Gov’t saying polygamy is for sexually active men among reasons Islam misunderstood: Mukhriz Mahathir

Screenshot of the ‘polygamy’ text against a file photo of a man holding a woman’s hand in marriage. Photo: Coconuts
Screenshot of the ‘polygamy’ text against a file photo of a man holding a woman’s hand in marriage. Photo: Coconuts

MyGovernment today deleted content on Islamic polygamy from its website after it was called out by Jerlun MP Mukhriz Mahathir for misleading readers that the practice was meant for sexually active men.

That information was no longer available on the website when Coconuts checked this evening, a day after Mukhriz criticized it for saying that Muslim men could have multiple wives to fulfil their “incredible sense of sexual desire” if a wife could not fulfil his wishes. Screenshot of the government’s website was circulated on other platforms today.

Screenshot of the text on polygamy by MyGovernment
Screenshot of the text on polygamy by MyGovernment

Mukhriz, 56, who was also the son of former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad, pointed the website out on Instagram yesterday, saying that the information had left out several conditions that were required of Muslim men if they wish to engage in polygamy.

This is among the reasons why Islam is misunderstood,” he wrote in the caption of his post, later adding: “Where is the list of caveats to be imposed on the man intending to practise polygamy?”


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A post shared by Mukhriz Mahathir (@mukhrizmahathir)

The website was maintained by the Malaysian Administrative Modernisation and Management Planning Unit, or MAMPU, and provides information on public services related to marriage, tourism, IT, and education, among other things. MAMPU did not immediately respond to Coconuts’ request for comment.

Polygamy is allowed in Islam on the condition that the husband is able to care for all his wives financially, physically, and emotionally, among others. Each man is only allowed to have up to four wives. 

Under the government’s guide to Muslim marriages, it also noted that polygamy was a requirement for a husband whose wife “is always sick” or “cannot give birth due to health reasons,” and that one should marry women who have been widowed by husbands who died in the name of Islam “to uphold the religion of Allah.”

Editor’s note: This story was updated with the latest details about the MyGovernment website.

Other stories to check out:

Preacher says Muslims forbidden from using FaceApp’s gender-swapping filter

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