Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Mujahid Yusof has questioned the motive of the Group Of Ex-Civil Servants (G25) which continued to raise issues regarding the establishment of the Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) although they had been given a detailed explanation on the matter previously.
He said among the matters which had been explained in two meetings with G25 held in November last year were about the establishment, enforcement and the allocation received by Jakim.
"I don't understand why this issue is still being argued. The perception created can cause worry among certain quarters," he told reporters after a gathering with agencies under the Prime Minister’s Department here today.
The media on Saturday reported a claim by G25 that the setting up of Jakim and the National Council of Islamic Religious Affairs were not in line with the constitution as there was no provision for the agencies to be set up at the national level.
Mujahid explained that Jakim's existence was a revolution of religious administration at the federal level, evolving from a religious unit in the Prime Minister’s Department to the Islamic Affairs Division before being upgraded to a department known as Jakim in 1997.
He said Jakim was important for coordination of Islamic affairs at the national level and it could only be declared unconstitutional if the department intervened in the administration of Islamic affairs in states where the Sultan is the head of religion.
On the RM1.2 billion and RM1.3 billion allocations Jakim received in 2019 and this year, Mujahid said 60 per cent was set aside to pay the salaries of imam and religious teachers nationwide, while the remaining 40 per cent was for administrative purposes including staff salaries.