and SMS, that is why I do not want to entertain this kind of things.

This is a sensitive matter. But my father, my children, my siblings are Muslims.

So there is no need for this question to arise.

And I have never, in this country or in any other parts of the world, that I have applied to renounce Islam.

And I have never thought about doing that. That was what surprised me. But I don't want you to leave now that I have answered you.

Q: The perception still persists because in the recent press statement there was nothing from you to say you are still a Muslim. That is what people want to know.

A: If I say that, if I say I am a Muslim from the very beginning, you mean that's the end of the story?

Q: Yes. That's it. Another thing, can you say the Kalimah Syahadah now? Everyone will keep quiet after this.

A: Did your mother ever ask you to say it? My father has never asked me to say it until now. Because we have said it many times, we say it everytime in our prayers.

Q: Then only this matter will not arise again later.

A: No. Cannot. I am not going to do that. This is not the Judgment Day for me to be questioned like this.

When the day comes, nobody will know where we will end up going. It is not a matter of saying it or trying to please your ears. (Bukan atas ungkapan itu atau bukan atas nak bagi sedap telinga)

Q: Our intention is only to clarify things for the public.

A: I understand. If you see me in Langkawi, we would understand each other even better.

My work is related to many people, including those from overseas. Obviously, I would always be hanging out with the white men. So, when I sit with them, people will say I am not a Muslim.
It's tough on me.

Q: Where are you based now?

A: I am based in Langkawi, as in my responsibilities. My home, as in family, is in KL. And those are the two places that I have been, other than going on short trips on business.

Hamid: I would like to explain, for everyone of us, as long as one does not renounce his religion, he remains in his original religion. There is no need for one to repeat whether he is Muslim or not.

Q (to Azhar): On the SMS incident, are you going to take action against anyone?

A: That is already under police investigation. When the SMS first came out I did not lodge any police report.

But when the matter was prolonged, I felt it was better for me to make a police report to protect myself.

Now we just wait for the police report and any further development. I cannot say anything else as of now.

Q: Are you saying that what is contained in the SMS is a fitnah (accusation/defamation/slander)?

A: I am not used to using that kind of word. I would never say anything if I see someone wearing shorts, or drinking in a coffee shop or in a bar. That is his personal matter.

We should take care of our ownselves.

If we want to question whether one is a Muslim or a Christian, it would be tough.

But all I know, my responsibility, my stand, my faith is in Allah.

So, don't question me now and I am only living my daily life in Malaysia according to the Syariah teaching and country's regulations.

I have never committed any offence. If you want to ask whether one is a Muslim or not, it is better for you to ask the rapists. That is better.

Don't ask me that. I was only doing my job in langkawi. I have never disturbed anybody. It is the others who always disturbed me.

Husainay: The conclusion is, Azhar is still a Muslim. I think we better make it clear. So, let us end this session.

Q: Do you think the SMS has something to do with your business relations?

Azhar: I don't know. I will wait and see the outcome of the police investigation. If I can get hold of the finding, perhaps I can think of what to do next. But now I do not want to think about it. Now I just want to stay to follow the assembly and later go back to Langkawi to continue with my work. But I will be wearing my shorts. Is it okay with you guys if I wear shorts?

Hamid: But we must be clear that in Islam, faith is one aspect, while behaviour is another aspect. They are not inter-connected.

So if a citizen was caught stealing, he is guilty and considered a criminal, but his citizenship remains. It will not be abolished.

Islam is also like that. If a Muslim does not practise the Islamic teaching, that is another story, but his faith in Islam remains. It will not be affected.

Q: After this, would your daily life be affected?

Azhar: "No, it will not affect me. It is just that sometimes, I think, is our country this bad to the extent I have to take action to protect my family?

Should that happen, I would be very much shocked. But for me, I am too engrossed with my responsibilities. I have never worked but I have a lot of responsibilities.

And at this opportunity, I would like to say, being the unofficial ambassador of Langkawi, I would like to invite you all to come to Langkawi if you want to go for a holiday.

Then you can see me in shorts."

End of report.


All praises be to Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala for this wonderful end to the questions as to whether Brother Azhar Mansor is an apostate from Islam as was being reported by the Sydney Anglican Church and also be said to be going to 'baptise' a 100 Malay Muslims at the Ipoh Catholic Church of 'Our Lady of the Lourdes'.

With this open declaration from himself, I hope that there will be no more slander against him going on by the propaganda efforts of the demented few!

