Suhakam chairman resignation a surprise

16 Apr 2019 / 22:20 H.

PETALING JAYA: Tan Sri Razali Ismail’s resignation as Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) chairman has come as a surprise as it is only two weeks before his tenure will end.

Razali, who had held the position since 2016, was supposed to have completed his term on April 27.

He said he had informed the commission of his decision, and had submitted his resignation letter to Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah as well as Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Bernama reported that Razali said his early resignation was to give more time for Suhakam to receive a new chairman.

“I have done three years (at Suhakam). I think I did a pretty credible job and I (now) want to do more than advocacy.

“Doing things like human rights, it’s an advocacy job and it is enough after a while. It continues to be what it is, advocacy. It doesn’t make a big difference on the ground,“ he was quoted as saying.

Suhakam’s reputation has been exemplary during Razali’s tenure as chairman, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram) executive director Sevan Doraisamy said today.

“Between the shrinking democratic space Malaysia experienced between 2016 and 2018, the cases of enforced disappearances and the incursion of Orang Asli land in Kelantan, Suhakam has proven itself time and time again under his leadership.

“Razali may have started as a diplomat but his time with Suhakam has shown that he is as much of a human rights defender as countless others. Suaram appreciates his contribution to Suhakam and human rights,“ Sevan said when contacted by theSun.

Suaram adviser Kua Kia Soong praised Razali during his reign for taking on the government in several controversies, including his action in the recent inquiry into missing persons where the commission accused the police of being involved in their abductions.

“To have the courage to hold Bukit Aman’s Special Branch responsible for the disappearances was very important,“ Kua was quoted by a news portal as saying.

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