SUARAM: “High time M’sia stepped out of dark ages into era of matured politics”

SUARA Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM) has extended its congratulations to Malaysians for their participation in the 15th general election (GE15), saying their “kind understanding, respect for democracy, solidarity and patience” are a “symbol of unity and multicultural harmony”.

“It is high time that Malaysia stepped out of the dark ages and into the era of matured politics, people-centric approach, and good governance,” said SUARAM executive director Sevan Doraisamy.

The human rights organisation further extended its congratulations to all the elected representatives and the coalitions who have “set aside their differences” to collaborate and serve the nation under the leadership of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

“We hope the Reformasi struggle of nearly a quarter of century will be realised by the unity government without any delays, excuses and U-turns as seen previously for the benefit of all citizens of our beloved country,” Sevan remarked.

“SUARAM and civil society has been following and supporting this struggle from the ground since the days of the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the miscarriages of justice that were experienced by many members of the government today.”

As such, SUARAM expressed hopes that the promises made to build a better, safer and more equitable Malaysia will be fulfilled beginning with the following:

  1. Abolishment of draconian laws that enable punishment without going through judicial processes i.e., Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (SOSMA), Prevention of Crime Act 1959 (POCA) and Prevention of Terrorism Act 2015 (POTA);
  2. Replace the IPCC with the IPCMC in its original form, improve police accountability and establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry on torture and deaths in custody;
  3. Under the umbrella of freedom of expression, repeal the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA), amend, and limit the use of the Official Secrets Act 1972 (OSA), repeal section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 (CMA) and the Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 (PPP); and
  4. Identify, recognise, and legitimise the key role of human rights defenders as individuals or groups who act to promote human rights and fundamental freedoms through peaceful means.

“A formidable majority in Parliament is a mandate to be utilised for the good of the people, not an excuse to silence critics,” Sevan noted. – Nov 29, 2022

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