Thursday, June 16, 2016

There must be zero tolerance and compromise on the UTM‘s lecturer’s derogatory remarks against Hinduism and Sikhism

Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, MP for Ipoh Barat and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 17th June, 2016

There must be zero tolerance and compromise on the UTM‘s lecturer’s derogatory remarks against Hinduism and Sikhism

Although the Vice Chancellor of UTM (Universiti Teknologi Malaysia), Prof Dr Wahid Omar took the right and necessary step to express the university’s utmost regret and deep remorse for the lack of sensitivity on the part of their lecturers teaching the Titas (Tamadun Islam Tamadun Asia – Asian and Islamic Civilisation) subject, it must be stressed that this will not be sufficient for the act committed by the lecturer.

If the lecturer has made a factual error, then he is simply not qualified to teach and his employment with the university should be terminated.
If he has ill intent and has purposely deviated from the course‘s stated objective of promoting national harmony, then all the more reason that his service should be terminated.

There must be zero tolerance on such unprofessional insensitive, provocative and insulting act happening at a university where students are to acquire knowledge, skills and learn about truths.

Hence, there must be zero compromise on such an act and whoever was involved must face the sack by the university.

The Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib has previously called on Malaysians to unite against extremism.

The Education Ministry should therefore come out with a statement denouncing such act to show to Malaysians that the government views seriously such an act that has hurt the feelings of the Hindu and Sikh community.

Unless tough action is taken against the lecturer involved, I will pursue the issue in the coming parliamentary meeting.

There have been police reports lodged against the act and I hope the Police will also investigate if the act is a bigger issue tha!t Malaysians should worry, that is, the presence of religious extremists in our universities.

Monday, June 13, 2016

Malaysia Kini news :- ‘Umno more complicit on hudud than DAP’

DAP national vice-chair M Kulasegaran contended that Umno was more complicit on hudud than that DAP’s dalliance with PAS had encouraged the latter’s obduracy on the Islamic penal code.

The Ipoh Barat MP said this in rebutting MIC president S Subramaniam’s argument that DAP could not absolve itself of responsibility for the tabling of PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang’s bill on hudud in Parliament on May 26.

Subramaniam had deployed this argument while campaigning in the Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar by-elections, where he said that DAP had all along known of PAS’s true nature and chose to be irresponsibly negligent on the threat.

“There’s nothing wrong is believing in a progressive mind-set and trusting to its beneficial effects over time and among peoples,” said Kulasegaran in rebuttal.

“We knew PAS had its progressives and its conservatives. What grave fault can there be in trusting to the triumph of religious moderation over literalism, progress over obscurantism?” argued the federal legislator.

He said that Subramaniam’s tarring of Amanah with the same brush as PAS was as blind as his attribution of willfulness to DAP’s dalliance with PAS in the Pakatan Rakyat phase of opposition politics.

“Amanah would not have been formed if there were no political differences between the progressives and the conservatives of the former PAS,” observed Kula.

“That DAP is now in collaboration with Amanah is a continuation of our belief in the hope of moderation’s eventual triumph over religious literalism,” he said.

“In the end, this is a more sustainable and credible stance than MIC’s persistence with an Umno that plays fast and loose with fundamental tenets of our constitution,” he commented.

“DAP does not play fast and loose on fundamentals. We persuade, cajole and, then, when it is no go, we go separate ways.

“That’s what we have done with PAS, but MIC leaves itself hostage to Umno’s view of where its survival lies. That's the big difference between us,” maintained Kula.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Why has MIC not chosen to quit BN as a protest against Umno’s decision to allow fast tracking of Hadi Awang’s Private Member’s Bill ?

Press Statement By M Kula Segaran, MP for Ipoh Barat and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 12th June, 2016

Why has MIC not chosen to quit BN as a protest against Umno’s decision to allow fast tracking of Hadi Awang’s Private Member’s Bill ?

MIC president Datuk Subramaniam has called on Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar voters to reject Pas and Amanah candidates in the coming by-elections due to both parties championing “extremist religious policies”.

He also whacked the DAP, saying that we knew the real nature of PAS and yet, decided to play along with this dangerous game, purely for selfish political expediency.

I am surprised that Datuk Subramaniam cannot see the difference between Pas and Amanah. If they are both the same, why did Amanah leaders leave Pas?

It is expected of Subramaniam to have to whack the opposition when campaigning for the BN candidates, but he should be more truthful with what he said. He should not confuse or mislead the people with baseless remarks and attacks.

Before embarking on attacks against Amanah and the DAP , Subramaniam should first answer the following two questions:

1. Was it not Umno that allowed the fast tracking of Hadi Awang’s private member’s Bill in Parliament?

2. As the Bill, if passed , will pave the way for hudud implementation, why has MIC not chosen to quit BN as a protest against Umno’s decision to allow fast tracking of the bill?

