JOHOR BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - Johor's Crown Prince said on Monday (Feb 25) that he disagreed with the view of Malaysia's Education Minister Mazlee Malik who expressed support for having a branch of an Indonesian Islamic university in the southern state.
Mr Mazlee has said he is supportive of Indonesia's Universiti Muhammadiyah Prof Dr Hamka, or Uhamka, opening a branch in Pagoh, northern Johor.
But Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim said matters on Islam are under the purview of the Johor ruler, his father Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar.
"Secondly, this is seen as going against the state fatwa and there will certainly be confusion among the masses, causing a rift among Muslims in Johor," Tunku Ismail said in a statement posted on his official Facebook page.
The prince was apparently referring to previous edicts by Johor's Islamic authorities that reject the stance of the Muhammadiyah group - Indonesia's second largest Islamic organisation - on certain issues.
Muhammadiyah University has more than 10,000 employees handling 173 campuses located throughout Indonesia. Out of this total, 45 are full universities while the rest comprise secondary schools, academic centres and polytechnics.
Under the Malaysian Constitution, issues on Islam, land and water are under the purview of the state and its rulers, with the federal government needing state consent to step into such matters.