Historic day for Brunei
Khal Baharulalam & Aziz Idris

TODAY marks an historic day as the Sultanate embraces the Syariah Penal Code Order 2013. His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan of Brunei Darussalam yesterday officially declared the implementation of the first phase of the Syariah Penal Code Order 2013 effective today, May 1, 2014 corresponding to 1st of Rejab 1435H.

In a titah delivered at the Declaration Ceremony for the Enforcement of the Syariah Penal Code Order 2013 at the International Convention Centre (ICC), the monarch said, “There was never an issue of postponement (in the implementation of the Syariah Penal Code Order 2013), as reported in the media. We have to understand the expression, ‘six months after the gazetting of the Order’, which up to this day is still under the period of six months.”

With its enforcement, His Majesty said we are repeating the history of Islamic Law that was practised centuries ago in the country.

“This is all a result of our determination to uphold Allah the Almighty’s religion in this country,” the monarch said, adding that Allah the Almighty has promised blessings for His servants who propagate Islam.

His Majesty quoted a Firman by Allah the Almighty in Surah Muhammad, Verse 7: “O ye faithful, if thou shall help (His religion) indeed Allah shall help (and defend thee to achieve His glory while staying firm with your stance in upholding the Truth).”

Praising Allah the Almighty, His Majesty expressed gratitude for the “fulfillment of our obligations as Muslims in the aspect of Islamic law”.

However, the monarch stressed that roles played by each individual is of vital importance, particularly that of relevant agencies, to implement the Order thoroughly with full responsibility, trust and discretion.

The monarch emphasised that Brunei Darussalam has never perceived other parties negatively for they are entitled to exercise their rights to choose anything that suits their perception.

Additionally, the Sultanate has never expected other nations to agree nor accept the decision to implement the Syariah Penal Code Order 2013, but it would be fair enough if they respect us the way we respect them.

Touching on the never-ending misconceptions and theories opposing the implementation of the Syariah Law, His Majesty stressed that the country should not pay much heed to such theories which, ultimately, end up being no more than just theories.

“Indeed, the demands from Allah the Almighty are not a theory and therefore, cannot be doubted. If theories suggest His Laws are cruel and unfair, why has Allah the Almighty Himself affirmed that His Laws are absolute; where is the value of that theory vis-à-vis His Commandment?” queried His Majesty in the titah.

The monarch affirmed that the decision to implement the Syariah Penal Code 2013 is not merely done but is on the principle of adhering to the commands of Allah the Almighty, as contained in the holy Quran and Hadiths.

His Majesty concluded his titah by commending the stance that the nation’s population has taken in supporting the implementation, including those who are non-Muslims.

“Full support was also given by members of the Legislative Council during its recent meeting,” His Majesty said in closing the titah. - Borneo Bulletin (1 May 2014)