Umno pledges to amend Federal Constitution to strengthen syariah law

Malaysiakini Team
·2-min read
Umno pledges to amend Federal Constitution to strengthen syariah law
Umno pledges to amend Federal Constitution to strengthen syariah law

UMNO AGM | Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi has pledged to push for the amendment of the Federal Constitution to strengthen syariah law.

"When we secure two-thirds majority support in Parliament later, (we will) amend the constitution to ensure that our syariah law system is strengthened," he said when delivering his policy speech at the Umno annual general assembly 2020 at the PWTC today.

"Recently, the High Court made a ruling on the use of 'Allah' by non-Muslim. The decision had touched the feeling of Muslims in the country.

"In my opinion, the decision on Iki Putra Mubarak's case has a more serious implication," he said.

Zahid believed the ruling has huge implication and could possibly annul existing syariah criminal provisions and cripple Islamic law.

"The ruling could threaten the state's power of amending and enforcing the state's syariah criminal enactment," he said.

"We need to defend the ('Allah') word, we need to amend the constitution to defend our legal system," he added.

He said the ruling could threaten the power of the state rulers.

On March 10, Kuala Lumpur High Court ruled that the government erred in issuing the 1986 ban on the use of the word "Allah" by non-Muslims.

The court had allowed the legal challenge by Melanau Christian Jill Ireland.

In the long-running saga, Ireland initially instituted an action for the return of Malay-language Christian CDs and religious books seized by Customs officers at the Kuala Lumpur Low-Cost Terminal (LCCT), Sepang, in 2008.

Putrajaya had appealed the ruling.

In the case of Iki Putra Mubarak, the Federal Court last month struck down a provision of the Selangor syariah law that criminalises "unnatural sex".

The apex court allowed the applicant's legal challenge against Section 28 of the Syariah Criminal Offences (Selangor) Enactment 1995 on the grounds that the matter falls under the jurisdiction of federal and not state laws.

The state syariah provision makes it an offence for Muslims in Selangor to perform "sexual intercourse against the order of nature".

The man faces an ongoing related case at the Selangor Syariah High Court, where he has been charged under the provision with an alleged attempt to commit unnatural sexual intercourse.

He had gone to the Federal Court to seek a declaration that Section 28 is invalid, on the ground that it makes provision with respect to a matter with which the Selangor State Assembly has no power to make laws on, and is thus, null and void.

Reporting by Kow Gah Chie, Haspaizi Zain, Ng Xiang Yi, Ramieza Wahid and Low Choon Chyuan.

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