Perlis mufti a key witness at ‘disappearance’ inquiry today

12th Apr 2018

PETALING JAYA: Perlis mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin will be a key witness to testify today at an inquiry into the disappearance of activist Amri Che Mat.

Amri, who co-founded the Perlis Hope organisation, has been missing since Nov 24, 2016.

The inquiry into his disappearance is being held by Suhakam, the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia.

Amri’s wife, Norhayati Ariffin previously told the inquiry that before Amri went missing he was concerned about a meeting that took place between the police and the Perlis Mufti’s Department about investigations into Perlis Hope.

She said that the Mufti had posted on Facebook thanking the police officer who attended the meeting.

Norhayati had also named two officers from the state fatwa office, and the state’s Islamic authorities, as among those she suspected of being involved in her husband’s disappearance.

In response to testimony in the inquiry, Asri was reported to have said that Amri was a Shia Muslim who practised mut’ah, a form of contract marriage not recognised in Malaysia, which can be summarily ended with the consent of both sides.

He has denied any suggestion linking him to Amri’s disappearance.

Norhayati had told the inquiry that Asri was among a team of some 20, comprising police and Perlis Mufti’s Department officers, who arrived at their home some time in 2015 to question Amri and to investigate the activities of Perlis Hope.

Asri admitted he was part of the team of officers, but said the visit took place in 2016, and that the meeting was also conducted peacefully.

Lawyers tomorrow will be looking at any links between Asri’s concerns about Amri being a Shia Muslim and the cooperation he received from the police as suggesting that the state might be involved in Amri’s disappearance.

Another witness at tomorrow’s inquiry is Perlis Islamic Department director Hazman Hassan.

The Suhakam inquiry is also investigating the disappearance of Pastor Joshua Hilmy and his wife, Ruth, who were last seen on Nov 30, 2016.

The inquiry had also looked into the case of Pastor Raymond Koh, who has been missing since Feb 13 last year after he was abducted by some 10 men in Petaling Jaya.

However, the inquiry could not continue with the Koh case after a suspect was charged with allegedly kidnapping the pastor.

Link to the article can be found here: