DAP threatens to haul deputy minister before rights committee over child rape remarks
M. Kula Segaran (DAP-Ipoh Barat) (pic) said Wan Junaidi's remarks about non-Malays being "less sensitive" about statutory rape is unbecoming of a person holding a high political position, as well as being the former deputy speaker and a lawyer.
In describing the statement as "shocking, insensitive and unacceptable", Kula Segaran said it had not only offended the non-Malays, but was tantamount to misleading the Parliament.
"He should not try to find excuses or defend what is indefensible for his totally unacceptable answer.
"There can be no justification for his offensive and unsubstantiated answer. The only option for him is to retract his answer and apologise," he said at a press conference at the Parliament lobby today.
He also asked whether the prime minister and home minister concurred with Wan Junaidi's views.
Wan Junaidi sparked a furore when he said in reply to a question in Parliament yesterday that child rape was more common among Malays because non-Malays were less sensitive and under-report such cases.
He said the majority of Muslim parents were unable to accept the idea of sex before marriage.
"There are more reports involving Malays compared with other races because Muslims can't accept a child out of wedlock, pre-marital sex, and because these acts are wrong by Islamic law (zina)," Wan Junaidi had said during question time.
In supporting his claims, he said statistics showed that 80%, or 1,147, of the 1,424 of statutory rape cases reported last year involved Malays.
In comparison, Chinese accounted for 4.3% (62 cases), Indians 2% (32), while other races, about 13% (183).
Statutory rape covers girls aged below 16, regardless of whether it involved consensual sex and whether the accused was an adult or minor.
Wan Junaidi had said last year’s statistics was consistent with the numbers for 2012, where out of the 1,243 underage rape victims, Malays accounted for 80%, Chinese 5%, Indians 3%, while other races accounted for 12%.
Wan Junaidi's remarks hit a raw nerve among netizens and civil society, who rebuked him for being insensitive.
In response he denied claims that he was being racist over the child rape issue.
"How can I be a racist when my wife is Chinese and I have many relatives who are non-Muslims or Malays," he said, when asked to clarify his remarks.
He said the Malays tend to lodge reports due to their religious and cultural sensitivities on statutory rape, even if was a consensual act.
"They have no other solution but to lodge police reports, even when they realise that consensual sex with a minor was a statutory sexual offence.” – March 20, 2014.