Press Statement By DAP Secretary-General And MP For Bagan Lim Guan Eng In Penang On 8.5.2014.
MCA deputy president Wee Ka Siong had said that if Umno votes in favour of the hudud Bill expected to be tabled by Kelantan, MCA and other component parties in BN, made up of non-Muslims, might review their position in the BN coalition. However, Wee also told Chinese Malaysiakini later that a review of MCA’s position did not mean that MCA would withdraw from BN.
Wee’s verbal acrobatics is confusing as if review is not withdrawal what does Wee exactly means by review? MCA should say what it means and means what it says. Unless MCA makes a clear and definite clarification that review of MCA’s position in BN is withdrawal from BN, this is another meaningless political sandiwara. Why should MCA go back into Cabinet now when Wee is talking about review when UMNO has flip-flopped its position from opposing the implementation of hudud to fully supporting PAS implementing hudud in Kelantan?
Wee is wrong and dishonest when he said that Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Jamil Khir Baharom did not represent BN when Jamil started the entire controversy by instigating PAS in Parliament on March 27 2014 to implement hudud on Muslims in Kelantan. Jamil had said that “the federal government will be ready to work with any state government that is ready to implement hudud including Kelantan, because Umno Kelantan assemblypersons had supported the passing of Kelantan Syariah Criminal Code Enactment II to implement hudud in 1993”.
Jamil even suggested that it is up to the non-government members of Parliament to table a private member’s’ bill for that purpose and that any state government that plans to implement hudud was welcome to do so. How can Wee say that Jamil did not represent BN when Jamil was replying on behalf of the BN government in Parliament? As as former Deputy Minister himself, Wee should know that any replies given in Parliament is made on behalf of the BN government not just on behalf of MCA or UMNO. This is the principle of collective responsibility in government.
Jamil Khir even went a step further by forming a joint central technical committee comprising PAS, Putrajaya and the Kelantan government to look into the implementation of hudud in Kelantan in a joint press conference with Kelantan Deputy Menteri Besar Datuk Mohd Amar Nik Abdullah on 2.5.2014.
Instead of criticising UMNO, MCA President Liow Tiong Lai has chosen to pin the blame of DAP and PAS despite DAP openly criticising PAS for openly working with UMNO to implement hudud, after failing to secure support from DAP and PR. Can Liow explain the perverse logic and double-standards of MCA not daring to criticise UMNO for instigating PAS to implement hudud laws in Kelantan but yet attacking DAP that had openly criticised both PAS and UMNO for wanting to do so?
To cover-up MCA’s lack of courage to criticise UMNO for supporting the implementation of hudud in Kelantan, MCA is relying on their control of the mainstream media to distort and lie as well as question DAP for refusing to work with MCA to oppose PAS implementing hudud. In view of the difficulty of DAP’s explanation getting printed in the mainstream media, DAP urges the public to read the online news media that DAP refuses to co-operate with a MCA that still dare not criticise UMNO for co-operating with PAS to implement hudud in Kelantan.
The mainstream media did not print former MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek’s full agreement with the DAP that only UMNO with the largest number of MPs(88) in Parliament, has the power to determine success or failure in PAS’ attempt to implement hudud in Kelantan. For that reason Chua said that it is only logical that MCA must first convince Umno not to support PAS implementing hudud.
Wee’s fudging on the position of whether MCA will withdraw from BN if UMNO votes for the hudud bill
contrasts with the clear and unequivocal stand of DAP in opposing the hudud bill whether it is implemented by PAS or UMNO, whether in or outside Kelantan, whether on Muslim or non-Muslims because it is unconstitutional. DAP does not agree with PAS that it is okay for a Muslim to be subject to the harsher punishment of amputation of limb for theft under hudud laws whereas a non-Muslim will only be jailed for theft.
There cannot be two separate laws for criminal offences as it is a discrimination on ground only of religion and therefore, unconstitutional. As stressed the former Chief Justice, Tun Abdul Hamid Mohamad, hudud as a Federal criminal law must apply to all, Muslims and non-Muslims alike, because it is “criminal law” and not “offences relating to percepts of Islam” as provided by List II (State List) Ninth Schedule of the Federal Constitution. If it is made applicable to Muslims only, it would be contrary to Article 8 as it is a discrimination on ground only of religion and therefore, unconstitutional, null and void.
LIM GUAN ENG