Top posts

Featured Posts

Stop bullying NGOs, Sabah govt told

By Luke Rintod of FMT
A well known activists wants the Sabah state
government to stop harassing non-governmental
organisations in the state.
KOTA KINABALU: A long-serving Sabah human rights and social activist here has called on the Sabah government to be more accommodating to civil society groups in the state and not to apply unnecessary “pressure” on non-governmental organisations.
Patrick Sindu, said any “subtle pressure” from the government on these groups could be interpreted by the public and the international community, either rightly or wrongly, as interfering, manipulating, victimising or exploiting these NGOs in an effort to align them with the state government.
“It is quite alarming to me to read reports in recent days such as the Suhakam’s rally being forced at the eleventh hour to relocate from Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) to an undesignated place due to a certain letter from the Chief Minister’s Department ordering the change in venue,” he told FMT.
Sindu was commenting on the Suhakam rally, which was jointly organised by a few NGOs, held in conjunction with the United Nations International Human Rights Day over the weekend.
Sindu, who witnessed his Consumer Association of Sabah (Cash) being de-registered by the Registrar of Society (ROS) years back, said that good governance should be more listening to dissenting views rather than pressuring NGOs for submission to the establishment or executive branch of government.
“In modern societies like Europe, NGOs are being trusted by the public for speaking up for the needs of different groups in their society, and the governments engage with them positively.
“Here in Malaysia it seems the more outspoken the NGO, the more they seem to be under pressure from the ruling party. We have seen what happened to Suhakam, Suaram, Bersih and the anti-Lynas group…” said the activist who once served as United Nation’s rapporteur in Asia-Pacific.
Asked to comment on the action by the Consumers Affairs and Protection Society of Sabah (Caps) president, James Bagah, who  quit opposition party — Star ,  so that the NGO would not be perceived as a opposition mouthpiece, Sindu said non-political NGOs should not harbour political interests.
He however refused to comment on Bagah’s attacks on opposition parties and praises towards the leadership of Prime Minister Najib Razak and Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman.
He said NGO’s should not have any political agenda or interest.
“A wise leader would know his space,” he said

No comments:

Post a Comment

Search This Blog