Kartika adamant about not appealing despite PM’s advice

(Bernama) – Kartika Sari Dewi Shukarno remained firm with her decision to accept punishment meted out to her by the Pahang Syariah High Court although Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had urged her to appeal against the decision.

The 32-year-old part-time model had been fined RM5,000 and ordered to be given six strokes of rotan on July 20, by the Syariah High Court after she pleaded guilty to drinking beer at a hotel lounge in Cherating last year.

“Kartika should appeal instead of being too quick in seeking punishment. There is still an avenue for her to appeal,” Najib had told reporters after chairing the National Financial Council meeting at the Finance Ministry in Putrajaya today.

Kartika, a mother of two, however, said she would await whatever decision made by the Pahang Religious Department (JAIP) after the department had deferred her punishment due to the fasting month.

“I will wait for their action but JAIP has not contacted me yet. I feel ashamed of myself for showing disrespect to my own religion. I want to respect JAIP's decision and go through the punishment.

“I had sought advice from the Mufti of Perak, Tan Sri Harussani Zakaria and he told me and my family that he will confer with his counterpart in Pahang to see what can be done. He (Mufti) later called the Syariah High Court judge in Pahang to discuss the matter.

“I told everything to the Mufti and cried. He asked me why I did not want to appeal before sentence was passed … but he understood me and I have told him everything,” she told reporters when met at her house here today.

She added that she respected the views of the Prime Minister and was grateful to him for being concerned but added that she would not change her mind on her previous decision to accept the punishment.

“I respect the law and Islam. Even before the sentence was passed in court, I had already made up my mind to accept the punishment and go through the ordeal,” she said.