Threat to Malaysian Bar’s independence — Gurdial Singh Nijar

Source: The SunDaily

BY GURDIAL SINGH NIJAR
(Deputy President, HAKAM)

THE former de facto law minister, Datuk Seri Nazri Abdul Aziz (now tourism and culture minister), has unmasked the motive behind the proposed amendments to the Legal Profession Act (LPA): to clip its wings. “If you want to monitor, monitor on what?” he asked. He was amazed that this was taking place in present times.

The Bar, he said, has always been critical even during his term as law minister. “It has not weakened the government in any way. We are still here; we are stronger and to me, let them be,” he said.

This roundly repudiates Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Azalina Othman’s contention – that the proposed amendments to the LPA would only seek to address “bread and butter issues” like legal exams and the ability of all legal practitioners to speak and read English. Ignoring the fact that two government representatives would sit in the Bar Council; and that the whole election system would be revamped such that, according to the Bar Council president, Steven Thiru, it would impede the Bar’s proper functioning.

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Adequate housing dilemma in Malaysia: A human rights perspective — Dr Shahrul Mizan Ismail

Source: The Malay Mail Online

BY DR SHAHRUL MIZAN ISMAIL

SEPTEMBER 18 — The recent proposal by the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Minister to allow housing developers to give loans to potential house buyers has caused quite a stir among the netizens in social media. Not only has it invited comments and criticisms, but also quite a number of new ideas and alternative proposals to resolve the issue. Not many would know however, that the right to adequate housing is actually a recognised universal human rights, classified as the second generation of human rights, which was first embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR), and adopted by the UN General Assembly in 1948.

Rice

Article 25 (1) states: “Everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the health and well-being of himself and of his family, including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services…” The Declaration is not a binding treaty but was signed by all member states of the United Nations. Read more

With child, without job: Pregnant Malaysian women and workplace discrimination

Source: NST Online

DISCRIMINATION: Being pregnant should be the happiest time in a woman’s life. Unfortunately, many have to choose between family and career, because having a bun in the oven could get you passed over for a promotion, sidelined or even fired. While mothers and wives continue to help out with the family finances and fulfil their household duties, most are still getting the short end of the stick, writes Audrey Vijaindren.

FINDING their positions redundant, being denied promotions, being placed on prolonged probation, demotion and even getting sacked — these are among the unenviable positions many Malaysian women have found themselves in, especially when they are with child.

Shocking as it may seem in this day and age, a recent Workplace Discrimination Survey by the Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO) revealed that more than 40 per cent of women polled have experienced job discrimination due to their pregnancy.

The online survey of 222 women polled from across the country revealed that the top five ways employers discriminated against pregnant women were by making their positions redundant, denying them promotions, placing them on prolonged probation, demoting them, and firing them.

WAO launched the survey to promote respect, protection and equal rights for women in the workplace, specifically for pregnant mothers. Read more