De facto Islamic affairs minister Mujahid Yusof Rawa said his ministry will continue to convince the various state religious departments to ban child marriages.
Mujahid said his ministry had conducted many discussions with several departments and came to the conclusion that the government of the day had all the authority to impose the ban.
“However, some states view child marriages as not something obligatory nor is it non-permissible to marry a minor,” Mujahid said.
“It’s in the middle so whether it is permissible or not depends on the situation,” he added.
“In such situations, we need to use the maxim that the government has the authority to ban child marriages to protect the bigger interest of society, but some states do not have the will to comply,” he said.
Mujahid was responding to news reports urging Putrajaya to intervene and deal with the seven states that have refused to ban child marriages.
These are Sarawak, Pahang, Terengganu, Perlis, Kedah and Kelantan, all of which are non-aligned with the Pakatan Harapan federal government. Negeri Sembilan under Harapan has also refused.
Mujahid said his ministry will raise the issue again via discussions with the Islamic Affairs Welfare Council which meets three times annually.
Mujahid said another platform where his ministry could convince the states to comply with the policy was by raising the issue with the respective state’s Islamic Department directors.
“The next level will be to bring this issue is the Rulers Council and if the rulers decide to adopt the policy (of banning child marriages), then the states under them would have to comply,” Mujahid said.
Earlier report: Nov 20, Seven States Refuse Child Marriage Ban