Johor govt keeping tabs on Shi'ite followers

Photo of a mosque in Pakistan.

JOHOR BARU - The Johor government is closely monitoring several groups believed to be involved in spreading Shi'ite teaching here.

State religious executive committee chairman Abd Mutalip Abd Rahim said that despite the groups slowing down in their activities over the last few months, the authorities would still keep tabs on them.

He added that the state government, through the state Islamic Religious Department (JAIJ), were working closely with the police to monitor the groups.

"We have identified these groups where some of their members are professionals, including those working as civil servants," he said to reporters at a Majlis Multaqa Ulama Ilmuan Darul Ta'zim here Thursday.

When asked if any politicians or certain individuals are part of the group, Abd Mutalip declined to give out their names as investigations were still ongoing.

He warned that the authorities would take stern action against the groups if they did not stop spreading Shi'ite teaching.

"JAIJ has conducted dialogue sessions and even given their members counselling but we noticed that many of them are still adamant to spread Shi'ite teaching.

"Spreading Shi'ite teaching is quite dangerous as it will create disunity within the Muslim community in Johor.

"We urge those with information related to the groups to contact the authorities," Abd Mutalip said.

At the event, Abd Mutalip said they had handed out several resolutions to the state government, including the formation of a religious Islamic education department.