Impossible to trust PAS again, says Ambiga

by Looi Sue-Chern
The Malaysian Insider
18 March 2015

Civil society leader and former Bar Council president Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan said PAS has betrayed the trust of the people who had voted for them on Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) platform, after the Islamist party went ahead to table a bill in the Kelantan state legislative assembly to reintroduce hudud in the state.

She said she was shocked and disappointed at PAS for what bringing back the Islamic penal code – a move which she said was in breach of PR’s common policy and a betrayal of voters who had supported PAS based on a shared platform with allies DAP and PKR.

“After this, it will be near impossible for them to regain that trust,” she told The Malaysian Insider today.

Ambiga said the PAS-led Kelantan administration should seriously look at its priorities, considering that the state was only recently hit by its worst floods in decades.

“The state and its wonderful people have not even begun to recover from the devastating floods and yet that does not seem to be at the top of the agenda for the state government,” she said.

Ambiga, a former president of the Bar Council and former co-chair of electoral reform watchdog Bersih 2.0, said the hudud legislation had also offended the Federal Constitution.

She said Kelantan’s lawmakers should not have tabled such a bill at the state legislative assembly.

“They have sought to assure non-Muslims that hudud will not be imposed on them but given the manner in which they have breached the common agreement and the revelations in the Jakim paper revealed in the media… it is difficult to be comfortable with that assurance.”

It was reported last year that a working paper by Jakim, the Malaysian Islamic Development Department, had said that non-Muslims can be subjected to Shariah laws and that all laws should be harmonised with Islamic principles.

“Regardless of this, the main issue in my view is the constitutionality of this bill,” Ambiga said today.

Ambiga said she was also shocked that the amendments include the death penalty for apostasy, and that it was unacceptable for terms like “heathens” to be used.

When tabling the bill, Kelantan Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob said the Islamic penal code should not be opposed, adding that those who called it cruel and inhuman were making wild allegations.

He also said critics were those who “had no faith” (orang tidak beriman) and hudud was the answer to crime as it was determined by God.

“Man has no right to reject or change Shariah laws that have been set in Islam. Muslim rulers are duty-bound to implement them as they can resolve any type of crime that is happening in the country.

“Implementing Shariah criminal laws is also not about preserving political power, as alleged by some quarters,” Ahmad reportedly said. – March 18, 2015.

  1. #1 by Noble House on Thursday, 19 March 2015 - 3:19 am

    What now, MCA and Gerakan? When the bill goes to Parliament, what will you do? Support Umno Baru as usual? And when the UG comes about, you will have not only one, but two “Big Brothers” to contend with and kowtow to. What then? If there is any pride or dignity still left in you, isn’t it about time you take your parties out of the BN to prove that you are totally against “Hudud” and not merely playing mind games with those you claimed to represent? Or, forever remain silent as obedient dogs to your political masters? The same goes with Sabah and Sarawak.

  2. #2 by Bigjoe on Thursday, 19 March 2015 - 7:40 am

    Its NOT even the issue. In the next GE, UMNO Kelantan is going to go around saying they also supported Hudud and the only difference between them and PAS is that they bring development while PAS don’t. After PAS loses Kelantan, those who supported this will cave and say its time to merge with UMNO. The resulting entity is one that is corrupt, abusive, racist AND has religion as an additional weapon.

    THAT is the disaster we are talking about. We face a pivotal moment in history and truth is except for DAP, most Malaysian leaders are failing..

  3. #3 by Bigjoe on Thursday, 19 March 2015 - 1:27 pm

    PKR voted for the Hudud bill. Divorce is NEVER EASY.

    We live in historic moment, unfortunately…

  4. #4 by boh-liao on Thursday, 19 March 2015 - 2:44 pm

    “In Politics there are no permanent friends or foes,only permanent interests.”
    Rakyat will continue 2 watch WAYANG – akan datang, WAR or Make Love again

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