If MIC is serious about opposing hudud as it claims, it should take the principled stand of quitting BN immediately. But it has chosen to stay on in the Cabinet and the BN coalition.

Yet MIC president could be so hypocritical to call on the people to support BN when it was Umno the BN’s big brother that has agreed to help Pas to realise its agenda of hudud implementation.

It is a fact that DAP has worked with Pas, but it was never for hudud implementation.

In fact, DAP has broken up with Pas twice over the issue of Pas’s Islamic state and hudud agenda. This is proof that we are a principled party that means what we say, unlike MIC.

In the Selangor government where Pas is represented, hudud is not and will not be an agenda. So Subramaniam should stop his baseless attacks against the DAP.

Monday, June 6, 2016

MalaysiaKini news : ‘Najib’s removal will have domino effect’

DAP national vice-chair M Kulasegaran, while canvassing signatures for the Citizens’ Declaration in Ipoh over the weekend, said it was incorrect to view the document as focused on the removal of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak without emphasis on institutional reform.

Campaigning for signatories to the declaration in thoroughfares in the city, Kulasegaran said the drive to remove the PM for gross negligence in financial and political matters was not personality-focused but issue-driven.

“True, the document urges the removal of the PM but seeing it as a move to replace one bad leader with another from the same mould is oversimplification,” remarked the MP for Ipoh Barat.

“Najib’s removal will have a domino effect because those complicit in his misdeeds or in the cover-up will have to yield to popular pressure to go once the head honcho goes,” opined the lawyer-legislator.

Citing another instance which he said reflected an identical narrowness of outlook, Kulasegaran said PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang’s criticism of DAP as having interfered in Islamic matters by its opposition to hudud is “tunnel-visioned”.

“He doesn’t stop to consider that the measure he proposes has grave implications for the principles and postulates enshrined in the Federal Constitution,” he remarked. “Our concern is with these implications. DAP legislators would remiss in their parliamentary duty if they did not take heed of them.

“For the top leader of a major political party to say that the DAP is interfering in Islam by opposing hudud is to mistake the forest for the trees,” asserted M Kula.

He said the DAP has to comment on Hadi’s Bill on hudud by way of pointing out what the thrust of the bill bodes for sacred tenets of civil society such as equality of citizens before the law, gender equality and avoidance of cruel and unjust punishments.

“That Hadi doesn’t seem to understand the implications of his bill for such principles and postulates of democratic and civil society is astonishing,” commented Kulasegaran.

M. Kula's media statement : Instead of accusing the DAP of interfering in matters related to Islam, Hadi Awang should himself understand the spirit and principles of the Federal Constitution and also accept the fact that Malaysia is a multi racial and multi religious nation

Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, MP for Ipoh Barat and DAP National Vice Chairman in Ipoh on 6th, June, 2016

Instead of accusing the DAP of interfering in matters related to Islam, Hadi Awang should himself understand the spirit and principles of the Federal Constitution and also accept the fact that Malaysia is a multi racial and multi religious nation
It was reported that PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang had yesterday, at a tea session with Chinese voters at Kuala Kangsar , accused the DAP of having interfered in matters relating to Islam.

He also said that while PAS supported good policies by the Government and only objected to what it believed were bad ones, DAP would oppose everything.

Hadi’s accusation clearly referred to the long standing disagreement and spat that DAP has with Pas on the issue of hudud implementation

Hadi’s accusation that DAP has interfered in matters of Islam is inaccurate and baseless as our opposition cannot be viewed as such.

DAP is not anti Islam or any religion. We accept and respect that Islam is the official religion of the federation.

Whilst we respect Islam and the position of hudud in Islam, our consistent position is that implementation of hudud laws is against the Federal Constitution and not suitable in a plural society like Malaysia.

Instead of accusing the DAP of interfering in matters related to Islam, Hadi Awang should himself understand the spirit and principles of the Federal Constitution and also accept the fact that Malaysia is a multi racial and multi religious nation.

Hadi must not ignore the fact that there have also been voices of objections from Muslim Malaysians on hudud implementation.

In fact, Hadi should explain why his plot with Umno to have his Private Member’s Bill to enhance Syariah system prioritized in Parliament was not a ploy to help Umno divert Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar voters’ attention from the 1 MDB scandals.

It is also wrong for PAS to accuse DAP as a party that will oppose everything.

It is PAS ‘s choice that it now wants to play a new style of politics , of being friendly to BN, of not making anti corruption its main political agenda though the people are still perplexed by PAS’s change of direction.

But it should not try to camouflage or justify its new change by attacking the DAP of opposing every government policy.
Could Hadi mention an example of a good policy which he thinks that DAP should support but has failed to do so?

