Assalamualaikum and Happy Ramadhan al-Mubarak,
Please find enclosed the Central Bank of Malaysia Bill 2009 for your reference. This Bill is really significant to Islamic finance industry in Malaysia as it involves some major amendment to the existing legal frameworks particularly Part VII section 51-60. I highlight several essential provisions pertaining to the Shari’ah Advisory Council.
Section 53. Appointment of members to Shariah Advisory Council
53. (1) The Yang di-Pertuan Agong may, on the advice of the Minister after consultation with the Bank, appoint from amongst persons who are qualified in the Shariah or who have knowledge or experience in the Shariah and in banking, finance, law or such other related disciplines as members of the Shariah Advisory
(2) If a judge of the High Court, the Court of Appeal or the Federal Court, or a judge of the Shariah Appeal Court of any State or Federal Territory, is to be appointed under subsection (1), such appointment shall not be made except— (a) in the case of a judge of the High Court, the Court of Appeal or the Federal Court, after consultation by the Bank with the Chief Justice; and (b) in the case of a judge of the Shariah Appeal Court of any State or Federal Territory, after consultation by the Bank with the Chief Shariah Judge of the respective State or Federal Territory, as the case may be.
(3) A member of the Shariah Advisory Council appointed under subsection (1) shall hold office on such terms and conditions as may be provided in their respective letters of appointment, and shall be eligible for reappointment.
(4) The members of the Shariah Advisory Council shall be paid such remuneration and allowances as may be determined by the Board from the funds of the Bank.
Section 56. Reference to Shariah Advisory Council for ruling from court or arbitrator
56. (1) Where in any proceedings relating to Islamic financial business before any court or arbitrator any question arises concerning a Shariah matter, the court or the arbitrator, as the case may be, shall—
(a) take into consideration any published rulings of the Shariah Advisory Council; or
(b) refer such question to the Shariah Advisory Council for its ruling.
(2) Any request for advice or a ruling of the Shariah Advisory Council under this Act or any other law shall be submitted to the secretariat.
Section 57. Effect of Shariah rulings
57. Any ruling made by the Shariah Advisory Council pursuant to a reference made under this Part shall be binding on the Islamic financial institutions under section 55 and the court or arbitrator making a reference under section 56.
Section 58. Shariah Advisory Council ruling prevails
58. Where the ruling given by a Shariah body or committee constituted in Malaysia by an Islamic financial institution is different from the ruling given by the Shariah Advisory Council, the ruling of the Shariah Advisory Council shall prevail.
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Fujairah, United Arab Emirates.