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Umno forced to eat humble pie on conversion bill
Published:  Jul 6, 2013 2:20 AM
Updated: 4:35 AM

YOURSAY ‘Next, demand an RCI for electoral fraud because having foreigners vote to determine the future of the country cannot be taken any less lightly than the unilateral conversion of a child.’

Cabinet withdraws controversial conversion bill

your say FellowMalaysian: The amendment to section 107(b) of the Administration of Islamic Law (Federal Territories) Act is seen as being disrespectful to the non-Muslim communities and its proposal has created such an uproar that even coalition parties within BN, which usually acquiesced to Umno's command, has sounded their collective displeasure and indignation over the tabling of this amendment bill.

DPM Muhyiddin Yassin's latest announcement in withdrawing this inflammatory amendment is welcomed by the public, especially by those mothers who fear the inherent and potential harm that such a law may pose to the well-being of her children should their marriage turned sour.

Muhyiddin's intervention is seen as an opportune respite in mollifying the intense distress that this bill has created, but such harrowing and onerous religious issues could only be resolved if the government is sincere, courageous and benevolent enough in doing so.

Odin: Muhyiddin, you said that in the R Subashini vs T Saravanan case, the Federal Court interpreted the word 'parent' in the singular. DAP MP Karpal Singh has said that the said court was wrong in that instance. I totally agree with him.

Quite beside the fact that provision has been made for the interpretation of all words appearing in the federal constitution which are stated in one sex to also include the other sex, and that all words in the singular to also include the plural forms, it is obvious to me that the judges concerned were misled by the word 'guardian', which is singular, that as it is singular, then 'parent' is also singular.

But the 'guardian' of a person (a child or an incapacitated or an incompetent adult) is always regarded or referred to in the singular form, even if he is a man who is married and has a wife.


Quigonbond: A full bench of the Federal Court should be constituted to review the Subashini case. Because of Subashini:

1. Husbands abuse the lacuna to wrest custody from their wives by converting to Islam;

2. The federal government is seen to support cynical conversion and false devotion to Allah;

3. It makes a mockery of the gender equality provision in the constitution by treating husbands better than the wives.

We don't want another five years to go by while this issue continues to fester. All minority parties in BN should also realise that with a weakened BN, they better buck up in terms of demanding transparency, accountability and fairness in all of future cabinet decisions.

It is incredible they took so long to finally grow a backbone - if they did that post-2008, Pakatan Rakyat would not have gathered strength. Now that Malaysians know when enough cabinet ministers speak up and things can change, the expectation can only grow.

Next must be to demand an RCI for electoral fraud because having foreigners vote to determine the future of the country cannot be taken any less lightly than the unilateral conversion of a child.


Vijay47: I hope that Muhyiddin and the rest of his gang are not looking forward to applause and adulation from a grateful Malaysia. There is nothing to be thankful about as this shameful bill should never have been tabled in the first place.

The whole world is progressing and moving ahead while thanks to morons such as these, Malaysia is travelling in the opposite direction. Compliance with the supreme law, fairness, and basic decency were discarded by Muhyiddin and that equally contemptible Home Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

All this in the name of religion merely to ensure the continuance of a criminal regime. Crass politicians aside, that excuse of a person supposedly learned in law, that miserable attorney-general should be sacked.

Why did he not from the very beginning advise against the bill knowing that it was in contravention of the constitution? Expecting him to resign will be a never-ending exercise in futility. What must he do for him to be dismissed?

Abasir: Vijay47 has expressed, both eloquently and accurately, the sentiments felt by all outraged Malaysians.

Perhaps the only point I could add is that Pakatan's Muslim parliamentarians must be heaving a loud and collective sigh of relief considering the quandary they found themselves in - having to publicly choose between what is decent and what would bring political dividends. Shame on them!

Elsewhere, I had commented the following, a comment worth repeating at this juncture: One of the more interesting facts to have emerged from this 'legislative' debacle is that some Pakatan lawmakers professing Islam and who periodically spout verses in Arabic for theatrical effect are wondering if the proposed nonsense is "in line with the teachings of Prophet Muhammad".

While this Prufrockian doubt is in itself a curiosity, it is even more curious that common decency, an abiding sense of fairness and empathy for affected persons of other faiths have no place in their hearts and minds.

Malaysians now need to reflect whether these are the people best suited to take over from the current regime or whether change (when it happens) will merely be a case of the same old nasty Umno hooch in new bottles.

Paul Warren: And now, I challenge the individual states that have this same laws applicable within to start the process of repealing the said identical act.

I challenge Hannah Yeoh, the speaker of the Selangor State Assembly to host such a proposal. I challenge CM Lim Guan Eng to do the same in Penang. If you guys can't do this at your state level repeal this act, then forever hold your peace on this matter.

Aries46: Earlier in supporting its tabling of the amendment bill, Muhyiddin said it had been discussed at length in the cabinet, that it was based on a Federal Court decision and constitutional provisions, etc.

Now in withdrawing the bill, he says the cabinet has decided to withdraw the bill due to various views considered by the component parties. Whatever it is, those who spoke up on the demerits of the bill need to be complemented for a job well done.

Onyourtoes: Why are we praising the cabinet for withdrawing the bill? Why are we not asking why the cabinet has introduced the bill in the first place?

Was the cabinet blind? Was the cabinet out of sync with the people of this country? Was the cabinet deliberately doing it to "test" the reaction of the people?

Was the cabinet doing it to see how far they can go bullying Umno's partners in BN? Was the cabinet doing it to create disunity among the Pakatan component parties?

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