International Journal of Humanities and Social Science

ISSN 2220-8488 (Print), 2221-0989 (Online) 10.30845/ijhss

Malaysian News Report on Muslim Converts’ Issues: A Study on Malaysiakini*
Mohd. Nizam Sahad, Siti Aishah Chu Abdullah, Suhaila Abdullah

Issues involving the Muslim converts are numerous and complex. Among them are the challenges of understanding Islam as a religion, welfare and psychological pressure from their family, foster family and society as well as psychological pressure to adapt to the new religion (M.Y. Jaafar, 1991, p. 55-56; Lokman Ab. Rahman, 1995, p. 62-66; Nur A’thiroh Masyaa’il Tan Abdullah & Fariza Md. Sham, 2009, p. 84). However, this study focuses on issues concerning the Muslim converts which were published in a Malaysian on-line newspaper. This study reports the findings of content analysis in a quantitative and qualitative aspects where news report and the way of news reporting on Muslim converts’ issues were explored in a selected Malaysian newspaper. Newspaper articles on the issues regarding Muslim converts which were published in Malaysiakini from 2007 to 2011 were compiled and analyzed based on a coding protocol (in terms of the category of Muslim converts’ issues and tone of articles’ headlines). Those newspaper articles were analyzed to evaluate the news category of Muslim converts’ issues that have been identified and propose a more effective form of preaching mechanism in dealing with Muslim converts’ issues in Malaysia. Results showed a high statistical fact on positively-toned headlines of articles on Muslim converts in Malaysiakini within the five-year period. Thus, the study concluded that Malaysiakini did perform the mentor role of transmitting appropriate information to its readers. Moreover, the Malaysian government and Islamic religious bodies should also play their roles in addressing issues on Muslim converts accordingly.

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