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Terengganu assembly tense over hudud issue

KUALA TERNGGANU, Dec 6 (Bernama) -- The Terengganu State Assembly sitting entered its second today amidst a tense atmosphere when the Chairman of the State Committee on Religion and Information, Khazan Che Mat was replying to an oral question from Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang (PAS-Ru Rendang).

Abdul Hadi wanted to know when Terengganu would propose to enforce and implement the Syariah criminal offence enactment as gazetted in 2002 by the government of Terengganu.

Khazan said to date the government could not promise the exact date for the enactment to be implemented.

However, he said the government would implement the enactment when all infrastructure and facilities were in place and when religious scholars felt its implementation was appropriate.

He said this was because many of the hudud laws implemented in the Islamic countries had brought about effects which religious scholars felt should not have happened.

Tension erupted when Khazan said this was what happened when religion was made a tool to garner support.

At that stage, Mohd Nor Hamzah (PAS-Bukit Payong) stood up to interject that he was not happy with the answer given by Khazan but was refused by the speaker.

But the member for Bukit Payong ignored the speaker's instruction to sit down until the speaker advised the member not to display uncouth behaviour.

Earlier, backbencher Rosol Wahid interjected by saying that the issue of hudud surfaced every time the election was approaching.

He said when PAS was administering Terengganu from 1999 to 2004, PAS president Abdul Hadi himself as Terengganu Menteri Besar on March 6, 2000 said the government was reluctant to implement hudud as it would only fulfil 0.0001 per cent or 1/10,000 of the need.

Khazan also said the current state government did not reject religion or Islam but the government did what it could afford by prioritising needs in the national contexts.

According to Khazan, the Terengganu government now was working towards the direction with 32 Syariah Court judges being sent for training at Syariah Court Justice Institute in Riyadh last year.

He said this year the state government would also be sending the judges involved for courses towards implementing hudud in Terengganu.



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