Not everyone took well to the Johor Sultan’s views against Muar’s Muslim-only launderette.
Malaysian Islamic Development Department (Jakim) officer, Zamihan Mat Zin, lashed out publicly through a video that has since gone viral, reported The Star.
He was arrested on Wednesday (Oct 11) as a result, and is now threatening to sue the media for “malicious and slanderous” reports.
Despite apologising to the Sultan, he continued to blame the media for “malicious and slanderous” reports misrepresenting his thoughts in a statement. He also threatened to take legal action if media outlets did not retract their articles on him and offer a public apology.
The video which first got Zamihan in troubled showed him saying that it was wrong for a sultan – understood to be referring to Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar – to ban Muslim-only establishments from operating in the state.
According to The Straits Times, Zamihan said: “There was a sultan who had said Muslim-friendly launderettes are not allowed in his state”.
“It’s not right for the sultan to say such things. These launderettes are meant to show that Muslims prioritise cleanliness,” The Star quoted him as saying.
Labelling Chinese as “unhygienic”, he added: “The elements of alcohol, dog and pork is all related to them. So, if they want to patronise a launderette, then patronise a normal launderette”.
Zamihan is known for his strong personal sentiments against Christians and those he classifies as “moderate Muslims”.
Following the controversy surrounding the video, the Jakim officer apologised to Johor’s Sultan, said the New Straits Times.
Zamihan said in a statement: “I offer prayers and apologies to His Majesty if my personal opinion had offended him”.