Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Moderation and unity can start at home - The STAR

PETALING JAYA: Malaysians should invite their friends of different races formakan-makan gatherings at their houses as a reason to mingle, bond and nurture moderation and unity.
Anas Zubedy said the suggestion was part of this year’s #SaySomethingNice campaign that began on National Day. It ends on Malaysia Day on Sept 16.
The annual campaign, founded by Anas, is a movement towards unity in line withThe Star’s “Voices of Moderation” effort.
“We should take the opportunity to host a muhibah gathering,” said Anas, who is Zubedy (M) Sdn Bhd managing director. “Do a pot-luck, organise a barbecue, plan a makan-makan with your friends of various backgrounds and their families.
“Such a platform will give the children an opportunity to mix and mingle with people of different races and faiths,” he added.
This idea, he said, was mooted by an ardent advocate of unity, Dr G. Bala.
“As moderate Malaysians, we should work towards making Malaysia better and more united.
“We can start by doing small –meaningful actions like allowing our homes to be the grounds that nurture moderation, unity and love in our children with parents providing the platform,” said Anas, who is one of The Star’s moderate voices.
Malaysian children, he said, were already separated by the schools they went to and the places where they played.
“Because of this, they do not have the chance to get to know one another. Let our homes be the grounds they can engage each other,” said Anas, urging Malaysians to be responsible towards the future ge­neration.
“Let’s make our children love each other better. We want them to be friends, not foes,” he added.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Kempen #Servesomethingnice terima sambutan menggalakan - ASTRO Awani

Golongan belia menyemarakkan semangat 1Malaysia - ASTRO Awani

#SaySomethingNice 2014 OFFICIALLY LAUNCHED

The #SaySomethingNice campaign organized by zubedy (m) sdn bhd had been officially launched by YB Tan Sri Datuk Seri Panglima Joseph Kurup at Tropicana City Mall with many partners and supporters of the campaign in attendance last Tuesday, 26 August 2014. 

Below are some coverage of the launch:
  1. 'Moderation campaign lauded - The STAR
  2. Don't let our differences divide us - Joseph Kurup - Astro Awani
  3. 'NUCC analyses national unity info to become action plan - Kurup' - Bernama
  4. Spreading the joy of giving and sharing - The Sun Daily 
  5. Council may turn national unity info into action plan- The Borneo Post
  6. Bigotry on the rise, says minister - Rakyat Times
Additionally, there will be more projects to be organized this year to truly celebrate the call for unity through the #SaySomethingNice campaign. Among the projects are:


We are scouting for 12 - 40 volunteers to assist Kechara Soup Kitchen distributes food to the homeless and urban poor in Kuala Lumpur. There will be 2 different slots on Saturday nights, which are on 6 September 2014 to 13 September 2014. Public can also sponsor a slot by donating the cost needed to buy food and necessities for the homeless and urban people. Contact Dayana ( at 03 - 7733 6419 to place donation or volunteer. 


We are planning to build a Malaysian Unity map made up of the faces of diverse Malaysians. Hence, we encourage public to share their selfies for the purpose. Selfies can be shared as many as possible via:
  1. #SaySomethingNice Facebook page at
  2. Own Instagram account with the hashtag #SelfieSomethingNice
  3. WhatsApp the selfies to 019 - 226 1106
  4. Email the selfies to

#EatSomethingNice is a collaboration with Mr William Huee Thing Hoa, who has visited over 1000 schools to deliver talks on healthy eating and the ill-effects of junk food. During the 17-day campaign period, Mr William will be on a talk circuit to 10 schools. 


#RM10SomethingNice is a crowdfunding initiative under the #SaySomethingNice campaign to help fund Kechara Soup Kitchen and Mr William Huee's #EatSomethingNice project.  As an organisation with a keen passion for Unity, we as the organiser feel compelled to realise and assist Kechara Soup Kitchen and Mr William Huee in their charitable efforts. To join, public can donate through:


Collaborating with #TamakPahala, the organizer of #FreeMarketTTDI, #ShopSomethigNice allows the less fortunate to 'shop' for necessities - for free! The free market gathers and offers pre-owned items that are still in good conditions, which others can still benefit from its use. The free market will be hosted at Dataran Petaling Jaya and everyone can help donate as much items as possible. To donate or to know more about this project, contact Freida ( or Aby (


In addition, this year zubedy will also collect unused items/pre-owned items still in good condition to be handed over to the identified individuals/NGOs/soup kitchens for the #CollectSomethingNice project. The items will also be donated for the Free Market project #ShopSomethingNice. Distribution of items will be done on August 30th and 31st – a tie-in with #ServeSomethingNice. This is an initiative by Zubedy. To place your donation or to volunteer, you may contact Dayana ( or Rina ( at 03 - 7733 6419. You can also call her for further inquiries.

