By Ida Lim
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 18 ― Religion should not be politicised as doing so would only further divide the country, MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said today.
He was responding to questions on MCA’s stand on the issues of the Islamic state and laws, following the recent spotlight on hudud.
“We should not have any more divisions by having religion as a political agenda, be it any religion,” Dr Chua told reporters today after speaking at the MCA Selangor state convention.
He said, “We accept and respect Islam as the religion of the Federation.”
“But we felt (that) in a multiracial society, religion ― irrespective of any religion ― should not be a political agenda; (otherwise it) then it becomes very divisive to the society.”
He noted that there are already “racial divisions” among Malaysians.
“That is why we support [Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s] 1 Malaysia, which is inclusive, taking recognition that Malaysia is a multiracial country and all people have all sorts of religion.
“Each religion [has] its own sensitivity but we just have to accept these diversities exist,” he added.
Umno leaders and its Utusan Malaysia newspaper have in the past week accused the DAP members of being “kafir harbi”, or belligerent infidels, and declared it “haram” (forbidden) for Muslims to support the secular PR party.
DAP’s Karpal Singh yesterday said that hudud laws ― the Islamic penal code ― “can only be applied in an Islamic state”, whereas Malaysia was a secular country.
“Our constitution provides for a secular state, and in Malaysia, it is secular law which applies. You must have an Islamic state before we can have hudud law,” Karpal had said.
Dr Chua had earlier this week reportedly said that hudud laws could be implemented if the federal opposition Pakatan Rakyat takes over Putrajaya.
“Muslim MPs, regardless of any political party, are bound to give their vote for its implementation should PAS move a motion in Parliament,” he was quoted as saying by The Star.
The MCA-owned newspaper reported him as saying PAS would then be able to get a two-thirds majority vote to amend the Federal Constitution and implement hudud laws.