So you like to beat down hudud


I want to tell what those committed to oppose hudud legislation in Malaysia, how to go about it. 

Praba Ganesan, Malay Mail Online

Let’s get down to it. Single issue advocacy is not new, but it is potent. A little organisation goes a long way in achieving legislative and policy goals using democratic means.

In the aftermath of GE13, almost a quarter of a million Malaysians wrote in to the White House to complain about the electoral process in our country. President Barack Obama’s project “We the people” responded that all democratic developments involving Malaysia were being keenly observed.

I’m not sure whether a bland statement in response to that many people petitioning in a week is commensurate, but it was definitely underwhelming.

However despite the outcome, it does along with other precedents prove that more Malaysians are willing to act on their political rights, whether right or wrong using the democratic means available to them. And in the Internet lies the greatest social equaliser since the printing press.

And it is time to do something about the hudud proposal PAS wants to play out. The ideas of state autonomy, limited legislation, central beliefs actualised by a system and reversibility have been bandied about.

This column is not going to justify or rebut hudud. There is no intention to disrespect or claim expert knowledge of what it may be, can be, has been and will be in the Malaysian context if legislative permission is won.

Here, I want to tell what those committed to oppose hudud legislation in Malaysia, how to go about it.

Mindful please, that those opposed to hudud in Malaysia are not limited to Non-Muslims.

The how

A national paper suggested that if all Umno MPs cross the aisle and support the PAS proposal, then all that’s needed is another four lawmakers in Parliament to join them and pass the motion. While this may appear staggeringly real on the face of it, for all that is necessary is a quartet of Muslim MPs from either PKR or Sarawak’s Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) to complete a majority, it is a longs way off.

It is overly simplistic to put it down to arithmetic and conclude that Muslims are Muslims and therefore are compelled to support all things deemed Muslim. To assume that if Umno acquiesces then there is no stopping the proposal.

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