Perkasa chief seeks to intervene in lawsuit against Zakir Naik

KHAIRAH N. KARIM

KUALA LUMPUR: Pertubuhan Pribumi Perkasa Malaysia (Perkasa) president Datuk Ibrahim Ali has applied to be an intervenor in a lawsuit by 19 human rights activists against the government and four others for harboring controversial Muslim preacher Dr Zakir Naik.


Ibrahim had filed his application through Messrs Adnan Sharida & Associates at the High Court registrar here today.


He claimed that his application to intervene was because the case has affected the rights and interests of Muslims to listen and gain knowledge from talks and sermons presented by Dr Zakir.


"I am intervening to defend Dr Zakir as he is a Muslim preacher and almost all members of Perkasa are Muslims.


"He (Dr Zakir) represents a symbol of Islamic 'dakwah' and that is why we come here and defend him," Ibrahim said in a press conference at courts complex lobby here.


On March 1, Hindu Rights Action Force (Hindraf) chairman P. Waytha Moorthy and 18 others filed an originating summons seeking a court order to declare that the presence of Dr Zakir in Malaysia was a threat to national security and harmony in the country.


They also claimed that the Islamic preacher had encouraged terrorism in public and is banned in a few countries on suspicion of working with terrorist groups.


They are seeking an order to stop Dr Zakir from coming to the country and pushed for his immediate arrest, among others.


In their legal action, they named Deputy Prime Minister and Home Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, director-general of the Immigration Department, director-general of the National Registration Department, Inspector-General of Police and the government as the defendants.