Archive for April 2009

KOTA KINABALU: Suhakam is hopeful that the Government will be more receptive this time to its proposal for a National Human Rights Action Plan as it will foster better relations between the Government and the people.

Commission deputy chairman Tan Sri Simon Sipaun said that such a plan would strengthen human rights practices in the country as it would spell out short and long-term measures for safeguarding human rights.

He said Suhakam met Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak in 2004 to discuss the action plan then.

He said that Najib, as the minister responsible for Suhakam, had appeared to be quite receptive to the idea but there had been no development since that meeting.

Sipaun said Malaysia was the only country in this region with a human rights commission, apart from the Philippines, Thailand and Indonesia, that had not drawn up such a plan as yet.

“Having this plan would reflect the Malaysian Government’s commitment towards human rights,” he said, adding that Suhakam was always prepared to work with the Government in drawing up such a plan.

On the release of the 13 detainees under the Internal Security Act yesterday, Sipaun said this was a positive development for human rights in Malaysia.

“The move clearly reflects the Prime Minister’s priority to ensuring human rights principles are respected,” he added.

Sipaun said Najib’s pledge of a re-look of the ISA was also an important development and lent high hopes among groups concerned with human rights here.

He said that while some were hoping for the abolition of the ISA, it was important to ensure for now that the ISA was not wrongly used.

“We hope never to see instances of the ISA being used indiscriminately such as the recent detention of journalists.

“The powers that be must always remember the original intention of the ISA which is to be used in situations of extreme threat to national security,” Sipaun added.

ISLAMABAD, April 4 — The Pakistani government has ordered an inquiry into the flogging of a 17-year-old woman by Taliban militants in the troubled Swat Valley, after public outrage triggered by shocking video footage of the punishment.

The images, played yesterday on private television channels, show a burka-clad woman being pinned to the ground by two men while a third whips her backside 34 times. The woman is seen screaming and begging for mercy as a crowd of largely silent men look on. She is accused of having had an illegal sexual relationship, according to local law. Her brother is among those restraining her.

Read the rest of this entry »


Malaysians have this thing where they hope some mighty champion will sweep down from the mountains and solve their problems for them.

LAST weekend I was at a public forum organised by ERA Consumer. It was held in Johor Baru. I have not been to JB for many years and I found that it has the largest concentration of modified Protons I have ever seen.

That’s not the point of this article though. The forum was held to get feedback from the public regarding ERA Consumer’s report on Suhakam’s 2006 Annual Report.

Read the rest of this entry »

FREE ALL ISA DETAINEES "The land belongs to the countless numbers of people who are dead, the few who are living and the multitude of those yet to be born". child2