Nov 9 hearing for PAS bid to strike out anti-hudud suit

Party still undecided about submitting fresh Bill on Islamic criminal code to Parliament

KUALA LUMPUR • Malaysia's High Court yesterday set aside Nov 9 to decide on an application by Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) president Abdul Hadi Awang to strike out a lawsuit brought by four individuals trying to block the party from tabling a Bill that would pave the way for it to implement hudud in Parliament.

Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi's lawyer and PAS secretary-general Takiyuddin Hassan, announcing this to reporters in Kuala Lumpur, also said the party had submitted that the High Court should strike out the suit as the court had no power to question parliamentary proceedings, Malaysian media reports said.

The four plaintiffs are seeking a declaration that Mr Abdul Hadi's attempt to introduce the Islamic criminal law or hudud in Kelantan, by bringing the debate into the federal Parliament and amending a federal law, is against the country's Constitution.

The Kelantan government, which is led by PAS, in March passed amendments to the state's Islamic criminal code to pave the way to implement the law there. The hudud law, among others, has provisions for death by stoning for adultery .

The four plaintiffs are lawyer Mansoor Saat, activist Azira Aziz and researchers Hasbeemaputra Abu Bakar and Hazwany Jamaluddin.

Datuk Takiyuddin also said the party was still deciding on whether it would submit a fresh private member's Bill on the hudud issue to Parliament.

Mr Abdul Hadi had submitted the Bill earlier this year, but it was not debated in the last two sittings because of a lack of time.

Meanwhile, PAS has denied media reports that it has entered into a formal partnership with the Malay rights group Perkasa.

The reports said that the top leaders of the two sides held an official meeting yesterday, where they agreed to formally work together.

PAS said it had only received a courtesy call from the group, and they agreed on three issues.

These included calling for the release of former Umno branch leader Khairuddin Abu Hassan and his lawyer Matthias Chang, who were charged on Monday with attempting to sabotage the Malaysian economy as well as the financial and banking system.

Khairuddin was detained last month after he launched a global campaign to highlight alleged corruption involving Prime Minister Najib Razak and state investor 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

They also supported the recent call by the country's royal rulers for the authorities to swiftly conclude investigations into 1MDB, and urged the government to be transparent on the Trans-Pacific Partnership deal signed by 12 countries, including Malaysia, last week.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 14, 2015, with the headline 'Nov 9 hearing for PAS bid to strike out anti-hudud suit'. Print Edition | Subscribe