LANDMARK RULING ON CHILD BRIDES BY INDIA’S TOP COURT ONCE AGAIN SAYS MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST!!

LANDMARK RULING ON CHILD BRIDES BY INDIA’S TOP COURT ONCE AGAIN!

From time to time when you least expect comes a great judgment!

And I am alluding to India’s top court ruling that sex with child bride is rape in landmark ruling for women’s rights

Yesterday India’s Supreme Court ruled that a man is committing rape if he engages in sexual intercourse with his wife who is aged between 15 and 18, a landmark decision that will affect millions of child brides.

For the record, the legal age of consent in India is 18 years.

They are strict and the law regards even consensual sex with a woman under 16 as rape, but an exception had been made in the past for intercourse between a man and his wife who is between 15 and 18.

“If a man has sexual intercourse with a wife who is below 18 years, it is an offense. The minor wife can complain against the husband within one year,” said the court, adding that lowering the legal age for sex to 15 for a married girl is “unconstitutional”.

The Supreme Court ruled the age of consent was 18 for “all purposes” after hearing a petition by Independent Thought, a non-profit group that sought to criminalize sex with underage wives.

however yesterdays landmark ruling and verdict would not be applied retrospectively, which based its conclusions on India’s Child Marriage Prohibition Act.

One must bear in mind that though illegal, child marriage is deeply rooted in India.

Like many jurisdictions elsewhere there factors such as poverty, weak law enforcement, patriarchal social norms and concerns about family honor are often blamed.

But challenges are there and this is clear from the views of a social activist!

“It is unclear how this judgment will be enforced as child marriages are rampant in tribal societies across India,” said social activist Mustafa of the Centre for Policy Research in New Delhi.

It is believed that the implementation of India’s top court ruling will be especially challenging amongst tribal peoples in western Rajasthan state and adjoining Madhya Pradesh province, where hundreds of child marriages are believed to take place every year.

We cannot deny but appreciate that social activists have been campaigning to prevent child marriages through education and economical empowerment.

But the reality in India’s 2011 census showed that whilst child marriage had declined marginally from a decade earlier, more than five million girls were still married before the legal age of 18.

Historically, if asked one finds difficulty answering the exact origin of infant marriages!

But according to claims by social scientists and village elders, they believe that this practice started around the 10th century with the first Muslim invasions that lasted over 700 years.

It was a reaction and fear of the conquering invaders that they would carry off their daughters and as such, rural families began marrying them off at an early age to ensure their safety.

MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST SAYS – BEWARE – THE CLOSET TERRORISTS WITHIN AND AMONG US MALAYSIANS!

‘We cannot have it both ways – say one thing in international platforms self-righteously claiming moderation but in Malaysia’s ground zero closing both eyes to the continued attacks, race, religious baiting and seditious utterances that goes unattended in domestic political expediency?’

BEWARE – THE CLOSET TERRORISTS WITHIN AND AMONG US MALAYSIANS!

We must be grateful that we have a professional formidable counter-terrorist unit in Malaysia, whose work has kept us all from harm’s way!

Thank you my dear friends!

But we cannot deny that there are far too many sympathizers and closet supporters herein.

Our borders are also very porous as well and entry and exits at our international airports and ports!

Just read and analyze the comments sections of online media and facebook of those which belong to a certain cross section of religious brethren!

The extremist ideologies, hatred, intolerance, seditious tones and utterances quite explicit which puts fear in the hearts and minds of the reader!

In the past, we must accept shamefully that we have had reports of Malaysian women apparently sympathetic to the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), and have reportedly traveled to the Middle East to offer themselves sexually to militants!

According to certain intelligence reports these women are believed to have offered themselves in sexual comfort roles to ISIS fighters?

The practice called Jihad al-nikah, permitting extramarital sexual relations with multiple partners, is considered by fringe hardline Sunni Muslim Salafists as a legitimate form of holy war.

