KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 14 — PAS will continue its push to strengthen the Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 even if the Barisan Nasional (BN) government reneges on its promise to table it in Parliament, the Islamist party’s information chief Nasrudin Hassan said.
Hassan said the party’s proposal to amend the law, also known as Act 355 is a long-term goal, and it will not be dissuaded from achieving it, Malay daily Sinar Harian reported today.
“Not just BN, but any parties which want to question this matter midway later, what can PAS do?
“We will continue to provide explanations on this matter. Not just for the public, but also parliamentarians. PAS will not stop trying. It is not PAS that created these laws, but these are laws of Allah SWT,” he was quoted saying.
Nasrudin said PAS is well prepared for any outcome relating to the decision on amending Act 355, which may be raised again when the Dewan Rakyat reconvenes in March.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced at the Umno general assembly last year that the federal government would take over PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang’s bid to amend the said Bill.
Hadi’s Bill now proposes to increase Shariah punishment caps to a maximum 30 years’ imprisonment, RM100,000 fine and 100 lashes of the cane.
It previously sought to remove all limits to Shariah punishments save for the death penalty.
Shariah court punishments are currently limited to jail terms not exceeding three years, whipping of not more than six strokes, or fines of not more than RM5,000.
Detractors have argued that the Bill is a back-door method to introduce the strict hudud law in the country.