Among the main headlines of Utusan on 24th April is the title “Hudud hanya gimik Pas”. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in the news report described the decision of Pas to raise again the issue of the implmentantion of hudud law as a mere political gimmick. On the same day, Utusan also published five reports regarding the implementation of Hudud meanwhile Sinar Harian on the 25th April published two news reports on the decision of Parti Islam Semalaysia (PAS) to implement the hudud law in the country.
The rumours of the hudud law spread from the news report by The Star on 23rd of April 2013that reported the Deputy Mursyidul Am Pas, Datuk Dr Harun Din confirming the intention of Pas to implement the hudud law post 13th General Election (GE13) if it is won by PAKATAN.
Prior to the news report in the The Star, Berita Harian had published a report saying that the Democratic Action Party (DAP) party insisted they will reject the implementation of the hudud law and the concept of an Islamic country although they had to borrow PAS’s symbol to allow them to contest in the GE13.
The act by Utusan to raise the question of the implementation of the hudud law almost a week after DAP’s decision to use PAS’s and KEADILAN’s symbol to contest in the GE13 can be seen as an act to create a wedge between the opposition political parties of DAP, PAS and KEADILAN, post the decision of the Registrar of Societies (ROS) on the illegality of DAP’s central executive committee (CEC).
DAP’s decision to use PAS’s symbol before KEADILAN as a backup is symbolic to the direction of both parties. It shows that both parties have come to a consensus, a compromise. Thus, the efforts by the pro Barisan Nasional (BN) media, particularly the pro-UMNO is nothing more than an attempt to sabotage the relationship between the new relationship of PAS and DAP.
The leader in the hudud law script is Utusan in which last year, in a report titled, “Polemik hukum hudud Pas”, claimed PAS had distorted the hudud law until it not only it violated what was regulated by Islam, it also confused the public and used the question of the implementation of the hudud law as a political weapon. Even though Dewan Ulama Chief, Datuk Harun Taib had replied to Utusan’s report to give their explanantion on the PAS’s standpoint on the implementation of hudud, PAS was still made target of Utusan. When PAS attempted to explain the hudud law that was to be implemented by Utusan, it was labelled as a hudud law based on PAS and not on Islam. This is a form of political slander. It defames PAS as a political party that arbitrarily politicizes the question of religion. It is was also done to cause gap between PAS and multi-ethnic Malaysians.
The question is whether a post 13GE, will hudud be implemented by PAS? Not only hudud is not enshrined in the Constitution, it is also not stated in the PAKATAN’s manifesto. This was the consensus PAKATAN. Thus, any decision to implement hudud law depends on the consent of all three parties – DAP, PAS and KEADILAN. Given that KEADILAN and DAP still does not want to implement hudud, PAS’s opportunity to implement hudud law is slim, if not, none.
The pro-Umno and BN media in 2013 repeats the old tactic to create a feeling of animosity and doubt amongst the three parties. In fact, in a writing from Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Hassan, he took the opportunity to explain the meaning and purpose of hudud. According to him, there many understandings to what hudud is. Among them are the hudud that follow the classical and modern stream-based time and their environment. He continued, by saying factors such as human rights, justice matters political, economic, social and humanitarian matters must be taken into consideration. Similarly, so is the question of the realities of the local Malaysian society and whether the judicial system in Malaysia especially the Shariah courts are qualified to implement the hudud law.
While the alternative media has decided to ignore the question of implementation of hudud law, media pro UMNO decides to do otherwise. While the pro-Umno media used the question of the implementation of hudud as a weapon to cause distrust amongst the three political parties, so is the question of the hudud law that was passed by the PAS government in (1999-2005) that is still in effect as is is not yet revoked the BN government.
For all three political parties, the question of the implementation of hudud law is not a matter of priority by PAKATAN. The purpose and main objective is to win Putrajaya PAKATAN and implement PAKATAN manifesto. Thus, the action taken by the media pro-BN and BN party was made in mala fide and instead of encouraging discussion, it was done to defame and defile PAKATAN’s image as a coalition of political parties without a single direction.
Where pro-BN media reported PAS will force the implementation of hudud, they should also have reported the statement by PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi stating PAS will not force the DAP, to accept the implementation of hudud.
BN uses the implementation of hudud law as weapon of fear against the Malaysian people. However the Malaysians who are also increasingly technocrats, have used technology to find the discrepancies of the pro-BN media as opposed to the alternative media reports. While pro-BN media has decided to scare the public, Malaysians are no longer easily fooled by this tactic. Malaysians believe that PAS will not force the implementation of hudud on the people of this country. PAS too should be providing an explanation to Malaysians on hudud law. PAS has given their consent to the implemention of PAKATAN’s Manifesto and that is their direction.
Meanwhile PAS is not in a rush to implement hudud law in the country, certain irresponsible parties have decided to use picture’s President and the Musyidul Am Pas using words that read as follows, “Hudud is the only way to fight crime “in Chinese. This action is to frighten the Chinese voters towards PAS during this PRU3. This is although the main objective of PAS is to implement the PAKATAN’s manifesto instead of hudud law.
Similarly, in 2012 when the newspaper Sin Chew Daily that produced a news report saying that PAS would implement hudud law after winning the 13th General Elections. The report was denied by PAS Deputy President Mohamad Sabu whom insisted he never mentioned the word ‘hudud’ in the interview with the newspaper.
The question of distorting the implementation of hudud did not exclude the President of Malaysian Chinese Assocation (MCA) for the state of Kedah, Datuk Chong Itt Chew, in which the news media in reporting by Sinar Harian on August 21, 2012, it was reported that Kedah MCA said he supported the implementation of hudud law. According to Datuk Chong Itt Chew, he never mentioned the word ‘hudud’ to the Sinar Harian reporter.
Thus, the question of distorting the truth of the implementation of hudud is not the first time it has happened in the pro-BN media and BN itself. Malaysians are wise enough to draw their own conclusion and opinions on this issue. And in this course towards GE13, the BN has proven itself capable of commiting anything in order to gain votes, even if it means defaming PAKATAN. BN’s desperation indirectly indicates that BN feels threatened by the strength of the relationship between the opposition party. They are trying to intimidate people even though the people of Malaysia are no longer easily fooled or easily frightened away by such fear tactics. Raising the question on hudud law implementation is not a political gimmick by PAS as claimed by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak. Instead, it is a dirty gimmick by BN in which it will backfire on BN on the 5th of May 2013.