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Malaysia

Suhakam defends inquiry after cops dispute findings on Special Branch

PETALING JAYA: The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) today defended its inquiry into the disappearance of several activists, after the police challenged its conclusion that Bukit Aman’s Special Branch unit was involved in the disappearance of Amri Che Mat.

In a statement, it said it had conducted nine public inquiries since its inception, with the contents of each report made public.

“Suhakam has not acted extraordinarily in its release of the reports on Pastor Raymond Koh and Amri Che Mat, and to claim that the commission is attempting to punish the police or provoke reactions from the public and the establishment is far-fetched,” said Suhakam acting chairman Jerald Joseph.

Earlier today, Inspector-General of Police Mohamad Fuzi Harun said an officer who had refused to testify at the inquiry was only a contract worker.

The inquiry had heard that a car belonging to a Special Branch officer, Saiful Bahari, was seen near the place where Amri was believed to have been abducted.

But Saiful was a no-show at the inquiry, prompting Suhakam to accuse the police of not cooperating.

Joseph said given the public nature of the inquiry, it was incumbent that the findings be made public, adding that there is no provision in law requiring that the police be provided with an advance copy of the findings.

“Suhakam calls upon the government, in particular the relevant authorities, to implement without delay the recommendations made by the panel of inquiry.”

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