A recent Report published by G25, a group of former top civil servants, “Administration of Matters Pertaining to Islam” points out that “there is no constitutional or legal basis for the establishment of JAKIM [The Malaysian Islamic Development Department].” The Report acknowledges the need to have a federal agency to promote uniformity in the administration of Islamic law among the states. However, the Constitution would have to be amended to legitimize the existence of JAKIM. It is noted that even if JAKIM were to be legally established, its role should be confined to advising the states, which would not be obliged to heed its advice. Continue reading “JAKIM Was Established Without Constitutional or Legal Basis”
** Note to the reader. There will be some amendments to Hadi’s bill as it goes through the various readings in Parliament. Supporters of Hadi’s bill will then claim that the statement of MCCBCHST’s is no longer relevant. We disagree!
In any case, the statement is shared as documentation about the baseline or ultimate goal of the Islamic Hudud agenda which will be “implemented in phases”. The statement also reminds us the hudud context even as the next stage will be on explaining why the bill with the new amendments is still unacceptable.
** Call your MPs to make sure they vote against Hadi’s Bill (UMNO Assisted).
The Malaysian Counsultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taosim (MCCBCHST) is gravely concerned with Hadi’s Private Members Bill which will be coming up for debate soon in our Federal Parliament. As the Bill will have far –reaching consequences for the Nation, the MCCBCHST feels duty bound to issue this open letter to Members of Parliament to do their duty as required by their oath of office to protect our Federal Constitution.
Excerpts from the 8-page MCCBCHST Open Letter to MPs I. Is HADI’s Private Member’s Bill a Bill empowering HUDUD offences? The answer is a clear ‘YES”. Here it is why…
The AIM of HADI’s Private Member’s Bill is to seek Parliament’s approval to enhance the Jurisdiction of the SYARIAH COURTS…
[The policy introduced by the Mahathir administration in the early 1980s, innocuously promoting Islamic universal values, became a platform for certain quarters to embark on a drive to change the fundamental character of the Malaysia polity and its legal order.
Will Malaysia end up as an Islamic or quasi-Islamic state by the gradual and subtle re-writing of her foundational document, the Federal Constitution? Or will she retain her character as an essentially secular nation?
These developments in Islamisation threaten to subvert the very foundation on which we, the citizens, and the territorial components of Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak have held together as one nation.]
This article demonstrates how the current view that only the Syariah Court has the jurisdiction to rule on the status on those who had renounced Islam began with a misreading of a minority view in an earlier Supreme Court’s judgment in Dalip Kaur and treating it as setting a binding precedent. The non-binding minority view subsequently turned into ratio decidendi when the Federal Court in Soon Singh case approved the High Court’s judgment which ‘followed’ the minority view instead of the ratio of the majority judgment in Dalip Kaur.
Confusion between ratio decidendi (“the reason for the decision” which has legal binding effect) and orbiter dictum (“an incidental, by the way statement” which has only persuasive value) also arose in cases relating to religious freedom in Malaysia.
PAS politicians and some UMNO government officials repeatedly assure non-Muslims that that Syariah law will not be applied to them even as Abdul Hadi Awang tables the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) (Amendment) Bill 2016 to widen the scope of the criminal jurisdiction of Syariah Courts. However, non-Muslims have reasons to doubt whether the assurance is empty, if not disingenuous, when the authorities in Kelantan and officials in various government departments repeatedly impose public policies that infringe on the fundamental liberties of non-Muslims. It is the duty of every conscientious Member of Parliament to reject any proposed legislation that violates the provisions in the Federal Constitution that protect the rights of non-Muslims and Muslims against punitive criminal actions based on religious precepts.
Beware when the wolf ‘courteously’ invites the lamb for supper in his den when it is seen sharpening its claws and teeth.