KUALA LUMPUR: Do not politicise the notice of petition filed by Nik Elin Zurina by linking the legal suit as an attempt to “challenge” the Syariah law in the country, warns Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Anwar told the Dewan Rakyat that such an attempt or agenda brought by irresponsible parties could overshadow the real issue of whether the state government has the authority to implement its own legislation without negotiating with the Federal Government.
“On the surface, it is a matter of the authority whether the state government can implement their own legislation or it must be discussed at the Federal level.
“This is not just about a substantive decision on syariah, it is the matter of jurisdiction the state holds. If all states make their own legislation, then a conflict will arise.
“Do not politicise the matter, and we should not taint the Federal Constitution which we have sworn over as we have due process and procedure,” he said on Tuesday (Nov 21).
Anwar was replying to a question from Mohd Azizi bin Abu Naim (PN-Gua Musang) on the Federal Government’s stance on the notice of petition filed by Nik Elin Zurina Nik Abdul Rashid and her daughter, which is seen as an attempt to challenge the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Code (I) Enactment 2019 and to state the efforts by the government to safeguard the Syariah-related laws.
On Monday (Nov 20), Perikatan Nasional leaders and lawmakers were seen gathered at the Palace of Justice in Putrajaya to protest against the legal challenge on the provisions of Kelantan’s syariah criminal enactment.
Last year, Nik Elin and her daughter Tengku Yasmin Nastasha Tengku Abdul Rahman filed a constitutional challenge against 18 provisions under Kelantan’s syariah criminal enactment.
In the petition, the mother-daughter duo argued that these provisions, which include punishments for incest, gambling, necrophilia, sodomy and sexual harassment, among others, were invalid as they were already covered by federal law.
Both also argued that the power to legislate criminal matters belongs to Parliament, as state assemblies only have the right to enact laws concerning the Islamic faith.
PAS held several similar protests in Terengganu on Nov 16 and in Kelantan two days later.