KOTA BARU: PAS needs to give a detailed explanation on why it is moving a Private Member’s Bill in Parliament to pave the way for hudud punishment to be enforced in Kelantan, said state Umno chief Datuk Seri Mustapa Mohamad.
He added that it was important for PAS to give its explanation if it wanted the support of both the Muslim and non-Muslim MPs to implement the Syariah Penal Code and to ensure it was effectively enforced statewide.
“If this is not done, such a Bill will meet obstacles even before it is tabled in Parliament,” Mustapa, who is International Trade and Industry Minister, said at the Sultan Ismail Petra Airport here yesterday.
“In my opinion, Muslim MPs need to provide a detailed explanation to their non-Muslim peers to ensure they (non-Muslims) understand what hudud is all about to avoid national polemics and tension that can threaten harmony among the various ethnic groups,” said Mustapa.
He said Umno had no problem with hudud but the party’s supreme council had yet to convene a meeting to discuss the issue.
“I am sure the top party leaders will seriously look into the matter,” he added.
Deputy Mentri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Abdullah, who heads the state hudud technical committee, said Kelantan needed to get the green light from the Dewan Rakyat to enforce the Syariah Penal Code, which was passed by the state legislative assembly in 1993.
PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang, who is Marang MP, had said he would table the Bill to get the Dewan Rakyat’s approval for the law and another Bill to amend the constitution to provide for the Bill.
DAP and PKR officials had criticised the PAS move, saying this was not included in the agreement among the Opposition parties.
Despite the objections and criticisms, PAS central working committee member Nasrudin Hassan said PAS would go ahead and enforce the Islamic penal code, and would respond only when it received “official complaints” from its allies.
In response, DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang was reported to have said the DAP had not changed its position on hudud as it felt the Penal Code did not suit Malaysia’s diverse society.
In Kuala Lumpur, Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin said: “Any MP can bring forward a Private Member’s Bill to the Dewan Rakyat but whether or not it is debated depends on the order of the business with regard to parliamentary proceedings.
“I have yet to see a Private Member’s Bill debated in the Dewan Rakyat,” he said after a Permodalan Usahawan Nasional Bhd’s Biz Plan Challenge 2013 prize-giving ceremony here yesterday.
A group, known as Jaringan Cina Malaysia, said the DAP had not officially objected to the PAS plan to move a motion on hudud in Parliament.
Jaringan head Ng Lum Yong challenged Lim to act on his party’s stand on the issue.
He claimed that Lim and the party would eventually support the controversial law.
“Lim will not oppose hudud for fear of upsetting PAS supporters in Penang (where his son Guan Eng is chief minister).