Home Ministry monitoring public sentiments against Federal Court ruling

Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail confirmed that his ministry is conducting a comprehensive monitoring on all matters that could lead to public unrest including the Federal Court’s decision in declaring 16 shariah offences of the Kelantan Shariah Criminal Code (I) 2019 as null and void.

A special team in Bukit Aman would probe exaggerated reactions related to the issue.

“The investigation will be completed within seven days before being handed over to the Attorney General’s Office.

“The Federal Court’s ruling specifically addressed the challenge, as said by the Chief Justice (Tun Tengku Maimun Tuan Mat), which is not related to challenging Islam or undermining the role of the Syariah court,” he said after the ministry’s monthly assembly.

“We believe the people will objectively assess the allegations that the decision challenges Islam, Syariah law, and so on.

“Continuous monitoring will be conducted (on factors contributing to public unrest), not specifically for this incident alone,” he said.

On another matter, he said that a stakeholders meeting over Prevention of Crime Act (POCA) 1959 would be held.

The meeting would include Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law and Institutional Reform) Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said and Digital Minister Gobind Singh Deo, as well as representatives from non-governmental organisations.

“We are aware that the court has made a decision that Section 4 of POCA is unconstitutional and the decision has gone through the appeal process ending in the Federal Court.

“The final decision by the Federal Court, affirming the High Court’s ruling, means we cannot enforce that section.

“As an enforcement agency, especially since this act, if enforced, covers several types of crimes to curb criminal incidents,” he said.

He hoped the outcome of the discussion would provide some input on the next steps to take.