Ngeh's statement on non-Muslim inclusion insensitive, divisive, says PAS

PETALING JAYA: PAS has slammed DAP's Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham as being both divisive and provocative over his suggestion to have a non-Muslim legal expert included in the special committee studying the functions of the Syariah Court.

The party’s secretary-general Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan (pic) warned that the Beruas MP’s statement was extremely insensitive and had the potential to sow disharmony among the people.

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“For the umpteenth time, PAS has warned that such continued actions have the potential to trigger long-lasting polemics and disharmony along racial and religious lines.

“PAS is also surprised at how, despite being a government-supporting Member of Parliament, Ngeh has shown to be completely insensitive to the process and procedure undertaken by Putrajaya.

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“His reckless statement only seeks to cause controversy and conflict,” he said in a statement on Friday (Dec 29).

He also claimed that Ngeh’s controversial statement was yet another in a series of failures by the government in controlling the narrative of its own party members, especially those outside of government.

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Takiyuddin, who is Kota Bharu MP, said that all parties should be reminded that the country’s Muslim-majority community had never created a confrontational atmosphere or attempted to interfere in the affairs of any other religion.

"The same attitude should be reciprocated and become the holding and practice of all parties," he stressed.

On Thursday (Dec 28), Ngeh had said it was important to appoint non-Muslim constitutional experts to the committee so that non-Muslim views with regard to the provisions in the Federal Constitution could be taken into account before proposals for changes in the law are made.

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Previously in November, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had said the government was looking to form the special committee sanctioned by the Conference of Rulers with the official formation of the committee later announced on Dec 5.

The committee’s purpose was to study ways to enhance the powers of the Syariah Court over Muslims while ensuring that it would not affect non-Muslims while reviewing the competency of state legislatures in formulating Syariah laws.

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