Speaker rejects Anwar’s motion to debate ICERD in Parliament

Azril Annuar
Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim speaks to the reporters at Parliament December 6, 2018. — Picture by Mukhriz Hazim

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 6 — Dewan Rakyat Speaker Datuk Mohamad Ariff Md Yusuf has rejected Port Dickson MP Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s motion to debate the government’s decision not to ratify the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD).

Ariff told the Lower House today that he does not think the issue is urgent enough for a debate.

“After taking into consideration the environment (surrounding the issue) and response from certain parties I don’t think this is a debate that is urgent and needs to be prioritised. I’ve allowed Port Dickson to give his explanation so everyone will understand the content of his motion.

“But my decision on this matter remains the same, I reject Port Dickson’s motion,” said Ariff.

Earlier, Anwar said despite the government and Cabinet’s decision not to ratify the convention, there are still pockets of the public who remain concerned over the matter.

He said that the Malaysian Federal Constitution already rejects racial discrimination and wanted the Parliament to support the Cabinet’s decision.

He added that the countries who supported ICERD had faced racial persecution such as Apartheid in South Africa.

“Up till today there is positive discrimination in South Africa and ICERD allows for this. The impoverished South Africans who were left behind are given means to make their lives better,” said Anwar.

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