PETALING JAYA, June 29 — Only the home minister can answer questions about the government task force into the enforced disappearances of Pastor Raymond Koh and activist Amri Che Mat, Datuk Liew Vui Keong said today.
Faced with a barrage of questions on the legal provisions for the task force’s set-up and its scope following criticism from several civil societies, the de facto minister said the Home Ministry has full jurisdiction on the matter.
“The task force has been set up under the purview under the Home Ministry, so you will have to refer further to the minister,” he told reporters, referring to Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
“It is already set up and you have to wait for them to complete their investigations. That’s all I can say on the matter,” he added.
Several civil societies have questioned the government on the task force, especially its composition.
Lawyer M. Visvanathan who chairs a group called Eliminating Death and Abuse in Custody (EDICT) claimed the task force lacks legal jurisdiction to pursue the investigations based on the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia’s damning finding in April that the police played a role in Koh’s and Amri’s disappearances.
Several groups including EDICT have also criticised the composition of the task force, stating that there could be a conflict of interest, as not all members of the task force can be impartial, with some having worked with the police when the enforced disappearances occurred.
Former High Court judge Datuk Abd Rahim Uda has been tasked to lead the special task force in the investigations.
Apart from Rahim, other members also include Datuk Mokhtar Mohd Noor (Former head of PDRM legal unit), Datuk Zamri Yahya (Police Integrity and Standard Compliance Department Director), Datuk Muhammad Bukhari Ab. Hamid (Director of Operations for the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission) and Mohd Russaini Idrus (Division Secretary for the Police Commission).