The G25 notes with concern the Malaysian government’s hysterical attitude towards Nur Sajat for being transgender and dressing as a woman to openly display her beauty and exercise her basic rights.
Authorities are becoming paranoid that Nur Sajat could be an inspiration to other transgender people to assert their human rights as what they were born into.
The authorities do not respect the fundamental rights of Nur Sajat and other transgender people guaranteed by the Federal Constitution. Now that Nur Sajat has escaped Bangkok and seeks refuge in Australia, Malaysia will once again be in the world news as a country that has its own standards of human rights and justice that are not based on the universal values of individual freedoms and human dignity. .
Recent calls in parliament to subject LGBT people to conversion therapy, which aims to change a person’s sexual orientation or gender identity, are not only unethical, but are also potentially dangerous .
Existing discriminatory laws, attitudes and practices towards the LGBT community can potentially endanger their lives by inciting harmful acts and even violence against them.
In recent years, Malaysia has attracted a lot of negative press internationally for its treatment of LGBT people at a time when the country is also embracing the importance of complying with and adhering to global ESG (environmental, social and governance) to attract foreign investment. Respect for diversity and human rights are key elements of ESG principles.
Based on media reports, G25 understands that Nur Sajat is charged under Section 10 (a) of the Syariah (Selangor) Criminal Offenses Act 1995 for disguising himself as a woman during of a religious ceremony and therefore, supposedly, “(a) insults or contempt for the religion of Islam.
The G25 respectfully urges the Islamic religious authority of Selangor to consider dropping the charge against Nur Sajat because, under Article 30 of the Syariah Criminal Offenses Act (Selangor), the act of cross-dressing in itself (transvestites per se) is not an offense.
Cross-dressing would only be an offense if it was for an immoral purpose. This means that the simple act of dressing up as a transgender person is allowed.
In the case of Nur Sajat, being a transgender, the act of cross-dressing is not for an immoral purpose. Therefore, with regard to religious authority, in light of article 30, it was inappropriate that Nur Sajat was charged under article 10 (a) of the law.
From the beginning, the position of the G25 has been consistent with regard to the application of Islamic laws in this country. In our very first open letter of December 7, 2014, we said, among other things, that religious organizations appear to assert their authority in a way that undermines the country’s commitment to democratic principles and the rule of law, which in turn affect peace and stability. of our nation.
The G25 continues to believe that Malaysia’s Syariah Criminal Offenses Laws (SCO), which turn all manner of “sins” into crimes against the state, have caused confusion and disagreement on both substance and implementation. implemented.
As a multiracial and multicultural country, Malaysia cannot afford to be held hostage to the strict interpretation of Islamic doctrines if we are to become a fully developed country as envisioned by the government’s development planning policies.