According to Malaysiakini Hadi, Guan Eng grilled over hudud, Lim Guan Eng firmly asserted:
"If any problems occur, we will resolve it through musyawarah, that is through discussions. All three parties must hold discussions and if a consensus is not reached, it must be discussed again.”
"This means, should PKR and PAS agree to implement hudud and DAP disagrees then it cannot be implemented. Everything must be discussed until all three parties agree.”
But Malaysiakini Andrew Ong pointed out, that as Lim GE prattled on this line for about five minutes, Pak Haji Hadi Awang was noticeably uncomfortable [squirming or rolling eyes or sneering?]
Andrew said the obvious body language forced Terengganu PAS chief Mustafa Ali to leap in to salvage the situation. Mustafa stated that hudud was not an issue in the Kuala Terengganu by-election as the results would not have any impact on the state or federal government.
As I have blogged in Anwar Ibrahim misleading on PAS hudud intention DAP chairperson Karpal Singh was less than impressed by Anwar Ibrahim’s assurance to the (non-Muslim) voters in Kuala Terengganu that there was no need to reject the hudud proposal as it was only applicable to Muslims. He had also glibly dismissed Karpal’s remark that the PAS proposed legislation was unconstitutional.
But as we had read in Malaysiakini news article Karpal: Anwar's statement on hudud misleading Karpal shot down Anwar’s statement as a fallacy!
The BN has seen this as an opening to drive a wedge between the Pakatan Rakyat coalition as well as to persuade non-Muslim voters not to vote for the PAS candidate (through the MCA of course with UMNO tap dancing niftily away from the hudud question).
Well, it’s obvious that the BN’s attempt to divide and conquer hasn’t found traction as Lim GE is still there campaigning for PAS, and had even loaned a giant two-metre tall lorry-mounted television to PAS for the campaign period.
But the stress of the divergent ideology re the hudud was apparent on the two Pakatan Rakyat members.
What is the hudud?
According to Wikipedia, hudud deals with offences defined as ‘claims of God’, as opposed to other offences which are ‘claims of His servants’. This means the ruler has a responsibility to punish hudud offences and cannot, like the offences classified as ‘claims of His servants’, be left to the parties involved to settle among themselves (by way of compensations) or for them to have a say in the punishment.
In other words, state punishment according to prescribed punishments is mandatory.The term hudud means ’limit’, implying the defined bounds of acceptable Islamic behaviour and the respective punishments for serious crimes.
Hudud offenses include drinking alcohol, theft, highway robbery, ‘zina’ or illegal sexual intercourse, false accusation of illegal sexual intercourse, rebellion against the ruler, and apostasy (which includes blasphemy).
Apparently not all jurists consider apostasy to be a hudud offense, but I wonder what position PAS and UMNO and indeed PKR holds regarding this ‘offence’?
Anyway, Wikipedia tells us that the classes of punishments under the hudud are:
(i) Capital punishments - by sword/crucifixion (for highway robbery with homicide), by stoning (for ‘zina' when the offenders are mature, married Muslims)
(ii) Amputation of hands or feet (for theft and highway robbery without homicide)
(iii) Flogging with a varying number of strokes (for drinking, ‘zina' when the offenders are unmarried or not Muslims, and false accusations of zina')
I must confess the cruel streak in me is attracted to sub-paragraph (ii), when I think of the highway toll. Could we classify a la hudud that those fat cats having the concessions to the toll highways are highway robbers without homicides, unless the conditions of the highways had led to fatal accidents which would then bum their culpability upstairs to sub-paragraph (i) punishment ... gulp!
But on the balance of it all, I tremble at the capital punishment of stoning to death for illicit sexual intercourse - I believe that our first prime minister had once retorted that if we were to implement this particular law, we would soon run out of stones to build our roads.
How can PAS them question DAP for resisting the hudud by arguing that since the latter had accepted civil laws, what's then was the big deal about hudud?
Just consider the example of zina, where a vast difference in punishment exists between the two systems on 'bonking on the sly'. Under hudud, one will be executed through stoning whilst under civil laws, it’s not a crime to 'curi makan' (though in some circumstances, provisions exist for the injured party to sue the othe party).
Indeed, spiritual leader of the DAP, Karpal Singh asked succinctly (assuming a case of zina between a Muslim and a non-Muslim): "What would happen if there are two co-accused, a Muslim and a non-Muslim with the Muslim opting for hudud law and the non-Muslim for civil law? How would the courts get out of this dilemma?”
Under those circumstances I doubt very much the Muslim would opt to be tried under hudud.
Karpal said, as reported by the The Malaysian Insider that DAP was prepared to cooperate with PAS and Pakatan Rakyat on condition that both PAS and Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) do not insist on the introduction of hudud laws.
He fatwa-ed: “It has been said in politics there are no permanent enemies or friends, but the need to have permanent principles must remain sacrosanct for any political party worth its name to be acceptable to the rakyat.”
As we can see, the ‘spiritual’ leader of a secular political party upholds principles rather than the teachings of a holy book
Karpal also called upon PAS and PKR (wakakaka - aiyoh Anwar Ibrahim, mana lu punya Kulim Wonder lah?) to cease from further clamouring for the impossible and accept that hudud laws had no place in the statute books.
Karpal warns that the point which should not be missed, but which regrettably had been missed by both Anwar and Hadi, was that the Federal Constitution provided for one uniform law, namely, civil law for both Muslims and non-Muslims across the board.
He said: “The call by both PAS and PKR to have hudud laws applicable to Muslims with an option given to non-Muslims to choose between hudud law and civil law would, and must, mean the introduction of an Islamic state which would mean destruction of the basic structure of the Constitution.”
Karpal said though the Federal Constitution could only be amended through a two-third majority in Parliament, the amendment cannot include destruction of the basic structure of the Constitution, as this would go beyond amendment.
I say Amin to that.