PAS ‘guard of hon­our’ un­der fire

Patriot un­happy with party’s vol­un­teer corps ‘mil­i­tary’ at­tire

The Star Malaysia - - Nation - Re­ports by JOSEPH KAOS Jr, JO TIMBUONG and FATIMAH ZAINAL news­desk@thes­tar.com.my

KUALA TERENG­GANU: PAS vol­un­teer corps at­tired in “mil­i­tary” dress uni­forms has caused a hooha, with the De­fence Min­is­ter step­ping in to say that a meet­ing would be held soon to de­cide whether laws have been breached.

PAS Youth, on its part, said it would look into com­plaints raised by Na­tional Pa­tri­ots As­so­ci­a­tion (Patriot) about the uni­forms donned by the party’s vol­un­teer corps, Ja­batan Amal, dur­ing Satur­day’s open­ing of the PAS gen­eral as­sem­bly when party pres­i­dent Datuk Seri Ab­dul Hadi Awang in­spected the “guard of hon­our”. PAS Youth cre­ated the Ja­batan Amal.

Patriot, which is a group of mil­i­tary and po­lice vet­er­ans, had ob­jected to the at­tire, say­ing that it was un­law­ful for non-mil­i­tary mem­bers to wear at­tire re­sem­bling those of the armed forces.

Yes­ter­day, PAS Youth chief Muham­mad Khalil Ab­dul Hadi ac­knowl­edged the dis­sat­is­fac­tion aired by for­mer ser­vice­men.

“We will re­view it and cor­rect any mis­take,” he said.

How­ever, Muham­mad Khalil felt it was not a big is­sue as MPs, as­sem­bly­men and scouts also wore sim­i­lar-look­ing uni­forms.

“Those who wear it com­plete with medals and ranks are ac­tu­ally for­mer mem­bers of the armed forces,” he claimed.

Patriot pres­i­dent Brig-Jen (Rtd) Datuk Mo­hamad Ar­shad Raji, in a state­ment, cited Section 140 of the Pe­nal Code which out­lined the pun­ish­ment for those who wear the garb of a soldier, sailor or air­man.

“The guard of hon­our in the mil­i­tary and the po­lice, per­formed in full cer­e­mo­nial dress, is usu­ally per­formed as a mark of re­spect for mem­bers of the roy­alty, prime min­is­ter, deputy prime min­is­ter, de­fence min­is­ter, and gen­er­als.

“It is a se­ri­ous mat­ter and not to be in­dis­crim­i­nately used by any or­gan­i­sa­tion so as to make a mock­ery of this very dig­ni­fied mil­i­tary tra­di­tion,” he said.

In Kota Kinabalu, De­fence Min­is­ter Mo­hamad Sabu said he would hold a min­is­te­rial-level dis­cus­sion over the is­sue.

“We will dis­cuss this at the min­is­te­rial level to see what ac­tion can be taken.

“We will see whether they are al­lowed to wear it or not,” said Mo­hamad af­ter mak­ing a cour­tesy call to Sabah Chief Min­is­ter Datuk Seri Shafie Ap­dal here yes­ter­day.

corps Ja­batan Amal.

Con­tro­ver­sial uni­forms: Ab­dul Hadi in­spect­ing the guard of hon­our made up of mem­bers of the party’s vol­un­teer

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