| November 1, 2013
The federal Islamic authority, Jakim also warns Muslims against listening to “false shadows” of the government’s enemies.
PETALING JAYA: Muslims must cooperate with the government in making the 2014 Budget a success, as the budget is good for the ummah and in accordance with Islamic principles, Malaysian Muslim’s were told in their weekly Friday sermon, today.
“The pulpit is confident that our rulers, in arranging and managing this budget, did it based on the spirit of Islam guided by the principles of al-adhl wal ihsan – which embodies the spirit of justice and charity, without burdening the people,” the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) said in today’s weekly sermon.
“The pulpit urges all Muslims to work together to make this budget a success, and to give your serious and proper cooperation.”
Jakim, in its sermon which is available on its website, extended congratulations to “the rulers, especially the prime minister” for presenting a budget which it said prioritized the people’s needs.
The 2014 Budget was unveiled by Prime Minister cum Finance Minister Najib Tun Razak exactly a week ago, on October 25. It sought to address a large fiscal deficit and growing debt by introducing the GST and slashing the sugar subsidy, but sweetened the deal with increased cash vouchers for the financially needy.
But opposition coalition Pakatan Rakyat has criticized the budget as being a punishment to Malaysians, zeroing in on the 6% GST, which it claims is a regressive tax that will hit the middle income the hardest.
However, Jakim today warned Muslims against being “hypnotized by the false shadows created by the enemy”, an apparent reference to the opposition.
“…do not belittle and ridicule the government’s noble intentions, as it is fighting to protect and raise the dignity of the ummah,” said Jakim.
The federal Islamic authority also poured praise on the much-maligned GST, echoing Barisan National’s [BN] stance in maintaining that the tax would not burden the people.
“The implementation of the GST… is a method to restructure the country’s current tax system so that it is more effective, fair, efficient and transparent, and will help circumvent any hidden or overlapping taxes.
“GST has been implemented in several other countries,” Jakim added, repeating Najib’s justification for the controversial tax.
“Believe us, the budget this time around is a budget to strengthen the economy and safeguard the rakyat’s interest, including raising the education of the ummah through the education sector with an allocation of RM54.6 billion or 21% of the total budget.”
Jakim also listed out other goodies that the government had provided for the rakyat in the budget, such as the Bantuan Rakyat 1 Malaysia (BR1M) cash vouchers, bonuses to civil servants, rakyat-friendly homes, and financial aid for kindergartens.
“After examining and studying the budget, the pulpit is confident that the rulers have taken into account the interests of the rakyat, in order to strengthen the economy.
“Remember, Muslims, that the duty of strengthening the economy of the ummah is a responsibility from Allah and this responsibility will be taken into account in the hereafter,” it said.