KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 11 — Putrajaya is mulling introducing a new law that will make the updated form of the National Consultative Council (NCC2) permanent, Tan Sri Joseph Kurup said.
The minister in the Prime Minister’s Department expressed the government’s interest in the idea following calls by prominent leaders, including CIMB Group Chairman Datuk Seri Nazir Razak, The Star daily reported today.
“Yes we intend to but we want it to be more permanent. We don’t want to simply establish a council and then maybe [it dissolves].
“We want it to be an Act of Parliament, which is now in the works…we are aggressively studying this in our discussions with stakeholders and NGOs,” Kurup was quoted as saying.
Nazir, who is brother to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak, recently called for the need for the country to have the second NCC as an updated form of the first council, which his father and second prime minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein began in 1970.
The council was established after the nationwide bloody racial riots of May 13, 1969 and aimed to foster moderation, inter-racial cooperation and national unity.
There has been a similar proposal previously, for the National Unity Consultative Council (NUCC) under the National Harmony Bill, which penalises racial and religious hate crimes with imprisonment and prohibited discrimination.
It was shelved last year after the federal government decided to retain and reinforce the Sedition Act.
When a racial clash occurred at Low Yat Plaza, also last year, Kurup reportedly said the Cabinet will table the NUCC, but it never took off until today.
Kurup has said that several recommendations have been made under the National Unity Blueprint, which among others called for the formation of a mediation and conflict resolution centre.