KUCHING (Oct 8): Democratic Action Party (DAP) secretary general Lim Guan Eng believes that Malaysians remain unconvinced with the assurances by Minister for Islamic Affairs Idris Ahmad in Parliament that the religious rights and freedom of non-Muslims will not be affected by the proposed RUU355 and the Bill to restrict the propagation of non-Islamic religions.
He alleged that since Parti Islam SeMalaysia (PAS) decided to break away from the late party leader Tok Guru Nik Aziz’s politics of moderation, tolerance and respect for non-Muslims, PAS had adopted a policy of hostility towards non-Muslims.
He further said PAS’ brand of extremism is highlighted by their support of the Taliban government in Afghanistan, which denies educational and employment opportunities to women.
“For Idris to claim that this proposed new legislation will only be enforced on Muslims, such as the bill to restrict the propagation of non-Islamic religions, reminds us of the justification by religious extremist preacher Syakir Nasoha, spreading lies against non-Muslims, that his insulting and derogatory remarks against non-Muslims were meant only for Muslims.
“Questions will continue to be raised whether these proposed laws by PAS contravene the Federal Constitution,” he said in a statement yesterday.
The Bagan MP asked for assurances from Law Minister Datuk Seri Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar who had earlier denied that the government intended to propose these laws.
He said Wan Junaidi should clarify, especially when the Sabah and Sarawak state governments have openly declared their opposition towards the proposals by PAS.
Wan Junaidi was reported by several news outlets as saying on September 7 that several Islamic Bills that had been talked about had not yet been raised in Cabinet meetings.
The Santubong MP from Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) also reportedly said that even if they were tabled in Parliament, the proposed laws must first have the consent of all the respective state rulers as Islam is under state jurisdiction.
Idris, who is also PAS vice-president, yesterday confirmed the Control on the Propagation of non-Muslim Religions Bill will be tabled in Parliament, but said it is not intended to restrict religious freedom among non-Muslims as they can proselytise their faiths among themselves.