LFL: Inquest into custody death proof IPCMC is needed

Source: FMTNews

Human rights NGO says Attorney-General and IGP must take issues of state violence more seriously.

Lawyer Eric Paulsen, who represented the family of the deceased P. Karuna Nithi, says a deputy public prosecutor had written to Coroner Datuk Jagjit Singh to reopen the inquest. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, July 1, 2015.

Lawyer Eric Paulsen, who represented the family of the deceased P. Karuna Nithi, says a deputy public prosecutor had written to Coroner Datuk Jagjit Singh to reopen the inquest. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, July 1, 2015.

PETALING JAYA: Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) has reiterated its call for an Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC).

The human rights NGO’s Executive Director Eric Paulsen said the IPCMC could function as an independent and external oversight body to investigate complaints about police personnel. The IPCMC is a powerful police watchdog mooted by a Royal Commission of Inquiry in 2005.

This latest call by the LFL comes following the decision of the Seremban Coroner’s Court today that there was no new material evidence produced by a Health Ministry-convened Inquiry Committee’s Report into the death of a detainee, P. Karuna Nithi, 42, at the Tampin police station lock-up on June 1, 2013.

The coroner, who reopened the inquest into the custody death, found the report to be not reliable or credible. Read more

Press freedom in Asia-Pacific has gotten significantly worse – RSF

Source: Asian Correspondent

Pic: Reporters Without Borders

MEDIA freedom has “worsened significantly or stagnated” in most of the Asia-Pacific region, according to the 2016 World Press Freedom Index.

The latest rankings measuring journalistic freedom and independence in 180 countries were released today by Reporters Without Borders (RSF), along with a dire conclusion:

“There has been a deep and disturbing decline in respect for media freedom at both the global and regional levels.”

The rankings, which have been released annually since 2002, has seen an overall decline in freedom of information from 2013 to 2016, falling 13.6 percent. Every continent’s score has also suffered a drop in this year’s report.

“It is unfortunately clear that many of the world’s leaders are developing a form of paranoia about legitimate journalism,” said RSF secretary-general Christophe Deloire. Read more

Suhakam: Detainees denied medical treatment due to police ‘prejudice’

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The human rights commission said in its report on deaths in detentions released today that two-thirds of detainees with health problems interviewed were denied medical attention, as the police did not believe that they were genuinely ill. — AFP pic

The human rights commission said in its report on deaths in detentions released today that two-thirds of detainees with health problems interviewed were denied medical attention, as the police did not believe that they were genuinely ill. — AFP pic

KUALA LUMPUR, April 20 — Most of the detainees that the National Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) interviewed for a report on deaths in police custody were denied medical treatment, even as the commission found that the deaths were mainly caused by health problems.

The human rights commission said in its report on deaths in detentions released today that two-thirds of detainees with health problems interviewed were denied medical attention, as the police did not believe that they were genuinely ill.

“We found that only 1/3 of the detainees interviewed said they were allowed to undergo medical checkups when they arrive at the lockup, but 2/3 said they were never given any medical attention.

“It is also worth noting that the so-called medical checkup was only verbal and conducted by the investigating officers and not by medical officers,” the commission said in its report released today. Read more

Suhakam: POTA, Sedition Act tweaks regressive

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Suhakam vice-chairman Datuk Dr Khaw Lake Tee speaks to the media at a press conference on current affairs, August 24, 2015. — Picture by Zurairi AR

Suhakam vice-chairman Datuk Dr Khaw Lake Tee speaks to the media at a press conference on current affairs, August 24, 2015. — Picture by Zurairi AR

KUALA LUMPUR, April 20 — The National Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) reiterated today its demand for the abolition of the Sedition Act 1948 on grounds that the law contravened freedom of speech.

The Commission, in its 2015 report, also called the Prevention of Terrorism Act 2015 (POTA) regressive, citing provisions of the law that allow for arbitrary detention without trial which Suhakam said violated one’s constitutional guarantee for a fair hearing.

“The commission in various settings has expressed its views on the use of the Sedition Act. The use of Sedition Act is unjustified as the authorities may seek recourse through other laws or legal remedies.

“The commission since its inception has continually urged and called upon the government to repeal the Sedition Act to give full meaning to citizens’ right to freedom of expression and speech as enshrined under Article 10 of the Federal Constitution,” the report said.

Suhakam said while it acknowledged the positives in the amendments made to the British colonial-inherited law, it maintained its position that the continued use of the Sedition Act was unjustified.

On POTA, Suhakam vice chairman Datuk Dr Khaw Lake Tee described the anti-terrorism law as “a step forward and two steps backwards”.

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