The al-Arqam cult may have long ceased to exist, but its ideologies have been nurtured and kept alive within the confines of the Rufaqa’ movement.
Eight former al-Arqam members disclosed this at a press conference organised by the Selangor Islamic Affairs Department (Jais) yesterday. Also present was state executive councillor in charge of religious affairs Datuk Abdul Rahman Palil.
One of them, Ahmad Salim Umar, said that even though the Government had banned the movement in 1994, many of its members had worked hard to keep its founder Ashaari Muhammad’s doctrine alive.
“Al-Arqam never died,” said Ahmad Salim, 50, who claimed he was a top al-Arqam leaders when he was detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA) in 1994.
According to Ahmad Salim, a former deputy director of the Federal Territory land office, many of the banned sect’s former members had joined the new movement, which operated as Rufaqa’ Corporation Sdn Bhd.