Crime & Courts

MAIPS files appeal to allow it to provide Islamic education to Loh's children

PUTRAJAYA: The Perlis Islamic Religious and Malay Customs Council  (MAIPs) has filed an appeal at the Court of Appeal to allow it to provide Islamic education to Hindu mother Loh Siew Hong's three children, said to be unilaterally converted to Islam by their father in 2020. 

MAIPs filed the petition of appeal at the Appellate Court on Friday (Oct 20).  

On Oct 10, High Court judge Hayatul Akmal Abdul Aziz in her ruling said in her interview with the children conducted in Bahasa Melayu, the twin girls, aged 15 and a boy aged 12, had objected to MAIPs having access to them. 

She described MAIPs application to provide religious education, attend Friday prayers and celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Aidiladha, as intrusive and not in the best interest of the children. 

She said MAIPs had failed to establish its case, adding that there was no reasonable or lawful justification. 

Hayatul said she had conducted separate interviews with the children and had told them to be truthful as it was to enable her to know their thoughts and wellbeing. 

She said from the short introduction before the interview commenced, she found the children had good command of the language, were polite, able to understand clearly and voiced their opinion well. 

The results of the interview with the siblings, she said, were similar. 

In 2019, Loh was hospitalised due to injuries inflicted by her ex-husband, Muhammad Nagahswaran Muniandy and this was when he took their children to Perlis. 

In 2020, he had converted them to Islam without Loh's consent. 

In Feb 2022, Judge Datuk Collin Lawrence Sequerah ordered the children, who were placed under department's care, to be returned to their mother. 

In May this year, Judge Datuk Wan Ahmad Farid Wan Salleh ruled that the unilateral conversion was valid. 

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