Malaysia is not alone here as there is intelligence exchanged with other countries that reveal that Sunni Muslim women from Australia and the United Kingdom had also joined up with ISIS.

I am made to understand that Australian intelligence officials have information that more than 100 Australian Muslims were in Syria fighting alongside ISIS.

Malaysia initially revealed that about 30 Malaysians might have traveled to the Middle East to join ISIS.

Let us not forget, closer to home Indonesians and Malaysians, are among foreign jihadists fighting the Philippine army in Mindanao as stated by Manila’s solicitor-general which is a rare admission that outsiders are collaborating with domestic Islamist groups.

Let us not forget that there are also reports that several terrorists have also have stints at our institution of higher education, while others gone rogue when the cover was blown!

And this inexplicably has come back to haunt and hurt us and silence of those who were expected to defend our Federal Constitution and the secular state, address such atrocities, race and religious baiting, seditious utterances, playing race and religion has worsened the situation giving rightly or wrongly the perception it is alright to race and religious bait, threaten fellow Malaysians not of the same race and religion?

As such, it was a welcome sight that the Malay Rulers yesterday expressed concerns over the eroding unity and harmony in Malaysia, in light of racially controversial issues that have taken place of late.

A statement from the rulers, signed by keeper of the ruler’s seal Syed Danial Syed Ahmad, read:

“In recent weeks, the actions of certain individuals have gone beyond all acceptable standards of decency, putting at risk the harmony that currently exists within our multi-religious and multi-ethnic society.”

I am glad and it is heartwarming that the Malay Rulers as a body have found the present state of affairs in the country unhealthy and even dangerous.

Their stand supports the stand taken by our beloved His Majesty the Sultan of Johor and the Crown Prince!

I am glad that the Crown Prince of Perlis, and the Rulers have criticized the actions of “certain individuals which would further put our multi-religious and multi-ethnic society” at risk.

So far it is clear that the most dangerous groups in the country seem to be government-sponsored Muslim bodies and NGOs supposedly established to reach religious righteousness and instead preach only hatred and bigotry.

There are also claims of extremists and deviationist teachings by preachers and visitors from abroad wanted by their own governments on allegations of funding terrorism and money laundering activities and others from just north of our borders with Thailand!

The latter also uses children to collect monies for various causes but who is monitoring these activities and where are these monies going to?

I have never heard any of these groups advocating the virtues of peace, goodwill, love, generosity, unity in diversity and gentler aspects of their faith, instead there is only more hostility and supremacy preached; we have state muftis supporting discrimination against non-Muslims; one mufti actually stated that it would be acceptable for non-Muslims to be killed.

Was he ever charged by the laws of the nation?

That is not all, as we witness on a daily dose for further intrusions into the rights, interests and practices of non-Muslims – from forms of worship these have spread into one’s culture, way of life, and social practices.

We have cases where a civil servant has refused to execute a court order and till today, has made no real progress in apprehending those who openly kidnapped Christian pastors.

What is the perception or message sent out to peace loving and law abiding Malaysians?

What is the message given to these extremists and shenanigans?

We have politicians throwing stones and hiding their hand, we have spineless politicians who watch from the sidelines and in political comatose to who questions should be asked whether they are our politicians as well or just representing this racial group?

We cannot have it both ways – say one thing in international platforms self-righteously claiming moderation but in Malaysia’s ground zero closing both eyes to the continued attacks, race, religious baiting and seditious utterances that goes unattended in domestic political expediency?

WELL DONE HR MINISTRY – NOW ALL COMPANIES CAN USE THE MAS FORMULA TO RETRENCH WORKERS?

WELL DONE HR MINISTRY – NOW ALL COMPANIES CAN USE THE MAS FORMULA TO RETRENCH WORKERS?

Basically, did the very ministry, whose shoulders the rights, interests and needs of workers declare that a Company can avoid its debts and legal obligation by changing its ownership?

Remember MAS did not declare bankruptcy; it was just taken over by Khazanah as the losses were mounting.

