Constitutional solutions must be at forefront of all human rights concerns, Centhra urges

Source: The Malay Mail Online

The Centre for Human Rights Research and Advocacy (Centhra) has urged the newly appointed members of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) to have due regard for the provisions stipulated in the Federal Constitution in exercising their functions, particularly in the human rights areas concerning freedom of religion and equality, as well as freedom of speech, assembly and association.

Centhra also drew their attention to Section 4(4) of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia Act 1999 (Act 597), which states that “they shall have regard to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) insofar as the same does not contradict the Federal Constitution”.

“This would mean that efforts to further human rights based on the UDHR in Malaysia cannot go against national principles stipulated by our apex law,” Centhra Chief Executive Azril Mohd Amin said in a statement yesterday.

On Tuesday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced the appointment of former diplomat Tan Sri Razali Ismail as Suhakam chairman and Professor Datuk Dr Aishah Bidin, Francis Johen anak Adam, Datuk Mah Weng Kwai, Datuk Godfrey Gregory Joitol, Dr Nik Salida Suhaila Nik Salleh, Jerald Joseph and Datuk Lok Yim Pheng as its new members for the 2016-2019 period. Read more

Suhakam risks downgrade after Putrajaya shuns proposals to strengthen it

Source: The Malaysian Insider

Suhakam vice-chairman Datuk Dr Khaw Lake Tee says she did not receive a favourable response in her meeting with the Attorney-General, police and PM’s Department legal representative over the expansion of the human rights commission’s role. – The Malaysian Insider pic, August 24, 2015.

The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia’s (Suhakam) attempt to give itself more bite has hit a roadblock, with Putrajaya reacting “very unfavourably” to its proposals to amend the law that governed it.

This could see Suhakam risk a potential downgrade of its international accreditation, its vice-chairman Datuk Dr Khaw Lake Tee said today.

Khaw said Suhakam had submitted nine recommendations to Putrajaya to strengthen the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia Act which was last amended in 2009. Read more