Putrajaya must admit there are stunted kids for problem to be resolved, says economist

Source: The Malaysian Insight

STUNTED Malaysian children is a real problem that Putrajaya must admit rather than ignore, said an economist whose recent survey had uncovered a high number of malnourished children in low-cost housing projects..

DM Analytics managing director and chief economist Muhammed Abdul Khalid said Putrajaya needed to acknowledge the problem if it was to be resolved.

“We have a problem with the poor. If we are not going to acknowledge it, we are not going to solve it,” he said at a forum organised by Buku Jalanan today.

He said it was a shame that even the most highly placed leaders were turning a blind eye on the growing epidemic. Read more

Unicef Malaysia: Child marriages rob boys, girls of their dignity

Source: The Star Online

PETALING JAYA: Child marriages rob boys and girls of their rights and dignity, says Unicef Malaysia.

“Whether it happens to a girl or a boy, child marriage robs children of their childhood, their rights and their dignity.

“Child marriage, which frequently inhibits a child’s basic rights to health, education and protection from harm, is condemned in international conventions, including the Convention on the Rights of the Child, which Malaysia acceded to 21 years ago,” it said in a statement on Tuesday.

Unicef said young brides are often isolated, removed from immediate families, taken out of school and denied interaction with their peers and communities, adding that this puts girls at risk of early and unwanted pregnancies, posing life-threatening consequences.

“Child marriage, as so rightly put by the Minister of Women, Family and Community Development Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim a couple of weeks ago, is a serious violation of human rights that impacts all aspects of a child’s life, especially girls,” said Unicef.

Read more

Undang-undang bakal benarkan sesiapa saja lapor ibu bapa cuai

Sumber: The Malaysian Insider

Pindaan Akta Kanak-Kanak akan turut menghukum ibu bapa dan penjaga yang didapati membiarkan anak mereka tanpa pengawasan sehingga menyebabkan kemalangan dan kematian. – Gambar fail The Malaysian Insider, 18 Januari, 2016.

Pindaan Akta Kanak-Kanak 2001 bakal membenarkan mana-mana pihak melaporkan ibu bapa atau penjaga yang cuai sehingga menyebabkan kecederaan fizikal, emosi dan seksual kanak-kanak jagaan mereka, kata Kementerian Pembangunan Wanita, Keluarga dan Masyarakat hari ini.

Menurut penasihat undang-undangnya Zahida Zakaria, perkara itu tertakluk dalam Rang Undang-undang Kanak-kanak (Pindaan) 2015 yang bertujuan mendidik ibu bapa supaya bertanggungjawab dalam pengawasan anak-anak mereka.

Zahida merujuk perkara itu kepada beberapa kes kecuaian ibu bapa seperti meninggalkan anak di dalam kereta berseorangan, meninggalkan anak tanpa keperluan asas yang mencukupi di rumah dan membiarkan anak bermain di pusat membeli-belah tanpa jagaan sehingga menyebabkan kematian.

“Kita nak fokus kepada ibu bapa yang cuai, sebab bukannya kita nak menghukum mereka tapi kita nak mendidik ibu bapa berkenaan yang mereka patut lebih bertanggungjawab.

“Tidak boleh cuai terhadap anak mereka,” katanya kepada The Malaysian Insider selepas taklimat media di Institut Sosial Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur hari ini. Read more

Child Act amendments to comply with global rights convention, ministry says

Source: The Malay Mail Online

KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 18 — The proposed amendments to the Child Act 2001 are to observe the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Children (CRC) that Malaysia signed in 1995, according to the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry.

Policy Division Secretary Dr Waitchalla V Suppiah said the Child Act (Amendment) Bill 2015, which was tabled during the last Parliamentary sitting, would see more child participation in the ministry’s policy making, punishments that focus more on community service, and the reduction of institutionalisation of minors.

“Best interest of the child is already incorporated.  Survivability as well as development is also incorporated. So if you look at all the principles within the CRC, it is all incorporated within our proposed amendments,” she told reporters here at the Social Institute of Malaysia.

“That is one of the reasons why we are amending the act, to take into account the CRC.”

The existing Act was criticised by civil society for lacking in compliance to the CRC especially last year, which marked twenty years of Malaysia being a signatory. Read more

Child welfare trumps religion in custody battle, Perlis Fatwa council says in new edict

Source: The Malay Mail Online

Perlis mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin said the committee found it unfair to determine the winner of a child custody battle based solely on which parent is Muslim as the overall welfare and interests of the child were more important. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, July 27 — In a landmark decision, the Perlis Fatwa Committee has issued an edict stating that a child’s welfare takes priority over religion in custody battles involving Muslim convert and non-Muslim parents.

The Star reported today that state mufti Datuk Dr Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin said the committee found it unfair to determine the winner of a child custody battle based solely on which parent is Muslim as the overall welfare and interests of the child were more important.

“The common case these days is that both parents are non-Muslims, and then one of them converts to Islam. If going by the Shariah court, then custody is unquestionably given to the Muslim parent.

“This is actually not right, as there is no basis for that sort of ruling, whether in the Quran or hadith. Read more