Hudud can’t be implemented under present political condition, says Karpal


V Anbalagan, TMI

It is almost impossible to implement hudud under the present political, democratic and constitutional framework, civil lawyers said, adding that the entire system would have to be overhauled if the Islamic criminal law was to replace the secular penal code.

The lawyers said any attempt to introduce hudud was a mere political game to demonstrate to Muslims, which party – PAS or Umno – was more Islamic and prepared to uphold Allah’s law.

Their response comes following a statement by Kelantan Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob that the state would table a private member’s bill in Parliament later this year to seek a declaration that the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Court Enactment II, or hudud, be implemented in the state.

The PAS-led government approved the enactment in 1993, three years after capturing Kelantan from Barisan Nasional.

Constitutional lawyer Karpal Singh (pic) said the passing of the enactment was, in the first place, unconstitutional as the state assembly had no jurisdiction to pass such law.

As such, the Bukit Gelugor MP said Parliament could not enforce an unconstitutional enactment passed by a state assembly.

“I do not see how Kelantan can introduce hudud even if the Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara approved the private member’s bill with a simple majority,” he said.

Karpal said hudud was not a law for the present age and time.

“The DAP position on hudud has been made clear time and again and it is fundamental to the party’s existence. The passing of such a law will not be in the national interests.”

DAP is part of Pakatan Rakyat, a loose coalition consisting of Pas and PKR.

Lawyer Syahredzan Johan said hudud could only be implemented if the supreme law of the land, the Federal Constitution, was amended and that needed two-thirds majority support of lawmakers.

“Malaysia must then be an Islamic state to introduce God’s law but then the entire political, democratic and constitutional framework will be substantially altered,” he said.

In a nutshell, Syahredzan said the present make-up of the executive, legislature and the judiciary would not exist under an Islamic state.

“However, I am wondering how hudud could exist in Kelantan under the current secular framework.”