The Jakarta Post
Religious Affairs Minister Lukman Hakim Saifuddin has said that he is against the intimidation of religious preachers, including ustadz (Muslim teacher) Abdul Somad.
“There must be no deterrence, intimidation or any other disturbances that threaten the security and safety of religious preachers,” he said on Tuesday as quoted by tempo.co.
Lukman said that such acts were not allowed as long as sermons were educational, enlightening and broadened religious knowledge as well as strengthened unity.
He said he had communicated with the police on putting a stop to threats and intimidation against religious preachers.
On Sunday, Abdul Somad announced via his official Instagram account that he had canceled his religious outreach events in some part of Java Island.
The cancellation was made because of alleged threats and intimidation from people in the Central Java regencies of Grobogan, Kudus, Jepara and Semarang.
"The burden of the committee is getting heavier. [It has affected] the psychological condition of myself and the participants," Somad claimed.
"Therefore, I have canceled several events in Central Java, East Java and Yogyakarta."
Somad was nominated by a group of Islamic preachers to be the running mate of presidential candidate Prabowo Subianto but the ustadz refused the offer.