For more information about the campaign or projects, please contact Miss 'Aizat Roslan at 03 - 7733 6919 / 019 - 357 0699 or via email at

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Mujahid and Saifuddin share ‘independent’ views across political divide by Alyaa Alhadjri - The Ant Daily

MERDEKA FOCUS: As Malaysia celebrates her 57th year of independence from 
British rule this year, remnants of the past are still apparent in the country's 
administration, starting with the Westminster system of Parliament. 
In Parliament, most major decisions are determined by the Chief Whip (from 
Barisan Nasional) and votes will be cast along partisan lines, effectively silencing 
any dissenting "independent" views.
The nature of politics in Malaysia is also such that it is often very difficult, if not i
mpossible, for leaders from opposing factions to be seen to be in agreement with 
each other. 
This, however, has not stopped Global Movement of Moderates CEO Datuk 
Saifuddin Abdullah (a former Umno MP and deputy minister) and PAS’ Parit 
Buntar MP Mujahid Yusof Rawa from forming a friendship that led to their 
collaboration under various cross-partisan platforms. 
In an interview with theantdaily, Saifuddin said he first met Mujahid in 2008 
when both of them were first-term Parliamentarians.
"We never knew each other until we met in Parliament ... When we first met we 
just said 'salam, apa khabar' and that's it, until I published my book (in January 
2009) on new politics," he recalled, adding that his book was titled "New Politics: 
Maturing Democracy in Malaysia".
"He (Mujahid) read my book, he commented on it (and) then (in May 2009) he 
published his own book, also about new politics titled 'The New Face of Malaysian 
Politics'," said Saifuddin.
Saifuddin noted that both of them had been writing about new politics since even 
before they became MPs, through his column in Berita Harian and Mujahid on his 
blog, but only realising their mutual interests after having read each other's book. 
"I rearranged my column to become a book and he rearranged his blog posts to 
become a book," he added. 
Despite being a deputy minister at the time, Saifuddin is known to speak against 
his own party's line, a trait which gained him popularity among middle-ground 
Malaysians but cost him his political career -- having lost his Temerloh seat 
during the 13th general election and also his position in Umno's Supreme Council. 
"He (Mujahid) was not quoted so much at that time in the mainstream media 
but sometimes I saw (his statements) on online media and I thought, 'Eh! We 
seem to be talking about the same things'," said Saifuddin, who cited as an 
example, Mujahid's support for his proposal to amend Section 
15 of the University and University Colleges Act 1971.
While Saifuddin is now no longer in Parliament, he said he continues to engage 
with Mujahid on Twitter (among other platforms): "Even before GE13 we were 
already tweeting. He retweeted (RT) me, I retweeted him, he favourited my 
It was also through Twitter that the duo crossed path with Anas Zubedy 
(businessman, author and founder of 'Zubedy') who proposed that they
co-author a book on new politics. 

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Substance over form, intent over law by Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf - The STAR (Part 2)

Upholding the intent of God’s law should be the common ground of a modern and diverse Muslim ummah, says Imam Feisal in Part 2 of his reply to a father whose daughter decided to uncover her head just before her university graduation.
In the Quran, God says, “…let them draw their head-coverings over their cleavages” (24:31). These head-coverings, or khumur (the plural of khimar), refer to the head-coverings customarily used by Arab women before and after the advent of Islam. Even men wore them for protection in the hot desert sun. Women also typically wore tunics with a wide opening in the front that left the breasts exposed.
With this understanding, the injunction to cover the cleavage with a khimar does not refer to the compulsory use of a khimar as a head-covering, but rather is only meant to specify that a woman’s cleavage is not included in the definition of “what may (decently) be apparent.”
The word for “cleavage” is juyub, the plural of jayb, often translated as “cleavage.”Jayb literally means “pocket.” Women traditionally “pocketed” money and other small items in their cleavage, which prosperous Meccan women, like their Western 18th and 19th century counterparts, used to accentuate. This injunction therefore cautions against exposure that might put them at risk of harm. 
From the hadith and other historic sources, we learn that it was normative at the Prophet’s time for upper-class women not to breastfeed their own children. They hired Bedouin wet nurses or called upon their slave women for this task. It was normative for these working women to expose their head and neck, their arms below the elbows, their legs below the knees while performing their work, and their breasts while breastfeeding, which was done in public as well.
There are several hadith where the Prophet sees a woman breastfeeding, and his silence (sunna taqririyya, or tacit consent) indicates that he deemed public breastfeeding acceptable.
Furthermore, because slave women frequently went bareheaded in public, scholars held that they could pray bareheaded as well. In fact, all the madhhabsunanimously agreed that a slave woman’s prayer with her head uncovered was valid. Because the requirements of salah are not different for free believers and for slaves, some Muslim scholars conclude that covering the head cannot be a requirement for any woman of any class in order for her prayer to be valid.
These reasons form the basis of the third and fourth juridical positions. They are also the basis for why a woman is not required to cover her head, either in public or in prayer.

