Govt axes parliamentary debate for Hadi’s Bill today

Source: The Malay Mail Online

KUALA LUMPUR, April 5 — PAS’ proposed amendments to the Shariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act, also known as Act 355, will not be debated in the Dewan Rakyat today despite being listed high up on the order paper in the last sitting for the 13th Parliament.

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Azalina Othman tabled a motion that the House will adjourn immediately after debating a Ministry of Finance motion, not giving way for the private member’s Bill brought by Marang MP and PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang.

Hadi’s Bill was brought up in Parliament and read out twice before since it first appeared in the order paper three years ago.

It is unclear if the Bill will automatically return to the Order Papers after the general election, as Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia declined to rule on the matter. Read more

Court to hear Pandikar’s application to strike out originating summons in RUU355 case

Source: The Malaysian Insight

DEWAN Rakyat Speaker Pandikar Amin Mulia and Dewan Rakyat Secretary Roosme Hamzah have applied to strike out the originating summons filed against them by former Sungai Benut MP Mohamed Tawfik Ismail in a case pertaining to the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) (Amendment) 2016 bill.

Pandikar and Roosme as defendants filed the application two months ago on grounds that the originating summons was frivolous, vexatious and an abuse of the court process.

The defendants’ application was based on Articles 62(1) and 63(1) of the Federal Constitution, senior federal counsel Shamsul Bolhassan told reporters after the case mention in the chambers of Justice Kamaludin Md Said.

Article 62(1) states that “each House of Parliament shall regulate its own procedure” while Article 63(1) states that “the validity of any proceedings in either House of Parliament or any committee thereof shall not be questioned in any court”. Read more

Hadi contradicting himself on Constitution with Shariah Bill, interfaith group says

Source: The Malay Mail Online 

KUALA LUMPUR, July 31 — The Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Sikhism and Taoism (MCCBCHST) chided PAS president Datuk Seri Hadi Awang for trying to mislead Malaysians to support his controversial Shariah Bill by claiming it is in line with the Federal Constitution.

The umbrella group representing the country’s five main non-Islamic creeds argued that the Federal Constitution clearly spells out the extent of criminal offences as covered under Shariah law in the State List II (Schedule 9).

“Crimes such as theft, robbery, sodomy, etc. are already covered by the Penal Code and thus are out of the jurisdiction of a state. By now wanting to introduce hudud offences it actually has the effect of creating a parallel Syariah Criminal System which will be in conflict with the Federal Constitution and thus is unconstitutional,” the group said in a statement today.

The MCCBCHST claimed that Hadi was carrying out what he had advised others against, ie destroying the constitution, by seeking to introduce hudud penalties to a secular government. Read more

Former DPM’s son warns Malay Rulers of crisis arising from Shariah Bill

Source: The Malay Online 

KUALA LUMPUR, July 26 — The son of the late Tun Dr Ismail Abdul Rahman has written to the Conference of Malay Rulers to highlight the Speaker of Parliament’s alleged disregard of their authority over religious matters.

In a letter to Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia to convey the contents of his earlier writings to the royals, Mohamed Tawfik Ismail reiterated his insistence that PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s so-called Shariah Bill must be approved by the Malay Rulers before it may be tabled in Parliament.

Tawfik told Pandikar that he notified the Conference that the Speaker refused to acknowledge this, which was among reasons he was suing to block the progress of the private member’s Bill to amend the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 or Act 355. Read more

Recap of Shariah Bill saga before Dewan Rakyat sitting tomorrow

Source: The Malay Mail Online 

KUALA LUMPUR, July 23 — PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s bid for harsher Shariah punishments is expected to make another appearance in this parliamentary meeting that will start tomorrow until August 10.

In case you might have forgotten the events from three months ago, here’s where we left off in April in Hadi’s long-running attempt to empower Shariah courts to dole out more severe punishments to Muslim offenders.

Hadi had proposed amending the Shariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965, or Act 355, to increase the Shariah courts’ maximum sentencing limits to 30 years’ jail, RM100,000 fine and 100 strokes of the cane.

