PETALING JAYA: PAS’ attempt to introduce hudud does not augur well for national unity, integration and harmony in the country, said Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Tan Sri Joseph Kurup.
He said arguments over hudud were not good for the building, strengthening and integration of national unity.
“Unity is the essential ingredient for us to advance as a nation. It is the bedrock for us to lean on for development, prosperity, harmony and happiness and we should preserve this,” Kurup, who is in charge of national unity, told The Star yesterday.
He said since the tragedy of May 13, 1969, the Government had introduced various programmes and initiatives to unite the people in Malaysia.
“We are a multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural society. When talk about hudud is brought up, it sends shivers among non-Muslims and they are not happy about it,” he said.
Kurup, who is also Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) chairman, said his party would reject any attempt to introduce hudud.
He said Sabah and Sarawak had agreed to the formation of Malaysia on the understanding that the country would remain a secular state.
He said three conditions were set before Sabah agreed to accept the formation of Malaysia in 1963: freedom of religion; the Sabah government to have full powers on matters related to the state; and that Sabah traditions and cultures be respected and preserved by the Government.
“We did not just talk about it, these were engraved on a stone, which still sits in the interior of Keningau.
“These were the undertakings when we agreed to form Malaysia, so any changes to this will be looked at very unfavourably,” he added.
Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) deputy president Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili said any move to implement or support hudud was against the spirit of the Federal Constitution and 1Malaysia.
Dr Ongkili, who is also Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister and Kota Marudu MP, urged other Barisan Nasional parties, including Umno, to make a strong stand against any move to introduce hudud.
“We are concerned that if we allow hudud in Kelantan, it will open the door for the law to be imposed on other races and in other states. We do not wish for it to come to that for the sake of Malaysia, all Malaysians and 1Malaysia,” he said.
Sabah Barisan National secretary Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said “extensive discussions” would be held among component parties if the contents of PAS’ proposed Private Member’s Bill were revealed.
“We need to scrutinise every sentence, word and comma so that we can have a better understanding of what the Bill is all about.”
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