Hadi’s Bill will just have to wait


(The Star) – THE Private Member’s Bill tabled by PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang will have to wait before seeing the light of day. And it is not clear how long it will have to wait.

Although it was listed as the fourth item on the agenda yesterday, the motion to amend the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdic­tion) Act 1965 did not come up for debate.

The day ended with the second item, the reading of the Advocates Ordinance (Sabah) (Amendments) Bill, before Parliament adjourned for the day.

There will be other government matters to be discussed over the next few days before the tabling of the Budget on Friday. After that, all debates would be on the Budget.

Hadi was seen arriving in Parliament for the start of the meeting yesterday but he left at noon without speaking to newsmen.

When met at Parliament lobby, PAS vice-president Idris Ahmad said the party would not give up until the Bill has been passed.

Asked if Barisan Nasional MPs were in support of the Bill, he said reporters should ask Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.

“Ask the Prime Minister lah. We just did our duty of putting forth the issue. What comes next is not up to us,” he said.

Asked how long the party would keep tabling the Bill, Idris said “until doomsday”.

Meanwhile, a dejected-looking PAS secretary-general Datuk Taki­yu­­ddin Hassan admitted it may not be tabled.

“However, we still have 25 days for this Parliament meeting so we are hopeful,” said Takiyuddin at the Parliament lobby.

On May 26, Hadi’s Bill was tabled on the last day of Parliament meets but he opted to postpone the debate to the present meeting.

In a separate development, Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) lawmakers announced that they would be tabling an alternative motion to amend the syariah law.

Amanah communications director Khalid Samad said the motion would be similar “in principle” to that of Hadi’s private member’s Bill.

“Ours will be more acceptable as it will be more in line with the Constitution,” he said.

The motion was submitted by Kota Raja MP Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud to the Speaker last week.

In response to this, MCA Religious Harmony Bureau chairman Datuk Seri Ti Lian Ker lambasted DAP for being in cahoots with its ally to hoodwink non-Muslims again.