THE newly enforced Kelantan’s Syariah Criminal Code (I) Enactment 2019 contained several questionable amendments which have potential to trigger a domino effect if emulated by the Islamic authorities of other states.

In fact, the new provisions which came into effect on Nov 1 were of concern to the society as they will not only drive an unhealthy effect of policy-making in a secular Malaysia formed in 1963 but towards the nation’s development as a multi-ethnic, multi-faith country, according to the KL & Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (KLSCAH).

“The judicial amendments carried out by the Kelantan state government will not contribute to the development of our country as a Keluarga Malaysia; if a member of the family feels the tightening of laws in the house – especially in the context of ‘one family, two sets of laws’ – it will not make for a happy home,” KLSCAH pointed out.

“As anak Malaysia, we must fight to nurture and maintain our nation’s diversity.”

Although the Syariah Criminal Code (I) stated that it only applies to Muslims in Kelantan, the larger effect of a recent wave of conservative Islamisation is of concern to non-Muslims given the recent ban on liquor sales and the Timah issue, claimed KLSCAH.

On Nov 1, Sultan Muhammad V has consented to the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Code (I) Enactment 2019 to come into force. Under the enactment, Syariah courts will have the power to hear the cases in which the punishments include a jail term of not more than three years and a fine or six strokes of the rotan.

“It is hoped that the enforcement of the Syariah Criminal Code (I) Enactment 2019 will be beneficial in strengthening the syariah law, not only in Kelantan but also in other states in Malaysia,” Menteri Besar Datuk Ahmad Yakob told a briefing programme on the enactment on Oct 31.

He added the enforcement of the enactment was aimed at educating and bringing the offenders back to the right path of Islam, not just merely punishing them.

KLSCAH further pointed to how the original Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63) documented the dream to unite the Peninsula with its historically-significant Bornean counterparts – Sabah and Sarawak.

“To unite with them as the Federation of Malaysia will ensure that our legislative systems will be strengthened – and safeguarded – from both colonisation and Islamisation,” noted the assembly hall.

“As the increased fear of Islamisation continues to creep further into the country, none of us will rightly feel at home in Malaysia. All our forefathers, namely Tunku Abdul Rahman, will have their sweat and tears – towards building the nation – be seen going down the proverbial longkang (drain).” – Nov 5, 2021

Retrieved from Focus Malaysia

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