The Penang government today described PAS’ allegation that it had interfered in the state fatwa committee decisions as "slanderous".
State executive councillor Abdul Malik Kassim said such a remark should not have come from an Islamic party leader.
“Islam does not condone slander,” he said at a press conference, accompanied by DAP's Bukit Bendera MP and Penang Institute CEO Zairil Khir Johari.
Malik also urged PAS not to "insult the professionalism" of the local councils by saying that they have acted unfairly towards Malay hawkers and businesses.
He listed down a host of achievements such as Penang International Halal Hub, Yayasan Islam, premium state land to rebuild the syariah court, and the development of the first syariah compliant hospital, which have all been initiated by the state government.
On the amendments to Syariah Courts (Criminal Jurisdiction) Act 1965 or Act 355 tabled by PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang in Parliament, which DAP and PKR had decided not to support, Malik said this was a legal matter and the law has not been passed yet.
He said to enforce Act 355, the Federal Constitution should be amended.
“How can PAS accuse Penang of rejecting the Islamic law and not allowing it to be practiced at the syariah court when the matter has not been debated and passed in Parliament?” Malik asked.
He was responding to the remarks by Penang PAS commissioner Fauzi Yusof that the state government led by DAP and PKR has marginalised the Muslims and Malays.
One of the most controversial claims was that the Penang government allegedly interfered in the issuing of fatwa (religious edicts).
State mufti Wan Salim Mohd Noor has denied the claims, explaining the procedures for fatwa in Penang.
He urged all quarters not to politicise the decisions on fatwas issued by the state or national committees.
Fauzi’s remarks came about after Hadi snubbed the olive branch by DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang to join forces to "save Malaysia from becoming a global kleptocracy".
The Gelang Patah MP had invited Hadi to join DAP, PKR, Parti Amanah Bersatu and newly-minted Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, led by former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad, to topple BN at the coming national polls.
Malik said the Malays and Muslims in the state have achieved so much more than they did before 2008, during Umno and Gerakan’s rule.
He said Malay rights are not only protected but have increased during Pakistan Harapan’s tenure.
“This truth cannot be denied by any quarters,” Malik added.- Mkini