While PAS is not keen to pursue the 1 MDB issue, DAP has been and will continue to make the Prime Minister and the BN government account for this mega scandal.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

PGA Statement: MPs from Asia-Pacific Region commit to Justice and Accountability for Victims of Gender-Based Crimes

Jakarta/ New York / The Hague, 27 May 2016 - On 26 May 2016, the Committee for Inter-parliamentary Cooperation of the Indonesian House of Representatives hosted a Seminar in collaboration with Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA). Parliamentarians from Indonesia, Malaysia, Maldives and the Philippines took a strong stance on the principle that no one shall be denied justice based on their gender or any other categories.

Offering her welcoming remarks to the momentous Seminar, Hon. Dr. Nurhayati Ali Assegaf, MP (Indonesia), Chairperson of Committee on Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation, Member of Commission I on Security and Defense, Member of PGA, set the tone by reflecting upon the need for gender mainstreaming in all aspects of justice, which has to go beyond borders and include international treaties. She promised a firm commitment of the committee on parliamentary Cooperation towards strengthening women parliamentarians and informed that international issues such as sexual and gender based violence affect also at national level. The Seminar counted on the prominent leadership by the Co-Chairs Hon. Mr. Tantowi Yahya, MP (Indonesia), Vice Chairperson of Committee on Inter-Parliamentary Cooperation and Hon. M. Azis Syamsuddin, SE, SH, MAF, MH, MP (Indonesia), Member of Commission III on Legal affairs and laws, human rights and security, Member of PGA.

The distinguished audience benefitted from the valuable contributions from MPs from the region including Hon. Kula Segaran, MP (Malaysia), Deputy Convener of the PGA International Law and Human Rights Programme, who shed some light on the difficulty for countries in the Asia-Pacific region to tackle gender-related crimes although an absolute necessity in particular within International Law:

Many of us are uncomfortable to speak about these issues. In times of conflict, other crimes committed such as murder, torture, are being addressed. However, the fact that rape is being used as a weapon of war to eliminate societies is often being undermined. An important and timely tool to address those crimes is the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court. It contains various provisions designed to ensure the effective investigation and prosecution of sexual and gender-based crimes. Malaysia is therefore very close to ratifying the Rome Statute of the ICC and we are looking forwards to hereby joining our colleagues from Maldives and Philippines as ICC Member States. Indonesia should join the club!”

Ms. Shamila Batohi, Senior Legal Advisor of the ICC-OTP introduced the Policy Paper of the Office of the Prosecutor of the ICC on Sexual and Gender-based Crimes and explained how the Rome Statute has contributed to setting the international precedent of the illegality of sexual and gender-based violence.

High-level panelists such as Dra. Eva Kusuma Sundari, MA, MDE, MP (Indonesia),PGA Member, Ms. Roichatul Aswidah, Commissioner and Head of Research, National Human Rights Commission of Indonesia (KOMNAS HAM) and Dr. Indraswari, Commissioner of Komnas Perempuan (National Commission on Violence Against Women) explained the importance of streamlining Gender Justice in all national instruments and highlighted the efforts Indonesia has already made in this direction, including important policies such as the National Human Rights Action Plan.

The Philippines’ example is particularly fitting to illustrate the advantages of ratifying the Rome Statute to help advance gender justice. Hon. Francisco Ashley Acedillo, MP(Philippines), Member of PGA, laid an emphasis on the principle of complementarity under which the ICC can only intervene when States are unable or unwilling to prosecute crimes of international concern including those with a sexual and gender component as they are used as a tool of war:

The ICC complements domestic tribunals that also contribute to deter and punish these crimes. In addition, the independent judicial process offered by the ICC seeks to ensure that victims are recognized and that defendants receive the highest standards of due process by the law (…). To ensure that no individual is truly above the law, the Rome Statute must be ratified universally.

The lack of accountability in comprehensively addressing sexual and gender-based crimes, through adequate legislation and its enforcement is a significant obstacle to preventing and terminating these crimes and additionally aggravates the pervasive impunity. Hon. Ahmed Maalouf, MP (Maldives), Member of PGA, rightly pointed out that:
As an insufficient response to commission of sexual and gender based violence might on many occasions derive from an inadequate treatment of these crimes under domestic legal instruments, the recognition of the sexual and gender based crimes is a key to ending impunity for these crimes. Ratifying and implementing the Rome Statute increases the level of protection as these sexual crimes these become a part of the domestic criminal legislation (…).

About PGA
Parliamentarians for Global Action (PGA) is a non-governmental, non-partisan international network of approximately 1,300 legislators in 144 elected parliaments around the globe that informs and mobilizes parliamentarians to advocate for human rights and the rule of law, democracy, human security, non-discrimination and gender equality.

In the framework of its Parliamentary Campaign for the Effectiveness and Universality of the ICC System under the International Law & Human Rights Programme (ILHR), PGA has been working with Indonesian Members of Parliament since 2004 to promote the fight against impunity, the advancement of the Rule of Law, democracy and gender justice.

The work of the ILHR Programme and participation of parliamentarians from all over the world is central to the attainment of PGA's vision, to contribute to the creation of arules-based international order, for a more equitable, safe and democratic world.