Wednesday, August 01, 2007

Suhakam reiterates call for abolishment of capital punishment on children (Bernama)

Suhakam reiterates call for abolishment of capital punishment on children Print E-mail
Tuesday, 31 July 2007, 05:53pm


KUALA LUMPUR, July 31 (Bernama) --
The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (suhakam) Tuesday reiterated its call to the government to abolish capital punishment for children.

Suhakam chairman Tan Sri Abu Talib Othman said: "We have expressed our view to the government. It's up to the government to reject or accept the recommendations".

He told reporters this after launching the Malaysian Journal On Human Rights at the Suhakam office here Tuesday.

Abu Talib was asked whether Suhakam was still recommending to the government to abolish capital punishment for children following a recent court decision on a 17-year-old-boy who was convicted of murder but freed because there was no provision for punishment for such offence in the Child Act.

The boy was found guilty in 2003 of stabbing to death the teenage daughter of his tutor and sentenced to prison at the pleasure of the king but the Court of Appeal ruled that the sentencing was unconstitutional.

Suhakam Commissioner Dr Chiam Heng Keng said the commission raised the matter of capital punishment again during the meeting of the national council on child protection in Kuantan last week.

"The meeting decided that we should relook into the exisitng Child Act," she said, adding that Malaysia would have to amend the Essential (Security Cases) Regulations 1975 to abolish the imposition of capital punishment on children.

Malaysia ratified the Convention on the Right of the Child (Prohibiting Torture and Regulating Deprivation of Liberty Situations for Children in 1995 but with some reservation on certain articles.

The United Nation has been urging Malaysia to abolish all forms of capital punishment, including caning and other forms of corporal punishment imposed on persons having committed a crime when under the age of 18 and as a disciplinary measure in penal institutions.

Abu Talib also said that Suhakam would organise a Human Rights Day conference on Sept 9.

Admission is free and those interested to attend can contact the Malaysian Human Rights Day 2007 secretariat at 03-26125600 or browse at

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