Abu Talib should announce the human rights
vision and policy directions of
Suhakam in the next two years after the first Suhakam working meeting tomorrow
by Lim Kit Siang
(Petaling Jaya, Sunday): The new Suhakam Chairman, Tan Sri Abu Talib
Othman should announce the human rights vision and policy directions of Suhakam
in the next two years after the first Suhakam working meeting tomorrow.
Among the issues Abu Talib must clarify are
seven matters which are important
tests of the credibility, legitimacy and integrity of the second-term Suhakam,
- Whether Suhakam would reaffirm its statement of 11th
April 2001 that the Internal Security Act (ISA) is a violation of fundamental
human rights and call for the immediate release of the six reformasi activists, Mohamad
Ezam Mohamad Nor, Hishamuddin Rais, Chua Tian Chang, Saari Sungib, Badrulamin
Bahron under the ISA;
- Whether the Complaints and Inquiries Working Group would hold its
first public inquiry into the ISA detention of the six reformasi activists as
decided by the first-term Suhakam last month.
- Whether the second-term Suhakam is prepared to take a bold and
correct decision, which would go a long way to restore the shattered public
confidence in the second-term Suhakam, by dealing with the biggest failure of
the first-term Suhakam and hold a public inquiry into the Kampong Medan racial
attacks in March last year which claimed six lives and injured some hundred
- Whether Suhakam will hold
an inquiry into the high-handed police
actions, arrests and brutalities against
workers at the peaceful May Day
gathering at the Kuala Lumpur City
- Whether Suhakam is prepared to set up a new Working Group on Press
Freedom to arrest the alarming erosion of the rights to freedom of speech,
expression and the press particularly in the past year, to receive and
investigate complaints by journalists as well as Malaysians on violations of
press freedom as well as freedom of speech and expression.
- What is the status of the Suhakam inquiry into the Sarawak Native
Customary Rights (NCR) land controversy led by Datuk Dr.
Salleh Mohd Nor, which was to be ready to be made public in February this year and whether the report was being watered down because of
strong objections from the Sarawak state government
resulting in the axing of Salleh from the new Suhakam appointments.
- What is the outcome of Suhakam investigations into complaints of
alleged mismanagement of campus elections by the Universiti Teknologi Malaysia
in November last year and what action Suhakam has taken to protect the
student-complainants from victimization of the UTM authorities.
*Lim Kit Siang - DAP National Chairman