Cabinet must meet immediately to discuss Federal Court ruling, says Pasir Gudang MP

JOHOR BARU: The Cabinet must have a meeting immediately to discuss the Federal Court’s decision to rule that 16 provisions of the Kelantan syariah criminal law were unconstitutional, says Hassan Karim.

The Pasir Gudang MP said that the ruling was a major decision that the Cabinet should discuss as soon as possible as it touches on several significant issues.

“First, this (the ruling) will determine how far a state assembly can go in making syariah laws.

“Secondly, it also puts into question the division of power between the Federal and state governments in matters involving Islam in a Federalised system that puts Islam as the official religion.

“Thirdly, it also puts into question the position of the Malay Rulers as the head of Islam in the states, who have consented to Enactments by the state assembly,” he said in a statement Saturday (Feb 10).

He said that the Cabinet should not leave Federal laws related to the position of Islam and syariah laws to be left solely to the court.

“The role of the court is to interpret laws. The role of enacting, amending or abolishing laws is under the purview of Parliament.

“This is the separation of power principle practised in Malaysia.

“If there is a Court decision that is not in line with the wishes of the Muslim community, then it is the responsibility of the Federal government to look into the need for amending the Constitution so that there will not be other petitions that would abolish syariah laws in other states,” he said.

On Friday (Feb 9), the Federal Court ruled that 16 provisions of the Kelantan syariah criminal law were unconstitutional.

In an 8-1 majority decision, the apex court allowed the application by a mother and daughter duo who challenged 18 provisions under the Kelantan Syariah Criminal Code Enactment 2019.