Monday 13 August 2012

Secular state judgment reinterpreted?

Countering Karpal Singh, Muslim NGO Pembela claims that Salleh Abas in his 1988 judgment did not say Malaysia is secular. 

PETALING JAYA: A Muslim-based NGO has reinterpreted the judgment of former Lord President  Salleh Abas in the case of  Che Omar Che Soh vs PP and Wan Jalil Wan Abdul Rahman and Anor vs PP to rebut the claim of DAP national chairman Karpal Singh.

“Karpal has made a statement confusing everyone by stating that Salleh ruled that Malaysia is a secular state in the case of Che Omar Che Soh.

“Actually Salleh in that case opined that the law in practice in the year of 1988 is secular.

“Salleh did not rule that Malaysia is a secular state,” said Islam Defenders Organisations (Pembela) in a statement posted on their website.

Pembela’s statement comes in the wake of a DAP – PAS clash over the implementation of hudud.

Yesterday, the DAP veteran leader had suggested that Salleh, a PAS member and former Terengganu state exco, lecture PAS members enthusiastic to have an Islamic state about the Federal Constitution.

Delivering his judgment in 1988, Salleh said: “We have to set aside our personal feelings because the law in the country is still what is is today, secular law … Until the law and the system is changed, we have no choice but to proceed as we are doing today.”

Pembela further countered Karpal with another observation of the Federal Constitution.

“Not once is the word ‘secular’ mentioned in the highest law of this country,” said Pembela.

The Muslim group further said the Malay sultanates had given the green light for the Federal Constitution without the word secular.

It also argued that the continuity of the Malay Muslim rulers sovereignty remained since the formation of Malayan Federation.

In addition to that Pembela also warned political parties that opposed the notion of Islamic sovereignty in this country because it went against three tenets of Rukunegara: – Upholding the constitution, rule of the law, good behaviour and morality.

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