Article 13(2) of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948 states:
“13(2). Everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and to return to his country.”
It is most deplorable that in the era of globalisation, liberalisation and information and communications technology (ICT), the Barisan Nasional government has resorted to more and more authoritarian measures which are hallmarks of totalitarian regimes instead of partaking in the trend of greater democratisation in the country.
The Government should make public a full list of the 78 persons banned from travelling overseas for allegedly “tarnishing the image” of the Barisan Nasional government, giving the reasons why the ban had been imposed on each of them.
This will be a great test of Suhakam’s credibility and it should
not wait for any report to be lodged but act on its own volition, as permitted
under Section 12(1) of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia Act 1999,
“12(1) The Commission may, on its own motion or on a complaint made to it by an aggrieved person or group of persons or a person acting on behalf of an aggrieved person or a group of persons, inquire into an allegation of the infringement of the human rights of such person or group of person.”
DAP urges Suhakam Chairman, Tan Sri Musa Hitam, to give personal attention to this grave human rights violations and initiate without delay investigations into the outrageous government ban on 78 Malaysians from travelling overseas.