Respect what Kelantanese want, says PKR MP

PETALING JAYA: The will of the Kelantanese people to have provisions for criminal offences under the Kelantan Syariah Enactment must be respected, says a PKR member.

Pasir Gudang MP Hassan Abdul Karim said Kelantan’s unique political, cultural and historical background must be taken into consideration when assessing the validity of the state’s syariah provisions.

“When the Kelantan Mentri Besar, its assemblymen, and the legal advisors of Kelantan know the risks and possibilities of the Syariah Criminal Code Enactment being challenged in court and annulled, why do they insist on continuing the enactment?

“I believe they (Kelantan assemblymen) were fully aware because the state government is not naive and would not blindly table the enactment in their state assembly,” he said when commenting on the Federal Court’s decision to strike out 16 provisions under the Kelantan Syariah Enactment which are already covered by federal law.

“Over 90% of the population of Kelantan are Malay Muslims. For more than 33 years, they have chosen PAS, an Islamist party with an agenda to strengthen Islamic syariah law in the state, through democratic elections, not through coercion or force.

“We can agree and respect the Federal Constitution and the decision of the Federal Court,” he said.

“However, we must be fair to not only the PAS government in Kelantan but the majority of the Kelantan people who want the Islamic declaration to be upheld in their state,” he said, while pointing out that he was a member of PKR, whose ideology is multiracial and multireligious.

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