Last updated on 03/05/2014 - 07:37
02/05/2014 - 09:30
OUTSPOKEN: You are wrong to think that hudud will not affect the non-Malays. Historical and cultural treasures, like the Bamiyan statues in Afghanistan and the ancient Sufi shrines in Timbuktu, Mali were destroyed because they were perceived as idols. Recently, one retired judge criticised the statues outside Batu Caves and the Buddhist temples in Penang. What had he in mind?
The women of Afghanistan have to fight for the right to an education. Saudi women are banned from driving. The women and children of these countries are frequently abused. The Muslim countries with hudud are not free of rape, incest, adultery or corruption.
Do you know of any strict Muslim countries where the people are not oppressed or are not trying to escape to the West and claim asylum?
Divorced Malay women confide that Syariah laws are discriminatory. Many of them fought expensive and time-consuming battles to get what is rightfully theirs, but most gave up halfway.
First wives complain that their husbands marry again without first obtaining their permission. Men look for loopholes in Syariah laws whilst women claim that the laws are poorly enforced. A fine of a thousand ringgit for the men is not a deterrent.
The Malaysian judiciary was compromised in the 1980s and today, we don’t have faith in the civil law. Why should we trust the Syariah law, where the more powerful voices invoke the name of God to force others into submission?
There have been several miscarriages of justice, so it would be wrong to consider hudud. Once a limb is gone, it cannot be regrown.
Two words describe the cause of the rot in our judiciary and religious institutions: Mahathir Mohamad. In the 1980s, Mahathir compromised the judiciary and started the Allah row.
The non-Malays believe that Malays are privileged because Malays are the beneficiaries of affirmative action policies. Only Malays qualify for certain government tenders. Only Malays are eligible for certain land applications or scholarships. Fewer hurdles are presented for Malays wishing to enter the armed forces or the civil service.
Umno Baru courts the Malays and “reward” them with discriminatory policies. Their ulterior motive is not their love of the Malay. These policies are designed to ensure that Umno Baru can count on the Malay vote. “You vote for me, and I’ll give you some titbits”, is the usual Umno Baru mantra. The “cream” is reserved for the Umno Baru elite.
No one need envy the Malays because they are the most oppressed, most despised and the most restricted race in Malaysia.
The Malay emerges from his mother’s womb, a Muslim, whether he likes it or not. If he tries to speak a language other than Malay, he will be told that he is unpatriotic. He dare not voice his thoughts, for fear of being accused of blasphemy. He will not eat in a non-Malay restaurant or visit a non-Malay house for fear that he will consume something haram.
Malays are refused entry to a Church if they want to pay their respects to a Christian friend who has died. Malays may have his eyes and heart set on a non-Malay girl, but they are forewarned that they are courting trouble. Malay girls cannot be alone with their boyfriends, lest they be accused of “khalwat”. Malays can’t visit a friend’s house for Christmas, Chinese New Year or Deepavali because some mullah has deemed it un-Islamic.
If the Malay woman is single, she would be well advised to make a will, in case she dies before her parents, as it is alleged that the state religious body has more rights over her estate, than her parents. Perhaps, someone could clarify this very disturbing point.
Most sane and civilised people do things without suffering consequences, unlike the Malays. Their religious indoctrination is reinforced at Friday prayers, where they are forced to listen to political rather than community-based sermons.
Umno Baru keeps harping on about being the only party which can protect the Malays. Protect them from what? Umno Baru politicians say this because they are anxious about Malays rejecting Umno Baru and joining PAS, thus diluting the Malay vote. It is all about votes. Votes mean power (to dictate terms), control (of businesses) and money (to siphon off).
PAS is playing a dangerous game when promoting the implementation of hudud. Malays who disagree with hudud will rush into the arms of Umno Baru. Both the Malays and non-Malays must oppose hudud.
Hudud will signal the end of Malaysia as we know it. In 2001, Mahathir declared Malaysia to be an Islamic state. He is wrong. Malaysia is not an Islamic state. It is a secular state.
Why did Mahathir say this? He did this because he “did not like PAS harping on about an Islamic state”. Mahathir is the master manipulator and he made a political statement which few dared to challenge.
In 1962, former Lord President of the Federal Court Tun Mohamad Suffian wrote that under Article 3, Islam in Malaysia is “primarily for ceremonial purposes, for instance, to enable prayers to be offered in the Islamic way on official public occasions such as the installation of the birthday of the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Independence Day and similar occasions.”
We cannot tackle large scale, open corruption, cheating and murder. Our judiciary is compromised. And yet some of us want hudud for crimes covering theft, fornication, adultery and alcohol consumption.
Are we to end up like Iran or Afghanistan, with public hangings or stoning in which people are seen lusting for more blood and violence? Countries with hudud have not stopped rapes or adultery. Let’s go to the nation and have a referendum on hudud. Let’s have a proper debate, covering all the major stakeholders, like bankers, investors, human rights NGOs, educationists; and then let the people decide.
Somehow, we must insist that the voting in the referendum is not rigged, as in the political election.
Mariam Mokhtar is "a Malaysian who dares to speak the truth."
- See more at: http://www.theantdaily.com/Outspoken/Hudud-is-the-start-of-the-slippery-slope-to-hell/#sthash.YeaYify3.dpuf