‘Mum and I unfairly portrayed as threats to Islam’

PETALING JAYA: Tengku Yasmin Nastasha Tengku Abdul Rahman, who challenged the constitutionality of certain provisions in Kelantan’s syariah law, says she and her mother have been unfairly portrayed as “threats to the sanctity of Islam”.

The 29-year-old shared on X that the past four days had taken a toll on her despite the Federal Court’s verdict in favour of her challenge.

“For the last 4 days, I have not had enough sleep and can barely eat. Even after the 8-1 result in favour of our petition, I do not feel the best,” she wrote on Sunday. She was, however, hopeful of a positive outcome from the ruling, which saw the apex court declaring that 16 provisions in the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Enactment Code as unconstitutional.

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“It is imperative to clarify that our pursuit was driven by a singular motive: adherence to due process in the enactment and application of laws.

“The vitriolic campaign waged against us by (these) adversaries manifested in baseless allegations, portraying us as threats to the sanctity of Islam.”

Tengku Yasmin Nastasha said her petition was merely a judicial review to ascertain whether the Kelantan state assembly had exceeded its constitutional mandate.

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The apex court ruled that the state legislature did act beyond its powers when it passed the 16 provisions as the offences they covered are already in federal laws.

“Regrettably, our detractors resorted to ad hominem (personal) attacks, targeting my mother (Kelantan-born lawyer Nik Elin Zurina Nik Abdul Rashid) and attempting to link our case with the authority of the Malay Rulers.

“Such assertions are not only fallacious but also reflect a cynical ploy to deflect accountability onto our most revered institution.

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“Let me reiterate unequivocally my unwavering allegiance and reverence for our Malay Rulers. I have nothing but love and admiration for our Malay Rulers, especially His Royal Highness the Sultan of my home state,” she added.

“To the people of Malaysia, I hope you can somewhat appreciate our small victory. I hear through the grapevine that the plan now is to harmonise the syariah laws in this country, said Tengku Yasmin Natasha.

“Hopefully, many positives can come from our petition,” she said.

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In her landmark judgment on Feb 9, Chief Justice Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat, who led a nine-member panel of judges, emphasised that the case had nothing to do with the position of Islam or the syariah court.

Tengku Maimun said that if the provisions enacted by the state legislature were items that were already on the Federal List, the state had no power to enact the said law.

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