Sisters in Islam (SIS) is outraged at the sentence that has been handed to the 45-year old widow who has pleaded guilty to the charge of preparation for the act of prostitution in Kuala Terengganu yesterday. The Terengganu Syariah High Court had ordered the woman to undergo a six-month rehabilitation period at the Baitul Ehsan Women’s Protection Centre in Sabak Bernam, Selangor and four strokes of the rotan. Syarie judge Kamalruazmi Ismail, who delivered the judgment had ordered that the caning be carried out at the Kajang Women’s Prison, Selangor.
We are alarmed at how deliberately the caning punishment was instructed by the Syariah High Court in Terengganu for execution in another state completely unrelated to the case. It is also worrying how that Prison Department, which is bound to the Home Ministry and Federal Law, is enabling this act to happen upon women.
We point out also that all the cases that have involved caning sentences in Terengganu since August this year were imposed on women, specifically those from minority groups and in the state of poverty.
SIS is extremely worried that this reflects selective and discriminatory administration of ‘justice,’ whereby women are systematically targeted and regarded as sources of ‘sin.’ This blatantly contradicts YB Datuk Dr Mujahid Yusof Rawa’s direction to uphold the concept of rahmatan lil alamin (compassion for all) as strongly prescribed by the Holy Quran. Furthermore, there is no indication that the men who are involved in these cases are even charged in these khalwat raids.
SIS reiterates our call for an immediate moratorium on all caning sentences as it is clear that caning, in whatever form, is a violation of human rights.
Sisters in Islam
11 October 2018