To wear scarf or not to wear scarf By Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf - The STAR (Part 1)

When Imam Feisal wrote on hudud in his column Peace Be Upon Us last month, a concerned father wrote for advice, saying his daughter had decided, based on her study of the Quran and the hadith, to remove the headscarf she had been brought up wearing, just before her university graduation. He shares his views here.
IT is important, first of all, to recognise that your daughter’s convictions and your concerns both come from well-intentioned, considered places. Though your opinions may be different, you and your daughter are both striving to live in accordance with God’s law and to do right by each other. This common ground is profound and sacred, and from what I read in your letter, there is no question that you and your daughter share it.
The Prophet said that differences of opinion among his ummah are a blessing to the community. In light of this hadith, traditional Muslim societies created the space for acknowledging and institutionalising such differences of legal opinion, which is why we have four major Sunni schools of jurisprudence (madhhabs of-fiqh), all considered valid. Today, however, we find that the space for these legitimate differences of opinion has collapsed, which has contributed to tensions among Muslims, including your family.
The task of our modern Muslim ummah is to remember and re-establish its legal tradition, and to recognise that differences of opinion are a manifestation of Divine and Prophetic mercy. We are advised not to rush in judging the practices of other Muslims, who are in fact often following the opinions established by the great founders of the major schools of jurisprudence.
As you and your daughter have discovered, the madhhabs have differing opinions on whether women are required to wear headscarves and other coverings. I will try to summarise the differences between them and the reasons for these differences.
Jurists have defined two kinds of `awrah: the part of the body that should be covered in the presence of a marriageable person of the opposite sex, which generally means in public, and the part of the body that should be covered in order for prayer to be valid. As we shall see below, the requirements for the first definition tend to be more conservative, and more subject to varying societal custom and fluctuating norms, than the second definition.
The above definitions refer to when the body should be covered, and there are different juridical positions on what parts of the body should be covered at these times. These positions in order, from most conservative to most liberal, are as follows:
The niqab, where the whole body is completely covered (including the face, hands, and feet). However, Classical jurists do not consider the niqab as applying to anyone except the wives of the Prophet.
> Only the face, hands, and feet may be exposed.
> The areas above the neck, below the elbows, and below the knees may be exposed.
> The areas above the navel and below the knees may be exposed.
There is basis in Syariah for these positions, but in order to understand the relevant injunctions, and hence the different positions, we have to understand the social norms at the time of the Prophet.
In the Prophet’s time, social class dictated women’s dress codes. Therefore, the rules on `awrah for the Prophet’s wives differed from the average Muslim lady woman, which in turn differed from the rules for Bedouin women and slave women. The differences in these societal rules are the reason that the juridical positions are different.
For the Prophet’s wives, the Quran required them not to engage with other men who sought their advice except from behind a hijab (33:53). The word hijab means anything that stands between two things, or that conceals and protects one thing from the other. In this context, hijab may be interpreted as “screen,” “barrier,” “curtain,” or “veil,” or another such divide, meant to protect the Prophet’s wives. This injunction defined the `awrah for their interactions in public, but not for their prayers in the privacy of their chambers.
Verse 33:53 was prompted by specific scandals. While the Prophet was still alive, Talha ibn Ubaydallah publicly voiced his intention to marry the Prophet’s revered young wife Aisha once the Prophet died. And in a more serious scandal, Safwan bin Muattal rescued Aisha from a battlefield and carried her back home to Medina, triggering accusations of adultery, which were later dispelled by the Quran (24:11). To prevent further controversy, and to protect them from objectification and pursuit by other men, the Prophet’s wives were to interact with men only from behind a hijab, and men were forbidden to marry them after the Prophet’s death.
Muslim jurists emphasise that the term hijab is not used here to refer specifically to covering the head or any other part of the body, nor is there any commandment in the Quran for women to cover their face or head, either in public or in prayer. The term hijab is used seven times in the Quran, but never in explicit reference to the dress code for the Prophet’s wives, let alone for women in general. The word is used in the sense of a “barrier” or “screen,” for example between Heaven and Hell (7:46) or between the Prophet and unbelievers (17:45).
At the time, donning a protective veil was customary in the neighbouring region of Mesopotamia (modern Iraq), where ordinary folk were prohibited from looking upon the faces of royalty. Royalty were therefore completely veiled in public as a sign of their status, and slave women were even prohibited from wearing a veil. The Prophet’s wives donned a similar hijab for protection.
The Quran’s explicit directive in 33:53 explains the origin of the niqab argued by the first juridical position, but it is also the reason why classical jurists argue that the niqab was only intended for the Prophet’s wives.
In another verse (24:31, God says, “Tell the believing women to lower their gaze and to be mindful of their chastity, and not to display their charms beyond what may be (decently) apparent thereof; hence, let them draw their head-coverings over their bosoms”.
This passage is the basis for the second juridical position, which argues that only the face, hands, and feet may be exposed. There are other arguments used to defend this position, but Muslim jurists consider them questionable and less convincing.