Just a day before the second anniversary of his proposed legal changes’ appearance in Parliament, the Marang MP managed to table on April 6 his parliamentary motion which contained his proposed private member’s Bill. Read more

Malaysian state approves public caning for Syariah offences

Source: Asian Correspondent

Kelantan has approved public caning which could see the implementation of the corporal punishment, similar to what is being carried out in this picture taken in Aceh, Indonesia. Source: Reuters

MALAYSIA’S northeastern state of Kelantan has made amendments to its religious Islamic laws to allow public caning against “criminals” who breach its strict Syariah code.

The New Straits Times quoted Kelantan Chief Minister Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah as saying the state legislative assembly had amended the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Procedure Enactment 2002 to include public caning as an option for the state’s Islamic courts.

“However, with the amendment, the sentencing can be carried out in public or prison depending on the court’s decision. This is in accordance with Islam, as in the sentencing must be done in public,” he said after closing a state assembly session on Wednesday. Read more

‘Defend M’sia as secular nation’

Source: The Star Online

Former Court of Appeal Judge, Datuk Seri Mohd Hishamudin Yunus. Pic from the Star Online.

KUALA LUMPUR: All Malaysians must defend Malaysia as a secular country as inspired by the nation’s founding father Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Alhaj, said a former Court of Appeal judge.

Datuk Seri Mohd Hishamudin Yunus (pic) said the proposed amendments to the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 (RUU355) was not suitable and would not be accepted by most Malaysians.

The argument that the RUU355 will not affect non-Muslims also cannot be accepted, he said.

Hishamudin said there were common cases such as orang asli wrongly registered as Muslims, non-Muslim children being converted to Islam by one parent and corpses seized by Islamic authorities claiming that the deceased was a Muslim despite having no concrete proof. Read more

Human rights for all — Suhakam

Source: The Malay Mail Online

MAY 16 — The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) has been following the developments on the amendments to the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 (RUU 355) with deep concern.

As an independent statutory body empowered to safeguard human rights and obliged to enlighten the public as primary stakeholders in the promotion and protection of human rights, Suhakam has the following observations to make:

(a) Caning and/or lashing in any setting violates the absolute prohibition of torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading punishment under international law. Suhakam also emphasises that all forms of torture and other cruel inhuman or degrading treatment are absolutely prohibited by customary international law and international treaties that Malaysia has acceded to, including the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (Cedaw), Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) and the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD). Read more

‘Sabah, Sarawak MPs must defeat Hadi’s bill’

Source: FMT News

Shariah law amendment will introduce hudud, thus altering secular nature of Malaysian legal system, says East Malaysian group of ex-politicians, business leaders. Pic from FMT News.

PETALING JAYA: Sabah and Sarawak MPs must defeat a motion to debate a Private Members Bill to enhance punishments for shariah offences as it is against the right to freedom of religion that the two territories had agreed to in forming Malaysia.

Former Human Rights Commission vice-chairman Simon Sipaun said politicians should be aware of this as that guaranteee was outlined in separate agreements from both states.

“We are appealing to those in power and authority but they should know better. The motion is all about politics and religion,” said Sipaun.

Sipaun said this in response to a document unveiled yesterday in four languages, including Iban and Kadazan, to create awareness among the people in both states on the far reaching implications of the motion. Read more

PAS to apply new Shariah punishments in states it takes in GE14

Source: The Malay Mail Online

ALOR SETAR, April 27 — PAS will introduce higher Shariah sentencing limits in the five states the party aims to control after the next general election, PAS Youth chief Nik Mohamad Abduh Nik Abdul Aziz said today.

Nik Abduh said this was also contingent, however, on PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s private member’s Bill being passed by Parliament.

He then urged the Islamist party’s youth wing to help realise Hadi’s ambition for PAS to rule five states and win 40 parliamentary seats in the next election.

“If it is fated that Act 355 is passed in Parliament, and PAS manages to rule five states in GE14, we actually have the powers to amend Shariah enactments at the state levels,” Nik Abduh said during his opening speech at the PAS Youth Muktamar here today. Read more