Hakam regrets the decision of the Prime Minister’s Office to not ratify the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination. Hakam, however, regrets even more that that this issue has been exploited to generate fear and divisiveness in the country.
Hakam urges the government to ensure that this precautionary stance is only a temporary measure and to continue to engage stakeholders on this issue to dispel the misconceptions on the convention.
Hakam also urges that any further discussions on the convention be conducted in a civil manner without threats and fear-mongering. The government should revisit its decision and reconsider ratification again in the future.
Hakam further regrets the calls for Saifuddin Abdullah to resign in light of these developments. The foreign minister has done an admirable job in advocating for Malaysia to ratify an important international human rights treaty.
Hakam will continue to support the government’s vision of a new Malaysia – in creating a fair and just society where everyone has a place under the Malaysian sun.
Lim Wei Jiet is secretary general of Hakam. He issued this statement on behalf of the Hakam executive committee.