Sultan of Selangor wants marriage age increased from 16 to 18

DAWN CHAN

SHAH ALAM: Sultan of Selangor Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah is in agreement with the proposal to increase the marriage age of Muslim men and women in the state from 16 to 18 and hoped that amendments to the enactment will be tabled during the state assembly sitting which he had officiated today.

In his royal address while opening the 2nd meeting of the 1st term of the 14th state legislative assembly sitting, Sultan Sharafuddin voiced his concern over cases that involved Muslim couples getting married at a very young age.

“Recently, the people were shocked by marriage cases involving Muslim children who are too young, especially girls. I view these cases seriously as I worry that there will be adverse risks on the couple’s future and its impact to the community in the future.

“Therefore, I had decreed that the Selangor Islamic Religious Council (MAIS) and Selangor Islamic Religious Department (JAIS) review the existing laws for Muslims in Selangor and make proposed improvements if needed. Following that, MAIS and JAIS had presented to me the proposed amendments to the existing laws.

“I am in agreement with the proposal to streamline the marriage age limit for Muslim men and girls in Selangor to be raised from the minimum of 16 to 18,” said Sultan Sharafuddin.

Sultan Sharafuddin said there were several other amendments that needed to be made to improve the procedures and the processes to consent to underage marriage in the Syariah Court.

His Majesty said this includes conditions needed to be adhered by parents and relevant parties such as acquiring records from the mental, physical, fertility, character and sociology aspects as well as consent from the applicant to ensure that their marriage would not bring negativity.

“For that , there are several provisions to the Islamic Family Law (State of Selangor) Enactment 2003 and the Syariah Court Civil Procedure (State of Selangor) Enactment 2003 (Enakmen Tatacara Mal Mahkamah Syariah (Negeri Selangor) 2003 that are proposed to be amended. I hope both the proposed amendments will be tabled at this sitting,” said Sultan Sharafuddin.

The opening of the state assembly sitting was also graced by Tengku Permaisuri Selangor Tengku Permaisuri Norashikin and Raja Muda Selangor Tengku Amir Shah.

Sultan Sharafuddin also said he was grateful that the beloved nation and Selangor had successfully undergone a democratic process, through the general election, to choose its people’s representatives and form a government peacefully and harmoniously.

He he hoped the peace and harmony will continue to be defended to preserve the unity that has been fostered among the races in this state.

Sultan Sharafuddin also viewed the sitting as one that has made history as there is a big number of new state assemblymen and hoped all the Yang Berhormat (elected representatives) will continue to shoulder the trust entrusted by the rakyat who had chosen them.

“I hope that all people’s representatives will cooperate with the executive councillors which is headed by Amirudin Shari (Selangor Menteri Besar). I hope all the Yang Berhormat in the house will debate policy matters and develop programmes that will impact Selangor.

“I also stress on the importance of the principle of good governance in carrying duties and decision making process for Selangor. This includes the existing integrity system and accountability in the Selangor leadership. This must continue to be practised,” he said.

Sultan Sharafuddin also congratulated former Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali on his appointment as Economic Affairs Minister.

Meanwhile, newly minted Sungai Kandis assemblyman Mohd Zawawi Ahmad Mughni took his oath of office before Speaker Ng Suee Lim and Amirudin before the opening of the state assembly. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd