Hadi to make more amendments to shariah bill


KUALA LUMPUR: PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang is expected to further tweak his proposed amendments to the Shariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 in Parliament tomorrow.

Kuala Nerus MP Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali, who revealed this to reporters at the Parliament lobby today, was confident the bill would be tabled, debated and put to the vote the same day.

The PAS Syura Council member said the expected amendments included increasing the penalties and setting a maximum punishment that the shariah courts were able to impose.

“The adjustments involve the increase in shariah penalties, but as requested by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Jamil Khir Baharom yesterday, there will be a maximum punishment,” he said, referring to the special briefing session on Act 355 chaired by the deputy prime minister yesterday.

Khairuddin said the amendments would only cover offences such as pre-marital sex, intoxication and falsely accusing a person of illicit sex (zina).

He added the amendments would empower the shariah courts to impose jail terms of up to 30 years, fines of up to RM100,000 and up to 100 strokes of the cane.

Shariah court punishment is currently limited to jail terms not exceeding three years, whipping of not more than six strokes, or fines of not more than RM5,000.

“A hundred lashes under shariah law is equivalent to one lash under civil law. One shariah lash is more of a tap, like how you tap your children.”

Meanwhile, Hadi fended off reporters who approached him with questions on the bill. He replied “tomorrow, tomorrow” when he was quizzed on whether the bill could be read out today.

Hadi’s Private Member’s bill seeks to increase the powers of the shariah courts to impose a heavier penalty for offences under the shariah law for Islamic offences listed under state jurisdiction in the Federal Constitution.

The amended version of the bill is expected to be read in Parliament before the end of the current parliamentary session.