KUALA LUMPUR - National carrier Malaysia Airlines (MAS) invited Allah’s wrath by serving alcohol and letting its stewardess wear “sexy uniforms”, a senior Islamic cleric said.
Perak deputy mufti Zamri Hashim said MAS should be “shariah-compliant” and play a role in introducing foreigners to Malaysia’s “Islamic identity”, joining a chorus of those who made the same call after the double airline tragedies of flight MH370 and MH17.
“It is time for MAS to standardise its operations in line with syarak,” Zamri said in an article posted yesterday on the website of Islamist group Ikatan Muslimin Malaysia (Isma), using the Malay word for the Islamic moral code.
“The alcohol served, or even the offer to purchase alcohol inflight has exposed the whole plane to Allah’s wrath,” added the religious scholar who is also a member of Isma’s Ulama Council (Muis).
Zamri also pointed out to other similar calls to remove alcohol and the current uniform, saying the two will not bring more profit to the ailing carrier.
“We have to remember, it is not liquor and lewd appearance which will bring profit, but instead Islamic character and the adherence to shariah which will attract blessings from Allah,” he said.
He urged MAS to stop following global “cultural standards” or trends, which he alleged was forced upon Muslim countries.
“Islam as a universal way of life has never separated the commercial flight sector from the guidance of syarak,” claimed Zamri.
Zamri joined the call of Umno Youth, which urged MAS yesterday to stop serving alcohol on flights and to mandate the use of headscarves for Muslim flight attendants as part of the struggling carrier’s restructuring process.
Umno Youth executive councillor Dazma Shah Daud said the airline’s new management should not be afraid of making such changes as it is no longer deemed taboo to wear a headscarf, Malay daily Sinar Harian reported yesterday.
Sinar Harian also quoted Umno Youth religious bureau chairman Azmir Yuzaimi Mohd Yunos as saying that MAS and other airlines operating in multi-cultural Malaysia should stop serving alcohol on flights as it was against Islam.
MAS Employees Union executive secretary Mohd Jabbarullah Abd Kadir also reportedly supported Umno Youth’s proposal for the national carrier to stop serving alcohol and to make the flight attendants’ uniform more modest.
PAS women’s wing chief Siti Zailah Mohd Yusof had repeatedly made similar calls in Parliament previously, insisting as recent as last month that no MAS passenger “should die in sin”.
International financial site Bloomberg reported this week that loss-making MAS was considering replacing the airline’s chief executive officer Ahmad Jauhari Yahya, and is planning a series of layoffs as well as reviewing aircraft orders, as part of the restructuring measures following the airline’s two aviation disasters earlier this year. -Malay Mail