PUTRAJAYA – Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak today hailed the rise in the overall score of a Syariah index that gauges the country’s achievement in implementing Islamic policies and principles, saying there was drastic improvement in the health, infrastructure and the environment, and economic and social fields.
The Prime Minister also said that the score or achievement of the Malaysian Syariah Index in four other fields, namely education, politics, law and culture, remained at an encouraging level.
The index gauges objectively and scientifically Malaysia’s achievement according to the framework of Maqasid Syariah (objectives of Islamic law).
The overall score of the index for 2017 was 76.06 per cent, up by 0.64 per cent from the 75.42 per cent for 2015, he said when presenting the Malaysian Syariah Index Report 2017 at the Premier Conference of Ulama at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre here.
“Alhamdulillah (Praise be to God), this is an achievement we anticipated to continue to drive the government in administering the country according to Maqasid Syariah,” he said.
Najib said the second study of the Syariah index involved 222 researchers from six public universities and a total of 27,292 respondents, comprising 2,280 policy makers, 6,555 policy implementers and 18,457 members of the general public.
He drew attention to an interesting aspect of the index for 2017, of the respondents being Muslims and non-Muslims.
“Interestingly, 50 per cent of the respondents from the general public comprised people between the ages of 21 and 30, who are from the generation of the National Transformation 2050 (TN50), he said.
Najib said several key findings of the index for 2017 proved that the efforts and initiatives undertaken and being implemented by the government had an impact on the people and benefited them.
In the field of health, he said, the score in the religion aspect was 92 per cent based on the success of the government in providing facilities for worship at government clinics and hospitals besides expanding services and facilities through the opening of 1Malaysia Clinics.
The Prime Minister said the index for the infrastructure and environment field had been evaluated at 86.7 per cent based on the government efforts to prioritise the care for life in solid waste management as well as striking an overall balance in infrastructure development for the people, such as the Pan Borneo Highway traversing Sabah and Sarawak.
As for the social field, 82 per cent had been awarded in terms of religious care as the government always provided the people with facilities associated with religious activities in accordance with the Federal Constitution, he said.
On the economic field, which had been accorded 65.46 per cent, Najib said various initiatives had been implemented by the government to alleviate the burden faced by the people in terms of cost of living.
He also said that though the fundamentals of the Malaysian economic system were conventional, the government was constantly striving to adopt Syariah in the system in stages and that many of the country’s economic policies adhered to the Maqasid Syariah.
“More interestingly, in the property aspect, the index showed that the people were happy with the 1Malaysia People’s Aid (BR1M) and the 1Malaysia People’s Housing initiatives as they have helped to reduce their financial burden, he said.
In the field of politics, the study on the aspect of care for religion worked out a score of 92 per cent for having successfully placed Islam as the religion of the federation in ensuring the political stability of the country, he said.
At the event, the Prime Minister also announced a special government contribution of RM2 million to Islamic NGOs in recognition of their contribution and ongoing role in the process of nation-building.
Najib also presented the Lifelong Religious Personality Special Award to Perak Mufti Tan Sri Harussani Zakaria for his role in promoting Islam in Malaysia.
Pertubuhan Muafakat Sejahtera Masyarakat Malaysia (Muafakat) president Ismail Mina Ahmad and Aqsa Syarif deputy president Dr Fauziah Mohd Hassan were declared NGO Male Personality and NGO Female Personality, respectively.
Federation of Peninsular Malay Students (GPMS) president Zambri Mohd Isa was declared NGO Youth Personality.