Aliran notes with concern the police authorities’ request to the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) to stop the public inquiry into the disappearance of Pastor Raymond Koh.
According to a Suhakam press statement, the inspector general of police had written to inquiry chairman Dato’ Mah Weng Kwai to stop the inquiry into Koh’s disappearance as they had initiated court proceedings against a suspect.
Section 12 (3) of the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia Act 1999 (Act 597) provides that where during the pendency of an inquiry into the infringement of human rights of a person the allegation becomes the subject matter of any proceedings in any court, the Commission shall immediately cease to do the inquiry.
In compliance with the law, Suhakam had to halt the public inquiry into Koh’s disappearance until further notice.
The halting of the public inquiry raises concerns. Has new evidence really emerged which could help reveal the truth as to what really happened?
It seems rather odd that the person now charged with the kidnapping had previously only been charged with attempted extortion of Koh’s son but had in fact been cleared by the police with regard to the kidnapping. Selangor CID chief Fadzil Ahmat was reported to have said “police investigations had proven that Lam had nothing to do with the kidnapping/disappearance”.
The sudden halting of the Suhakam public inquiry into Pastor Koh’s disappearance has raised eyebrows and led to many questions.
Aliran calls upon the authorities involved in the case – in particular the police and the attorney general’s office as the arbiters of law and justice – to work professionally. The authorities should endeavour to uncover and reveal the truth about what happened to Koh and the others who have disappeared.
Pastor Koh’s family and the Malaysian public deserve answers.
Aliran executive committee
18 January 2018