When will I be able to travel again, asks Zunar

Source: Free Malaysia Today

KUALA LUMPUR: Political cartoonist Zunar wants to know when the travel ban imposed on him will be lifted, saying he is still in the dark over why it was enforced to begin with.

He said the ban established by the Immigration Department had affected his source of income as he was paid to speak at events outside Malaysia.

“Most of my work is overseas. I cannot conduct my exhibitions here because I would be arrested, and cannot sell my books as they are banned,” he said when making a complaint at the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) here.

Zunar, whose real name is Zulkiflee SM Anwar Haque, said he wanted Suhakam to intervene in the matter.

He said the government had infringed his rights as he was not informed why he was barred from travelling. Read more

Putrajaya must answer questions on Wang Kelian death camps, says human rights society

Source: The Malaysian Insight

An armed police officer stands guard at an abandoned camp and mass graves in Wang Kelian, Perlis, in 2015, following the discovery of 139 graves in 28 detention camps for human trafficking victims. – EPA pic.

THE National Human Rights Society (Hakam) has demanded that Putrajaya answer the questions raised in a recent investigative report on human trafficking death camps that were discovered in the jungles of Wang Kelian, Perlis in 2015.

In a statement today, Hakam president Ambiga Sreenevasan praised the “courageous” journalists who had disclosed a possible cover-up by the authorities, in particular, the police.

“The reports state that there are corrupt public officials involved, indicating that organised crime continued to take place over an extensive time-frame that could not have been done without the aid of public officials,” she said.

Ambiga said Hakam demanded to know why the initial discovery of the death camps were kept secret and who had ordered that the crime scene be sanitised and destroyed. She also asked why the Perlis police, who knew of the existence of the camps, were not held accountable for turning a blind eye. Read more

LFL calls for RCI on mass graves after NST report of police cover-ups

Source: FMT News

PETALING JAYA: The government must form a Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) following a report by the New Straits Times (NST) today claiming massive cover-ups by police on the discovery of mass graves in Wang Kelian, Perlis, two years ago, rights lawyers say.

“This extensive NST report confirms the long-held suspicion of local authorities’ collusion, and most damning of all, the subsequent whitewash investigation and perfunctory prosecution of a few foreigners,” Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) said in a statement.

“In light of the exposé, serious questions must be asked as to why there was such an extensive cover-up and who the authorities were trying to protect.”

NST today reported that a two-year investigation by its team of journalists revealed that authorities had delayed the announcement of the discovery of the mass graves by some four months. Read more

After new Wang Kelian exposé, group demands inquiry on alleged cover-up

Source: The Malay Mail Online

A policeman watches over abandoned human trafficking camp in the jungle close the Thailand border at Bukit Wang Kelian in northern Malaysia May 26, 2015. — Reuters pic

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 20 — The federal government must explain suggestions of collusion between law enforcement and the people-smuggling rings behind the mass graves in Wang Kelian, Perlis, said the National Human Right Society (Hakam).

Citing a New Straits Times special report today based on the discovery first reported by Malay Mail in 2015, Hakam chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan said the claims of complicity, incompetence, and a possible cover-up merited a formal investigation by the Human Rights Commission (Suhakam).

“After the Malay Mail exposé in 2015, Hakam and the Malaysian Bar each submitted a memorandum to Suhakam urging that an independent inquiry be conducted into the discovery of the death camps, allegations of human trafficking, torture and mass killings.

“However, we were made to understand that Suhakam’s budget was dramatically reduced in 2015 and 2016, which made it difficult for them to employ resources to initiate an inquiry,” she said in a statement.

She also demanded that the federal government address the insinuations of impropriety and irregularity contained in the NST’s report, saying it must at least explain why the discovery of the death camps were not publicised sooner. Read more

Hakam takes gov’t to task over daily’s Wang Kelian exposé

Source: Malaysiakini

HAKAM President Ambiga Sreenevasan — Pic by Zikri Kamalrulzaman

The National Human Rights Society (Hakam) has called for the government to answer questions posed by a local daily on the alleged cover-up of human trafficking activities in the Wang Kelian camp in Perlis.

In a statement released today, Hakam president Ambiga Sreenevasan raised a few points that the government must answer to put the matter to rest.

“Why had the initial discovery of these death camps been kept a secret? Who gave the orders to sanitise and destroy the crime scene, and why?

