Saturday, April 3, 2010

NU's Underage Marriage Fatwa

Are we becoming more and more fundamentalists ? That's the question I asked myself when I read on The Jakarta Post that the moderate largest Muslim organization Nahdlatul Ulama (N.U) has allowed underage marriage.

During its recent conference in Makasar, South Sulawesi, N.U issued a Fatwa/Edict which allow under age children to get married. The reason is because the Islamic Sariah Law does not rule the minimum age for marriage, thus different from the national Marriage Law No 1/1974 which ruled that the minimum age for a man is 18, and for a girl is 16.

Parents are allowed to marry off their under age children, although they are strongly appealed to carry out the marriage after the children reached puberty. The Fatwa also said that underage couples must abstain from sexual intercourse until their are mentally and psychically capable to do do.

This Edict was protested by the National Commission for the Protection of Children, who said that it is against the Child Protection Law Article 48 which forbid the marriage by underage children.

As I have stated time and again, although a Fatwa is not part of our national legal system, however considering N.U is the largest Muslim organization in Indonesia, its disciples would regard it and obey it as a law. Thus, in the end it will surely cause great confusion in our society.

Considering this fact, I hope that the new leaders of N.U headed by Dr. Said Agil Siraj would reconsider said Fatwa. 

14 comments:

Herdoni Wahyono said...

Sometimes there are differences in state laws and the Islamic sharia law. Which of them will we follow? This can cause a polemic in the community. When underage marriages conducted, then a formal law, their marriage is not recognized by the state. There is a logical consequence. As a good citizen of Indonesia, we should obey the state laws in the matter. Thank you for your sharing.

pj said...

I wasn't totally surprised by this ruling given the failure of the courts over the sheik Sheik Puji case a year or so ago. Maybe Indonesians are just become more misogynistic towards their daughters (re: uu porn)or are seeing them as assets to be sold off to the highest bidder. Or maybe the silent majority needs to make itself heard if they wish to stop this sort of nonsense.

H. Nizam said...

@Herdoni,
An intelligent comment my friend.
Indonesia is a national state, not a religious state. Based on our Constitution 1945 the valid laws are laws issued by the national government and parliament (DPR).
Marriage according to national law no. 1/1974 should be registered at the official registrar beside conducted according to religious law. Otherwise the marriage would not be legitimate (illegal), children from such marriage would be illegitimate too.


@PJ,
I totally agree with you that the fanatics are becoming audible and forceful everyday because the majority Muslims in Indonesia who are moderates have always been silent. Hopefully more of us will speak out very soon.

Aulawi Ahmad said...

i just can say nice info n tq 4 share :)

H. Nizam said...

Aulawi Ahmad,
Thank you for your visit and comment

Edwin's Personal Blog said...

It will be a homework for Mr. Siradj to resolve. Hope it will satisfy everything..

H. Nizam said...

Edwin,
I also think we should give NU new leaders some time especially that Dr Siraj used to be Gus Dur's second man.

H. Nizam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
colson said...

In my opinion PJ is right: "the silent majority needs to make itself heard if they wish to stop this sort of nonsense".

But it is not just that: the state of law demands only regular laws will rule. There should be no room for adat or shariah bylaws - that is if the country doesn't want to run the risk of disorientation and legal chaos.

H. Nizam said...

Colson,
It would be very ideal if only laws that govern society, but they cannot rule all things in life because people tend to change whilst it's not easy to make/change law. That's where religious and adat laws fill in as supplement. As long as they do not conflict with statute laws they can be acceptable. Even in other countries such things exist and adhered to.

Hdsence said...

salam,
nice blog and artikel.
english version yap..
^_*

H. Nizam said...

Hsence,
Thanks a lot, I am very glad that you like my blog.

Munir Ardi said...

I just say the battle is begin and congrats to police departement

H. Nizam said...

Munir Ardi,
Sorry to say Pak, but I believe that the comment should be for another post. But it's okay, we should congratulate the police.