By G Vinod and Tarani Palani
PETALING JAYA: Former Selangor state executive councillor Hasan Ali has urged Malaysians to reject Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim, claiming the latter may legalise homosexual relationships in the country if he comes to power.
“This is why I cannot see eye to eye with Anwar. If homosexual relationship is legalised in the country, God forbid, there will be chaos in the country,” Hasan told reporters here today.
Hasan was responding to a report in a national Malay-daily Berita Harian yesterday which quoted Anwar as telling British media BBC that the Section 377B of the Penal Code should be repealed as it was archaic.
Section 337B of the Penal Code reads: “Whoever voluntarily commits carnal intercourse against the order of nature shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to twenty years, and shall also be liable to whipping.”
Anwar was recently acquitted by the High Court for allegedly sodomising his aide, Saiful Bukhari Azlan in 2008.
When told that Anwar was referring to repealing an old law that could even be used to prosecute heterosexuals, Hasan said he would have to check the matter with the ulamas.
“I have to refer to them. If they are in support, so be it. But we must remember it is an issue involving morals and religion,” he said.
Meanwhile at another press conference, PAS vice-president Mahfuz Omar refused to comment on Anwar’s statement but criticised the government’s lax response in dealing with transvestites.
He also said that his party headquarters, located at Jalan Raja Laut, was a hot spot for transvestites for the past several years.
“But no action was taken to deal with this problem to date,” said Mahfuz, who suggested that this group be given counseling.