Alhamdulillah! May Allah SWT bless us all ! Ameen.

To Brother Datuk Azhar Mansor, I wish you all the best in your life and do not shy away from stating that you are a Servant of Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta'ala! Insya Allah!

The Truth has prevailed! Allahu Akbar!


Friend from Texas said...

Azhar is definitely a crafty chap....because he certainly has someone as bright as you, dear Mahaguru, fooled all the way.

Read the transcript again.

Emmanuel said...

Brother Mahaguru,

While I am glad he came out and admitted, I find it odd that he missed saying out directly simple that 'I am a Muslim' or reciting the Kalimah Syahadah.I mean his statements still leaves much legal loopholes la.

Either way I really hope this will arrest the matter from worsening Christian-Muslim relations in this country that probably at its worse stage now (regardless of what the government tells us) as there is so much distrust and blocked up hatred between our two religions.Let's build bridges instead of walls :)

Nik Azlan said...

Is that all that you'll say about this? You're not at all disturb by what had happen to your 'brother'. What do you think about some of the questions (for example wanting Azhar to recite Kalimah Syahadah?). Is this how a muslim should treat suspious 'brother'?

Of all that's happening in our world now, we spent so much of our resources on this one particular sailor. Why do we do this?

mahaguru58 said...

Assalamualaikum Nik and Greetings FFT and others.

You think I can't see the fella beating around the bush and not having the balls to state upfront that 'There's No God but Allah and That Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah!'?

I for one can easily see right thru his words that the fella is pulling a fast one on the masses!

What do you want me to do?

Keep stoking up this matter and raise the temperatures of all of us Malaysian Muslims and Christians out there who are spoiling for a fight and destroy this country?

I am just a common citizen and do not have the powers to arrest the fellow and bring him over to Bukit Aman to work the fella over as DSAI got it when he was invited to the Peaceful Hill!

I have come to know humanbeings to such an extent that I can tell the shifty looks that the chap has when answering the journalists.

Look people, I know and you know what is the true picture here and any Muslim worth his name will without the slightest hesitation say out loud 'Allahu Akbar' and clear the doubts as to his true status once and for all!

When a 'Muslim' hesitates to utter the Kalimah Shahadah upfront to the entire world , what does that tell you?

I am sure that you nik and FFT know exactly his true nature as well as I feel I do, too!



Anyway, Malaysia's Government will never uphold the Hudud Laws or even do anything about this fella or Lina Joy even though all the proofs are right there before us all as far as the latter is concerned!

The former is sort of getting it easy because he is well connected.

The day that UMNO upholds the Hudud will be the day that PAS dissolves itself and returns to UMNO's fold uniting the Malays!

Till then, it's gonna be you curse me ; I curse you till Doomsday!

Hope you are both happy now that I have stated upfront that I know the fella's hiding something so very obvious!

I leave him to Allah SWT!

The PM is the one who is in charge of the affairs of the Muslims here.

The Malay Sultans are just figureheads without Executive Powers to judge and punish any apostate!

YAB Dato Seri Abdullah Badawi is the one who will be answering to Allah SWT as to why he's shying away from doing what he should!

Wallahu Alam bissawab!

God knows best!

* Thanks for acknowledging my brightness FFT but do know that I can't be shining my spotlight on that chap without covering my ass from being sued for 'libel'! :P

You know I know okay lah! :D

Meriza said...

salam all,

alhamdulillah. azhar is still a muslim.

why want to be confused just because he didn't mengucapkan kalimah syahadah on live TV? semua orang yang lain tu sudah jadi saksi bahawa dia seorang Islam, maka cukuplah.

mahaguru, why u want to hear from someone like FFT of all people? dia adalah musuh Islam yang suka memeningkan kepala orang Islam sendiri. bisikannya bisikan syaitan.

kalau saya jadik azhar dan tak pernah murtad, selama ni jaga posa dan solat, tak hingin aku nak layan pitnah manusia yang takde kerja lain selain melemparkan najis kepada masyarakat. sudah buat press conference, sudah lah. nak apa lagik hah? kalau dia betul2 kirstian yang beriman lah kan, dia tentu takkan buat press con macam ni punya. Jesus sure won't accept his denial of his Faith if he doesn't openly say he is christian.

cukuplah dengan isu ni mahaguru. cukuplah. cukuplah. mamt tu kena fitnah, syaitan dicipta dari apa, jangan dia tabur api lagi sudahlah.

kita orang islam, puas hati. case settled.

