Citing Siti Kasim case, group calls for gender equality law

Women’s Aid Organisation acting executive director Yu Ren Chung speaks to reporters at the Ilham Tower in Kuala Lumpur June 25, 2018. — Picture by Miera Zulyana
Women’s Aid Organisation acting executive director Yu Ren Chung speaks to reporters at the Ilham Tower in Kuala Lumpur June 25, 2018. — Picture by Miera Zulyana

KUALA LUMPUR, Jun 25 — A women's advocacy group lobbied the Council of Eminent Persons (CEP) today for the enactment of a gender equality law and better constitutional protections for women.

The Women's Aid Organisation (WAO) told the CEP that the Siti Kasim's case underlines the importance of having better legislations to protect women.

“We did not have the time to discuss the case in detail, but we did mention it, as an example,” acting executive director of WAO, Yu Ren Chung related to reporters at Ilham Tower after a 40-minute meeting with the CEP.

Yu was referring to the high-profile arrest of the lawyer who has said she was sheltering a 24-year-old client Anis Nur Izzaty from the latter's allegedly abusive mother.

Siti was arrested early yesterday for allegedly obstructing a civil servant on duty; she had questioned the police's arrest of Anis in response to a report filed by her mother accusing the lawyer of kidnap though no ransom was made.

Anis was taken into police custody despite her argument that she was an adult and her rejection of the kidnap claim.

Siti was subsequently released after the magistrate refused the police's remand application.

Yu said that among the legislations brought up was a gender equality law and also strengthening the sexual harassment law.

“Clearly, our sexual harassment law is not enough to protect the victims and provide them justice fairly and privately,” he added.