For Immediate Release
20th May 2016
COMANGO urges government to take UPR commitments seriously
The Coalition of Malaysian NGOs in the UPR Process (COMANGO) urges the government to uphold its commitments to the recommendations which were accepted in March 2014 during its second cycle of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR). The government is encouraged to make their UPR pledges public — in Malay, Mandarin and Tamil — and allow for public review of the implementation of these. Additionally, the government should take all necessary steps and measures to put an end to the regression of human rights values in Malaysia and renew its commitment to the protection and promotion of human rights.
Malaysia is encouraged to submit a mid-term report to the Office of the United Nations Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). However, the government, through previous consultations with civil society organizations had indicated that it was not inclined to do so.
COMANGO, on the other hand, will be sending its mid-term report to the OHCHR as mandated under the Human Rights Council Review 2011. The mid-term report details the assessment of implementation of a total of 60 UPR recommendations which Malaysia had accepted which are deemed specific and measureable. Among these recommendations, only 20% were fully implemented by the government. More worryingly, 57% of these recommendations have witnessed a regressing situation of increasing violations of human rights, and a trend of growing impunity.
Furthermore, since the October 2013 review, the Government has failed to translate Malaysia’s 2013 National Report, the Report of the Working Group on the UPR, and the Addendum to the Working Group Report. Peoples in Malaysia should know the international human rights standards that the government had promised to uphold.
For its part, COMANGO is pleased to launch the bilingual version of our report that was submitted to the UN Human Rights Council in 2013. We will be disseminating the bilingual version of our UPR report nationwide as part of our continuing work in engaging the government to uphold its commitments to respect, protect and fulfill the human rights of all persons in Malaysia as part of the UPR process.
COMANGO calls on the government to take its UPR commitments seriously and carry out efforts to include as many relevant stakeholders as possible. The UPR should be an open and participatory process where the government works together with rights-based civil society organisations, the national human rights commission and international bodies to reach a common goal of improving the human rights conditions on the ground.
UPR is a mechanism of the UN Human Rights Council aimed at improving the human rights situation on the ground of each of the 193 member states of the United Nations. In Malaysia’s context, government representatives will be scrutinized through a process of peer review in 2018, which by then will be its 3rd UPR cycle thus far.
Persatuan Kesedaran Komuniti Selangor (EMPOWER)
Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)
COMANGO 2016 UPR Mid-Term Review PDF Version