“Why were the Perlis police, who knew the existence of these jungle camps, not held accountable for ignoring these victims?” she asked. Read more

STATEMENT: On NST’s Exclusive Report on Death Camps

STATEMENT DATED 20 Dec 2017pdf

NST’S EXCLUSIVE REPORT ON DEATH CAMPS

NST’s exclusive report on the secrets of Wang Kelian carried out by a courageous special team over two years is truly worthy of credit. Just as is The Malay Mail team who first broke the story on Wang Kelian. This is investigative journalism at its best because it serves the truth.

The NST report discloses the mismanagement and a possible cover-up by the authorities, in particular, the police over the investigation in respect of the discovery of human trafficking death camps. The NST report sheds light on the complicity or at the very least negligence if not incompetence of police officials. The reports states that there are corrupt public officials involved, indicating that organised crime continued to take place over an extensive time-frame that could not have been done without the aid of public officials. Read more

What a Najib win could mean for Malaysia

Source: Free Malaysia Today

Free Malaysia Today

KUALA LUMPUR: The rule of the Umno-led Barisan Nasional looks set to be extended for many years to come if the Umno-PAS alignment works, according to an editorial in the East Asia Forum.

However, this portends ill for the non-Malay minorities and liberal Muslims, as Umno, increasingly dependent on PAS, dances to the latter’s tunes, it says.

The editorial of the East Asia Forum, which is based in the Australian National University’s Crawford School of Public Policy, says Najib Razak will almost certainly survive the 1MDB scandal unscathed if Umno’s understanding with PAS holds and its manoeuvring to drive a wedge between the opposition parties continues to succeed.

“Decades of institutional degeneration under Umno rule, and the concentration of power in the office of the prime minister, has seen Najib able to swat away any domestic attempts to hold him to account for his role in the 1MDB affair. The unfortunate importance of identity politics in shaping voter behaviour also helps insulate him from much of the electoral backlash.”  Read more

Labuan’s poor economy due to waste, rampant corruption, says PKR

Source: Free Malaysia Today

Free Malaysia Today

Labuan PKR chief Simsudin Sidek says official figures on poverty do not reflect real situation on ground.

KOTA KINABALU: The expanding rich-poor gap among the people in Labuan is due to the current government’s system that encourages resource leakage, wastage, corruption and unbridled cronyism, claims PKR.

Labuan PKR chief Simsudin Sidek said the situation worsened when the government decided to implement the goods and services tax (GST) which caused prices of consumer goods to rise suddenly.

Simsudin said it was maddening that the government continued to claim that the country was almost free of poverty when in Sabah, Sarawak and Labuan, the poverty rate was still high.

In truth, he said, the government had still failed to address inequality and poverty in these states.

He said Sabahans, Sarawakians and Labuanites were marginalised although the nation had rapidly developed and, by right, every citizen should be able to enjoy the country’s wealth.  Read more

Standing behind academic freedom — Sisters in Islam

Source: The Malay Mail Online

BY SISTERS IN ISLAM

DECEMBER 20 — Sisters in Islam stands in full support of the constitutional expert and renowned academic, Professor Shad Saleem Faruqi and demands the investigation against him under section 504 of the Penal Code be stopped immediately.

As an academic whose interest and expertise lies in Constitutional matters and Islamic policies, Professor Shad acted within his professional boundaries when he commented on religious radicalism in his recent article in The Star.

Section 504 of the Penal Code states that “any act that intentionally insults or intending to cause provocation that causes a break of public peace”, is liable to imprisonment for terms up to two years, fined or both. Hence, SIS strongly condemns this blatant abuse of power in an attempt to subdue freedom of expression. Read more

After husband shot by cops, widow urges independent probe

Source: The Malay Mail Online 

PERAK 20-12-2017.An emotional R.Vaijentimala pleaded for justice, as Marimuthu’s shooting had placed her nine-month old daughter and herself in a desperate situation. MALAY MAIL/Farhan Najib

IPOH, Dec 20 — The widow of a man shot by Perak police in Air Kuning, Tapah last May urged today for an independent investigation into the shooting that killed her 41-year-old husband.

R. Vaijentimala, 41, wanted a murder investigation launched into what she believed to be the wrongful shooting of her husband M. Marimuthu on May 24 2017.

To this end, she lodged a police report at the Ipoh police district headquarters earlier today, accompanied by her family and her lawyers N.Surendran and Latheefa Koya.

Surendran said that the family’s questions were based around the trajectory of the bullets which entered Marimuthu’s body.

He claimed the official post-mortem report contradicted Perak police chief Datuk Hasnan Hassan’s account of the shooting.

“Hasnan was quoted in the press saying that the suspect exited his car and fired at police, who then retaliated by shooting him twice in the chest,” he told reporters outside police headquarters.

“However, the post mortem report states that one of the bullets entered his body at a downward 40 degrees angle.”  Read more