Thursday, November 30, 2023
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KUALA LUMPUR, June 12 — The Annual Report of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) was debated by the MPs for the first time in the Dewan Rakyat today. Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Law and Institutional Reform) Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said said it was to enable a mature debate to strengthen the protection of human rights.

“The government believes that there must be a political commitment, not only to table the Suhakam annual report but also to debate and follow up with proposed solutions to resolve the issues that will be raised. “The Madani government is confident and believes that this debate session will give space and opportunity for all to have their voices heard through their respective representatives,” she said when tabling the report. She said Suhakam’s Annual Report 2020 was previously tabled in the Dewan Rakyat on May 25, but it was not debated.

The 2020 report consists of seven chapters that provide the details of activities carried out throughout the year as well as detailed administrative and financial reports, including on Orang Asli/Asal, human trafficking, refugees and asylum seekers, business and human rights, and Islam. Meanwhile, Azalina said various legislations had been amended for legal reform efforts for the sake of human rights, including the abolition of the mandatory death penalty and life imprisonment.

In addition, the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017 and the Evidence of Child Witness Act 2007 were also amended to give more extensive protection to children with the government also considering some further improvements and amendments to the same act as Phase II in the next Parliament session. Azalina said as evidence of the government’s commitment to ensuring that human rights continue to be guaranteed and preserved, the National Human Rights Action Plan 2.0 (NHRAP 2.0) is also being considered. She said it would cover more complete integration in various aspects including education, health, housing, social services and administration.


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