Sarawak Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem will renege on his pledge to block PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s private Bill to upgrade the Shariah courts, state DAP chairman Chong Chieng Jen predicted today.
Chong said Adenan appeared to have softened his position on the Bill following a meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, and now adopted a “wait-and-see” attitude as opposed to his previous directive for Sarawak BN MPs to vote it down.
The state DAP chief pointed out that Adenan has already made two “U-turns” on his pledges to uphold Sarawak’s rights: regarding more oil royalties for the state and the push to restore Sarawak’s status as the equal of the combined peninsular states.
“It has not happened yet, but surely he will make a third U-turn and give support to the Bill, despite his stand that he would not allow hudud law in Sarawak and even directing all the 25 state Barisan Nasional parliamentarians to vote against Hadi’s Bill,” Chong said.
The Kuching MP then challenged Adenan to show that he was true to his word and reiterate his stand to block Hadi’s Bill.
Following the meeting with the DPM on Thursday, Adenan said he was prepared to study the clauses and implications of Hadi’s Bill after a parliamentary select committee makes its recommendations.
The next day, SPDP president and Bintulu MP Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing had to fend off accusations of betraying non-Muslims in the state over the refusal to condemn Hadi’s Bill.
Hadi on Thursday tabled a motion on his private member’s Bill that now seeks to amend the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965, to increase the Islamic courts’ punishment ceiling to 30 years’ prison, RM100,000 fine and 100 lashes of the cane.
Hadi’s Bill in its original form had been characterised as necessary to pave way for the enforcement of Kelantan’s Syariah Criminal Code (II) Enactment 1993 or also known as hudud.
This has receded with each advance the Bill has made, however, and is currently presented as takzir, which refers to judges’ discretion to decide punishments that are not covered under hudud.
Source : The Malay Mail Online