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Accusing UMNO Senators invited to Parliamentary Roundtable on Police Squatgate Scandal on Tuesday on police respect for the dignity and  human rights of detainees in custody



Media Statement

by Lim Kit Siang  

, Saturday):  Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak must be commended in maintaining that the incident involving a woman detainee who was ordered to do ear squats in the nude in a locker room of the Petaling Jaya police station was a human rights and not a racial issue.

He said in Pekan yesterday: "This is not a racial issue as from the start, we had expressed our concern over the issue. Although the detainee is a Malaysian citizen, the government still feels that whatever that can be regarded as insulting a detainee, is not appropriate, unless it is guided by laws and regulations."

It is most regrettable and shameful that not a single one of the  UMNO Senators who had been making wild attacks  on DAP  MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok and me over the issue in the last few days, had expressed any condemnation, outrage or even concern over the humiliation, indignity and human rights violation suffered by the Malay woman – as if public indignation over the indiscriminate use of the naked ear-squat drill is fully acceptable if it had been  applied on a Chinese national but not if the victim is a local Malay woman or Malaysian citizen.

We reject the underlying assumption that the human rights of Malaysian citizens, whether Malay, Chinese, Indian, Kadazan or Iban, can be trampled upon with impunity but not foreign nationals.

At one time, one of the accusing woman UMNO Senators was deemed as involved in activities detrimental to law and order. I want to ask her whether she would agree that it would be perfectly acceptable for her to be stripped naked and made to do ten ear-squats if she had been arrested at the time and put in a police lock-up?

Are these UMNO Senators prepared to join all Parliamentarians, regardless of party, and NGOs  on a common platform to demand an end to all police abuses and violations of the human rights of police detainees, irrespective of gender, race or nationality?

I am convening a Parliamentary Roundtable on Tuesday on Police Squatgate Scandal on police respect for the  dignity and  human rights of detainees in custody, which can serve as reference  to the Dzaiddin Commission of Inquiry in preparing its report after its four days of public hearing.

The Parliamentary Roundtable is open to all political parties, human rights organizations (including Suhakam), women organizations, NGOs and Malaysians concerned about police abuses and human rights violations of detainees in custody.

In view of the shortness of time,  this announcement will serve as an open  invitation to all to  the Parliamentary Roundtable in Parliament on Tuesday (20th December) at 10.30 am.  All who are interested in attending should  contact Lau Weng San,  special assistant to the Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Tel: 016-3231563 or any DAP Member of Parliament  for confirmation.

I am specificially  inviting the Home Affairs Minister, Datuk Seri Azmi Khalid and the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz to the Parliamentary Roundtable on Tuesday.

Najib said in Pekan yesterday that “in the initial stage, both he and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi thought that the woman detainee was a China national” until her identity was revealed on Tuesday’s Commission of Inquiry hearing.

I find it completely mind-boggling and unbelievable that information about the nationality of the woman victim in the police naked ear-squat videoclip scandal should be withheld from the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister for 20 days   from November 24 to December 13, as the police knew the nationality of the woman victim even before Teresa Kok showed the videoclip to Ministers and MPs in Parliament on November 24!

Heads must roll  for the grand police deception in refusing to disclose to the highest authorities in government, the Prime Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, about the nationality of the woman victim, to the ridiculous extent that  Home Affairs Minister  Datuk  Azmi Khalid was still calling on the woman victim to come forward to co-operate with the authorities when visiting China on 6th December, even promising to give her the necessary immigration clearance to stay in the country even if she had  illegal status, as she is needed to give evidence!

If Deputy Internal Security Minister, Datuk Seri Noh Omar, is party to this grand deception of the Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister and Home Affairs Minister, failing to disclose to them this vital information at the first available opportunity, then Noh Omar should be sacked summarily for gross dereliction of duty and the colossal failure to protect the best national  interests under the circumstances.


*  Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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