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Can hudud be applied to non-Muslims?

 | September 28, 2011

A Kita MP is arguing that hudud can be applied to non-Muslims as it is a set of laws to serve the public in general.

SUNGAI PETANI: The debate on hudud took a new twist with a Kita MP saying it can be applied to non-Muslims.

Nibong Tebal MP Tan Tee Beng said Kita president Zaid Ibrahim told him recently that non-Muslims can be subjected to the same punishment under the hudud criminal code enactments.

Tan said that currently the Syariah (Islamic) laws being practised in Malaysia are on civil and family legislation, which mostly governs individual Muslim family matters.

It manages family laws such as marriages, divorce settlements, custody of children, family will, properties disbursement, family disputes – all mainly personal or private legal issues.

However, hudud is defined as a set of public punishments to mete out justice to the various types of crimes committed.

This falls under the realm of public domain, meaning that everybody, regardless if they are Muslims or non-Muslims, can be subjected to hudud if they are found guilty of committing a crime.

The Federal Constitution must be amended to accommodate facets of hudud criminal code in it, Tan said.

‘I was shocked’

For now, he added that the matter is polemic as hudud can only be adopted if the Federal Constitution is amended.

It can be passed by certain states, which see a need for it but it cannot be applied unless the Federal Constitution is amended, Tan said.

“I was shocked when I was informed that hudud can be applied to non-Muslims. I think Pakatan Rakyat is not telling the whole truth. It has resorted to half-truths.”

He said he now understands why DAP chairman Karpal Singh and secretary-general Lim Guan Eng are strongly opposing the law.

Tan urged Pakatan to focus on pressing issues affecting the country such as the economy, owing to the unfavourable global economic conditions sparked by the huge budget deficits of the US and Europe.

He also called on Barisan Nasional and Pakatan to find ways to reduce the nation’s dependence on food imports, so the costs of living can be mitigated, especially in urban areas.

He hopes Karpal and Lim would apply the principles of Competency, Accountability and Transparency (CAT) when handling the hudud issue.


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