Hornbill Unleashed

March 29, 2017

Act 355 not acceptable even if East Malaysians exempted — Baru Bian

Filed under: Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 8:03 AM

The suggestion that the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 (Act 355) will only be applicable to Muslims in Peninsular Malaysia and that East Malaysians are exempted does not make the Act acceptable, says state PKR chairman Baru Bian.

Baru, who is Ba Kelalan assemblyman, was referring to the commentary by a Chinese national daily that was reproduced in an online news portal yesterday as ‘Pivotal role for Sabah, Sarawak MPs over Hadi’s bill’.

“It has been suggested that the government’s version of Act 355 will only be applicable to Muslims in Peninsular Malaysia, in an effort to win over the MPs from Sabah and Sarawak, who have strongly objected to the bill.

“If this is the intention of the government, it shows the absurdity of the whole situation and makes it absolutely clear now that their taking over of the bill from PAS and trying to push it through is politically motivated.

“Even if the government proposes to exempt Sabah and Sarawak from the Bill, do not expect us to breathe a sigh of relief and allow the bill to pass without a fight,” Baru said in a press statement yesterday.

Baru said this short-sighted ‘solution’ would prove that the BN/Umno government places no importance on inclusiveness and equality, and is unconcerned that this move will divide the country into two, each with its own legal system.

“This will be in violation of Article 8 of the Federal Constitution, which must come into play now, more than ever before.

“Article 8(1) states: All persons are equal before the law and entitled to the equal protection of the law. Article 8(2) provides: Except as expressly authorized by this Constitution, there shall be no discrimination against citizens on the ground only of religion, race, descent, place of birth, gender in any law…’”

In view of this, Baru asked how is it possible that the government could even consider a Bill that offends Article 8 in almost every respect.

“MPs from Sabah and Sarawak must not be lured into believing that this is a good way out for them from being responsible and accountable for their actions. There is no escaping their sworn duty to preserve, protect and defend the Constitution from being violated by the BN/Umno government.”

He said this Bill in its amended form will be unfair and unjust to our fellow citizens in Peninsular Malaysia, and our MPs must take cognizance of the fact that their duty to the citizens is not confined to those in their own constituencies, but extends to all Malaysians.

Furthermore, Baru said many Sarawakians and Sabahans reside and work in Peninsular Malaysia, adding: “It is not practical or realistic that they will be exempted from this oppressive law. Our MPs must also bear this in mind.”

Baru said if East Malaysia does not assert every citizen’s rights to equality under Article 8 now, and goes along with the blinkered and misguided views that it can somehow be shielded from Act 355, once the law is passed, the proponents may pounce on Article 8 and insist that the law which it thought it was exempted from, should apply equally to it.

Therefore, he said MPs from Sabah and Sarawak must stand firm and not play into the hands of those that would use East Malaysians as pawns in their political games.

“This is a crucial test for our MPs – we have the opportunity to make a difference and to have a say in how we want Malaysia to be. The direction the country is heading is certainly not what our forefathers signed up for. Let us show the BN/Umno government what we are made of.”

Source : @ Borneo Post Online


1 Comment »

  1. Sarawak BN lawmakers have been sleeping in the same house as Umno Baru pirates and thieves and depended on Umno Baru ‘s patronage. Do not trust Sarawak CM or any BN lawmakers at all.

    Comment by Mat Som — March 29, 2017 @ 5:43 PM | Reply

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