Umno vows not to put hudud in national election manifesto

Mohamad Hasan said making such promises would be tantamount to cheating the public and vowed that the party would not introduce hudud on a federal level. — Picture by Farhan Najib
Mohamad Hasan said making such promises would be tantamount to cheating the public and vowed that the party would not introduce hudud on a federal level. — Picture by Farhan Najib

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 7 — Umno or PAS cannot insert hudud in their federal-level election manifesto as the Islamic penal codes fall under the purview of state governments and not Putrajaya, Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan said today.

Speaking in a dialogue session with Malay daily Sinar Harian, the Umno acting president said making such promises would be tantamount to cheating the public and vowed that the party would not introduce hudud on a federal level.

“This Shariah law is for the state level and not the federal level, because Islamic matters are under the purview of the Sultans and states,” said the former Negri Sembilan mentri besar.

“It is up to the states. Perhaps if Selangor does not agree, it is up to Selangor. If the Selangor monarch does not agree, it is up to His Majesty.

“Because the supreme person, or who is powerful enough in states on religious matters, are the Sultans, and not [those at] the federal level. So it cannot be made a federal manifesto by PAS or Umno.

“If we do, it clearly shows we want to cheat people so we won’t do it. God willing,” Mohamad said.

He was answering a question posed by an audience member who asked if Umno would be able to accept PAS’ condition to have the hudud as a prerequisite to continue their political cooperation.

PAS had initially attempted a Shariah Bill in Parliament as a means to introduce hudud, the Islamic penal code, in Kelantan and eventually Malaysia, but later retracted this to claim they were only seeking to enhance the powers of the Shariah courts.

The bid triggered a bitter row with former ally DAP, leading to the eventual collapse of Pakatan Rakyat, the precursor to the ruling Pakatan Harapan.

It has since flirted with the idea of a political alliance with arch-rival Umno in a move seemingly aimed at consolidating conservative Malay political power, and had even back out of several by-elections, allowing Umno to contest.

In 2015, PAS Ulama wing chief Datuk Mahfodz Mohamed had insisted that Umno state its support for the implementation of hudud if it intends to foster cooperation with rival PAS, citing the breakdown of cooperation between the two federal opposition parties.

Datuk Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki, who is now Umno Youth chief, had then said that Umno has never rejected hudud as it is the law of God.