Acceptance Speech By Award Winner 2014

02 Sep 2014

السلام عليكم ورحمة الله وبركاته

And good evening

الحمد لله رب العالمين والصلاة والسلام على سيد المرسلين وعلى آله وصحبه أجمعين

Menghadap Seri Paduka Baginda Yang Di-Pertuan Agong, Almu’tasimu Billahi Muhibbuddin Tuanku Al’Haj Abdul Halim Mu’adzam Shah ibni Almarhum Sultan Badlishah,

Menghadap Seri Paduka Baginda Raja Permaisuri Agong Tuanku Hajjah Haminah,

Menghadap DYMM Paduka Seri Sultan Perak Darul Ridzuan Sultan Nazrin Muizzuddin Shah,

Menghadap DYMM Raja Permaisuri Perak Darul Ridzuan Tuanku Zara Salim,

Ampun Tuanku.

Patik mendoakan semoga Seri Paduka Baginda Tuanku berdua dan DYMM Paduka Seri Sultan berdua sentiasa berada di dalam pemeliharaan Allah S.W.T. dengan penuh kemuliaan dan kebesarannya.

Amin Ya Rabbal Alamin.

Patik mohon limpah perkenan Seri Paduka Baginda Tuanku berdua dan DYMM Paduka Seri Sultan berdua bagi patik untuk menyampaikan sepatah dua kata kepada para tetamu yang turut hadir menyerikan majlis malam ini dalam Bahasa Inggeris. 

Ampun Tuanku.

Yang Amat Berbahagia Tun Musa Hitam, Chairman of the Jury for the Royal Award for Islamic Finance;

Yang Berbahagia Tan Sri Dr Zeti Akhtar Aziz, Governor, Central Bank of Malaysia;

Yang Berbahagia Datuk Ranjit Ajit Singh, Chairman, Securities Commission Malaysia;

Your Excellencies;

Yang Amat Berbahagia Tun-Tun;

Yang Berbahagia Tan Sri-Tan Sri;

Yang Berbahagia Datuk-Datuk;

Distinguished Guests;

Ladies and Gentlemen.

First and foremost I would like to offer my utmost Shukor, gratitude and thanks to the Al-Mighty Allah SWT on his enormous bounty, that he has bestowed upon me by making me the recipient of the royal award for Islamic Finance 2014.  I humbly, pray to Allah S.W.T for His guidance to do the correct act of Shukor, and for His forgiveness if I fall short of doing so.         

Second, I would like to offer my thanks and gratitude to the Chairman of the Jury of the Royal Award for Islamic Finance, Bank Negara Malaysia, and Securities Commission Malaysia, and Government of Malaysia for making this award possible.         

Third, I would like to thank my colleagues and friends who worked with me in various institutions throughout my career in Islamic Banking and Finance. Without their dedication, hard work and cooperation, I would not be able to achieve much. 

Lastly, my thanks and my love to my wife and my family. 

Ampun Tuanku,       

After immersing myself for almost thirty years in Islamic Banking and Finance, and moving about during that period in four different institutions, I have formed certain impressions on the progress of Islamic Banking and Finance in relation to the Muslims and people of Malaysia. I shall now briefly, talk on one of these impressions.

Until the 1980’s, that is around 30 years ago, economically speaking to be a Muslim is to stagnate.  You absolutely could not make any economic progress.  You could not put your money in the banks.  You could not buy insurance.  You could not invest in the capital markets.  Neither could you deal in exports or imports, or invest overseas.

A similar situation existed in respect of Government banking and financial operations of lending, borrowing and investing.

You could not do anything without coming up with receiving or paying al-Riba (interest or usury), or facing a situation of al-Gharar (uncertainty in contractual terms) or buying and selling forbidden items and suchlike prohibitions in Shariah. 

Clearly, Muslim were for centuries then faced with a big dilemma.  Their choice was then stick to Shariah and forget about economic progress; or pursue economic progress and abandon Shariah.  Both choices would entail disastrous results.

Then, beginning in the 1980’s, we in Malaysia, like Muslims in many other countries, began to build Islamic banking and finance.  And, Al-Hamdu Lillah, within 20 to 30 years the Muslim community in Malaysia and the world over have been able to completely change the scenario. 

In brief, today, Muslims in Malaysia, and elsewhere, may put their money in various Shariah-compliant instruments in their Islamic banks, avail themselves of various Takaful facilities, invest in various instruments in the Islamic capital market, invest abroad, etc.  Similarly there were a widely available Shariah facilities and products for Government banking and financial operations.

The Muslims are no longer in a dilemma.  They can now push for economic development, and at the same time attain Ridzwan Allah (the pleasure of Allah).

While this is not a Revolution, perhaps it may qualify as a Reformation.  In some other societies, this process might take a far longer time.

My impression is therefore this:

Muslims appear to be able to work quietly to transform their societies domestically, regionally, and at the Ummah level towards a betterment of their societies which a reasonably short span of time.

Ampun tuanku,

Sekian sahajalah persembahan ucapan daripada patik dan sekali lagi patik dengan penuh hormat dan takzim merafak sembah menjunjung kasih yang tidak terhingga di atas perkenan Seri Paduka Baginda Tuanku berdua serta DYMM Paduka Seri Sultan berdua berangkat mencemar duli ke majlis pada malam ini.

Sekian, wabillahitaufik walhidayah wassalamualaikum warohmatullahi wabarakatu.

Ampun Tuanku.

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