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Herald editor saddened by Federal Court's decision

Herald editor saddened by Federal Court's decision
Father Lawrence (centre) seen outside the Federal Court room - Astro AWANI
PUTRAJAYA: The editor of "The Herald" Father Lawrence Andrew today appeared deeply disturbed by the Federal Court decision to uphold a ban on the word 'Allah' saying that everyone was "greatly disappointed".

"The decision of the four judges touched on unrelated matters but the three dissenting voices spoke with clarity on the rights of the people and the rights of the minority," Lawrence told reporters outside court here today.

Lawrence praised the three dissenting judges for being "courageous" in upholding the Federal Constitution.

"They found fault and weaknesses in the way the Court of Appeal decision was carried out.

"The appeal court was to look at the procedure of the high court decision but went beyond that and made sweeping statements affecting Christians," he said.

Expressing that the court decision was not a "game of who wins and loses" but was in fact reality for many Christians.

"In the end we're face with one god judgement. Let us continue to hope and love one another and that here will be peace as we overcome this situation."

And Perkasa says ...

"It is settled. Let's get on with our lives," said Perkasa president, Datuk Ibrahim Ali to Federal Court decision to reverse a ban of the word 'Allah' for Catholic Church's local Malay-language edition of its Herald publication.

"Alhamdullillah, thank God. This case settled," Ibrahim told reporters merely minutes after he was informed of the verdict, here today.

Ibrahim hopes that with the decision, there will be no longer questions and issues pertaining the usage of of kalimah "Allah" by non-Muslims.

"For us, in Peninsula, this never came up. I hope this doesn't come up again. We will continue to live with our culture all these while to respect one another," he said, stressing that the scenario was different in both Sabah and Sarawak.

"We don't want to disturb whatever is going on there," he clarified.

Ibrahim however stressed that the vocal stance and protests demonstrated by Perkasa was aimed purely to uphold national security.

"I hope they will understand, they can use any language we don't care. Let's put the issue to rest and continue with our lives," he said.

While the issue has touched the sensitivities of many quarters within the Muslim fraternity in the country, Ibrahim said that Perkasa could have easily called on more crowd but had decided the otherwise.

Asked if Perkasa would act upon if non-Muslims continued to question or use 'Allah', Ibrahim gave his assurance that his members would not act.

"We are not a government authority and it up to them as law enforcement. We don't want to take laws into our own hands," said Ibrahim.