And Parliament had been used to legalize the unfair dismissal thanks to the The Malaysian Airline System Berhad (Administration) Act 2015!

So please throw away or burn the books on the code of conduct for industrial harmony when retrenching staff as it is perhaps, no longer relevant to addressing industrial woes in Malaysia!

Inexplicably, despite legal and industrial harmony experts holding that the 40-year-old code specified the various steps when retrenching staff as it would cause the least disruption and inconvenience to both workers and employers.

The operative words being the disruption and inconvenience to both workers and employers!

So if you thought that the duty of the government as a responsible unit and stakeholder in public interest and social and industrial justice is to ensure that the workers’ welfare was given top priority should now re-examine these norms and priorities held high in civilized countries?

Malaysia ASEAN/APEC lead Consumerist, Datuk Dr Jacob George was commenting on the statement by Minister of Human Resources who stated that cases involving former Malaysia Airlines Systems (MAS) Berhad cannot be referred to the Industrial Court because the airline is “no longer in existence
“If the company has gone bankrupt or has wound up, we can’t go after the company.

“And by law, we can’t go after the individuals (responsible for the retrenchment) either,” Minister Riot stated when asked to elaborate on his previous remarks on the matter, at a press conference in Kuala Lumpur today.

Riot had previously declined to offer reasons for why his ministry will not be referring the cases to the Industrial Court.

This was after the National Union of Flight Attendants Malaysia (Nufam) asked why there is yet to be any action on the cases referred to the ministry by retrenched staff.

MAS were re-branded as Malaysia Airlines Berhad (MAB) in 2015, after it was delisted, and its operations were taken over by the government’s sovereign wealth fund, Khazanah Nasional Bhd.

As part of its rescue plan for the national carrier, Khazanah retrenched 6,000 workers – half of whom were cabin crew, who took up their cases to the ministry through Nufam.

It is disgusting that the whole question of Natural Justice to those MAS former workers who sought a remedy is put into the burner!

Questions will also be asked if there was “a fraud” conducted in the entire process through the moratorium (on MAS) which was lifted on May 24 which according to sources may have caveated workers’ rights, Dr George reiterated!

The moratorium bared any legal action from being taken against MAS was instituted with the passing of the Act.

It was put in place to allow MAB to replace MAS as the national carrier, as well as to provide for an effective, efficient and seamless means to transition the business, property, rights, liabilities and affairs of MAS to MAB.

Nothing surprises or embarrasses me any longer, said Dr George who is a lawyer and Malaysia’s lead consumerist and human rights practitioner, as a parting short!

MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST PRAISES PM NAJIB FOR BRIDGING OF A STRONG RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN STATE AND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO SPEARHEAD PROGRESS!

‘Let us work together bridging this relationship between all states and federal government as the Premier calls out for using the Johor Master Plan initiatives!’

MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST PRAISES PM NAJIB FOR BRIDGING OF A STRONG RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN STATE AND THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO SPEARHEAD PROGRESS!

Like all others, who have worked and lobbied for a comprehensive transport policy in Malaysia, I am really thankful to Prime Minister, Najib Razak and the federal government for contributing RM1 billion towards the development of the Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) while the rest, amounting to RM1.56 billion, would be financed via a Private Public Partnership.

The prime minister stated this in his speech during the launching of the 2017 Progressive Johor Expo at Kota Iskandar!

The Premier went further to state that the said BRT project, under the concept of inclusiveness and sustainability, worth RM2.56 billion, would be developed by the federal government via the Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) and the Johor state government.

The interesting features of what the Premier announced were that the BRT will be the public transportation infrastructure backbone in the Iskandar Region Malaysia in the next two decades.

Secondly, it is a ‘state of the art’ or ‘high-quality bus-based transit system’ which will give a reliable, comfortable and cost-effective service which all commuters have been waiting for!