Tina said...

In this country, i would probably be beaten up or murdered for admitting to be a Christian. I had a Muslim friend who became a Christian...and she went thru HELL with the muslim people, religious dept..she got beaten up etc...Like I always say, what is in yr heart that counts.. even if muslims kill her today, they can never cut out her heart and change her heart.

lan said...

From reading the transcript and not relying on the conclusions and summary contained in the news reports, one can only concludes that Azhar Mansor never said that he is still a muslim.

He only said he "was born a muslim", his family are muslims etc. But never touched about his present faith, and in fact avoided answering that question!

Saying believing in Allah doesn't guarantee being a muslim as we very well know that indonesian and arab christians also call god Allah.

Thus the question remains unresolved.

mahaguru58 said...

Assalamualaikum Meriza,

As far as FFT being the 'Devil Incarnate' and not worth to be 'entertained' as he is as you say, the # 1 Enemy of Islam, I know that he sure comes across as one, complete with all the insults against the Prophet SAW and such!

You can say that he is a regular 'Abu Jahal' of our times.

We just have to accept that there are billions of 'Abu Jahal's' like him out there.

Do we choose then to be as the 3 monkeys who 'See No Evil; Speak No Evil; Hear No Evil' categories?

At times, FFT speaks honestly as he sees things.

This gives guys like me a different perspective to reflect upon and see another angle of any particular issue and thus I welcome his comments no matter that to you he is a real pain in the ass and ought to be 'avoided' at all costs.

Each of us have different stages of knowledge imbued in us and we each have our own set of values in weighing the pros and cons of any one thing here on Earth.

So, as much as I respect your rights to think as you please, I do however beg to differ with you in choosing to allow FFT to continue commenting here.

To me, he is an Abu Jahal who can still be allowed room to share his views if it is okay to my judgements and which I surely won't approve if it is too nasty or unstomachable!

As for Azhar Mansor's refusal to declare openly the Kalimah Shahadah, that is a clear sign of his being not man enough to prove to the whole wide world that he has not apostasised from Islam!

Anyway, to us as Muslims, it doesn't affect us individually in our lifes but to me as a Caller to Islam, the man ought to be taken to task for his failure to clear the rumours and gossips about him having turned MURTAD by the very manner in his replies to the press!

You can't expect me to accede to your request to stop writing about him for as far as I am concerned, this matter still remains unanswered as it should be by the man who is so evasive in his answers.

So, sorry to have to disappoint you, the queries still will go on!

Al Haqqul Islam can never allow wishy washy statements about it's Ummah be allowed to remain, eating away into the Ummah's peace of mind here as in Azhar Mansor's case in Malaysia!

You are still young and the road to discovering all the various aspects of Islam is still a long way up ahead for you to travel.

You need to at times , go back in reverse and see the perspective before you in a wider angle.

You will Insya Allah be able to see things in a different light and be the wiser as to how to deal with things before you.

There are a few individuals whom I have come to realise that it's futile to continue giving them space here in my blog and those who have been following my writings know who these individuals are for the sheer reason that they are totally and absolutely negative in each of their comments to me.

So, I do not need those kind to come spoil my moods daily.

We have a choice. So, I exercise that choice as I see fit.

Regarding FFT, we have an understanding between us and I can feel it in my heart as to why he says things his way.

He too has come to sort of understand my standpoints and we have this agreeing to disagree on certain points but we do move on and discuss things as they unfold before us as mature reasonable men talking about stuff, etcetera.

Each of us are not free from sin and mistakes, hence we need to choose what works for us and just leave things that have no benefit to us.

Life is a series of adjustments and as rational beings, we need to adjust and adapt or just move on with our lifes.

Dwelling on someone's faults doesn't make us any better in any way.

We need to just be progressive in our quest to improve ourselves in all ways.

So, please do not think that I do not care about how you view this matter but you also need to understand that I am my own man and I will write as I see fit.

It is the Redha of Allah SWT that I seek and the understanding of my fellow Muslims and Non Muslims readers as to the points I make in my bloggings.

May Almighty Allah SWT continue to guide me as I put to print my ideas and views about all that I feel is worth sharing with all here.

Wabillahi taufeek walhidayah

Wassalamu alaikum warahmatullahi wabarakatuh.

Ganeemathullah said...

Azhar was not giving a direct answer which any Muslim would have given. These days, all kindda people swearing on the Quran and yet he is reclutant to even spur the Kalimah Syahadah...

Something is fishy.....