Press Statement By Chong Chieng Jen:
The public statements by the Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Ahmad MarzukShaary, that the government is drafting 4 new Syariah laws, including “the Control and restriction on the propagation of non-Muslim Religious Bill” is a thing to be expected when the Sarawak’s GPS decided to put PAS to be part of the Federal Government.
Though the Minister of Law, Wan Junaidi, had come up with a statement denying any knowledge of such drafting, but Wan Junaidi’s jurisdiction under the PM’s department is different from that of Ahmad MarzukSharry. Wan Junaidi is the Minister of Law under the PM’s Department while Ahmad MarzukShaary is the Deputy Minister for Religious Affairs under the PM’s Department. Therefore, Wan Junaidi would not have full knowledge of what is going on in the Religious Affairs department under the PM’s Department.
Furthermore, Ahmad Marzuk has made several statements reiterating the drafting of such Bill, whereas the statement of Wan Junaidi was a very vague and non-committal one.
Therefore, short of the Prime Minister coming up with a clear statement denying the truth of Ahmad Marzuk’s statements, what Ahmad Marzuk said remains a valid cause for concern and anxiety by all who uphold freedom of religions in Malaysia.
The only consolation that we have is that Ahmad Marzuk had made it clear that this is a 5-year plan and that a General Elections will definitely be held in less than 5 years from now. We still have a chance to put PAS out of the Federal Government before the draft bills were tabled in Parliament.
With Sarawak’s GPS now making their stand very clear that they will prefer to go along with PAS to form the Federal Government, the only way for Sarawakians to help ensure that PAS will not continue to be part of the Federal Government is to reject GPS in the coming Elections. One less GPS Member of Parliament means one less chance for PAS to continue to be the Federal Government.
Chong Chieng Jen
DAP Sarawak Chairman