BRT is expected to be operational in 2021 covering 90 percent of Iskandar Malaysia with a 51 km route through 39 stations.

What is remarkable is that, the said project contained the same features as the Light Rail Transit or metro, which is faster compared to normal bus services.

If connectivity and linkages were the folly of earlier projects, I am advised that the development of the BRT system will have smooth links to the Rail Transit System (RTS), High-Speed Rail, KTM Commuter and inter-town bus terminals.

This is the right tonic, as we look forward to an increase in population and economic growth to simultaneously boost job opportunities and address other challenges going forward!

Another area which excited me was the Premier’s remark which touched on Johor Skills Development Master Plan to ensure that workers in the state were equipped with the right skills.

To me this was a recap of what I had presented to the Johor state government and at the highest levels, in 2015 on a project called OIPAM!

Or – ‘Ops Isi Penuh Anak Malaysia’ – which is my brainchild to create opportunities, both through internships, educational stints, online educational courses, degree programs, in and out of the country at a costs that is value add!

This will help to sever the destructive dependence of foreign workers in Malaysia and all the issues and problems that is inherited with that!

OIPAM – a project accredited by the state agencies and federal ministries!

A program where the aspirations of the state government to spur skills development based on Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) for Youths, in this case as alluded to by our beloved Premier would be a signature feature!

This is why the relationship between the federal government and state is vital!

And let this historical value of state and federal government working together be the model going forward to assure holistic progress, development and an elevation of the standard and quality of life for all consumers not just in Johor but in all other states in Malaysia!

Let us work together bridging this relationship between all states and federal government as the Premier calls out for using the Johor Master Plan initiatives!

SEA GAMES 2017 CHEATS IN OUR MIDST – WHATS NEW MALAYSIA ASKS MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST?

‘In the meantime, the athletes are likely to be suspended indefinitely until their case is resolved.

But the stink generated by them hurts and smear the sacrifice, dedication and integrity of thousands who worked hard to do their best for Malaysia!’

 

SEA GAMES 2017 CHEATS IN OUR MIDST – WHATS NEW MALAYSIA ASKS MALAYSIA ASEAN/APEC LEAD CONSUMERIST?

So finally, what was most feared of after all the political double speak, spin, and alleged abuse of the media to prop up ailing politicians and others comes the news that one of those 145 medals has been tainted with by positive drug test.

Yes, there is no doubt that the just held Kuala Lumpur SEA Games 2017 in August may have been a success in terms of Malaysia’s gold medal haul, but with this sad news which has gone viral it brings embarrassment to the nation!

This against a backdrop that we are excellent and professional in organizing, administration and managing international meets!

The word out is that a Malaysian gold medalist is one of three athletes who tested positive for a banned substance!

The exposure came from non-other than the SEA Games Federation (SEAGF) who said they are still finalizing the details of the tests but will only be able to reveal the identities of the three athletes later this month.

But if you have any other thought you are mistaken as they go further saying that they can confirm that they have three positive results.

The Federation will release the findings soon.

Strangely, they did not reveal the nationality of the two other athletes who tested positive but it is believed that they were from two separate countries.

Thank God for that!

I am certain with this finding both the National Sports Council (NSC) and the National Sports Institute (NSI) will be embarrassed and red-faced as they were unable to emulate their achievement at the Singapore SEA Games in 2015 where no one tested positive.

This is significant because both organizations assuring that no Malaysian would test positive under their zero-tolerance policy.

With a backdrop that almost 80% of the Malaysian contingent were tested prior to the SEA Games, which ran from Aug 19-30 this is sad.

As per standard operating procedure in all sports competitions, the three athletes will have the option to request that their B samples be tested as well.

It is only after this course of action can the SEA Games Federation conduct a full inquiry and takes further measures.

In the meantime, the athletes are likely to be suspended indefinitely until their case is resolved.

But the stink generated by them hurts and smear the sacrifice, dedication and integrity of thousands who worked hard to do their best for Malaysia!