Malaysia

New laws to replace the Emergency Ordinance

The first draft of a new set of laws to replace the Emergency Ordinance (EO) is now at the Attorney-General's Chambers.

Home Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (pic) said the government decided on the new laws following the spike in crime after the abolishment of the EO and the Restricted Residence Act.

"We welcome new ideas and suggestions from everyone, including opposition leaders and non-governmental organisations to ensure the new laws are effective," he said.

"They can channel their suggestions to me. If they don't send in their suggestions, they should not complain when the law is introduced," he said.

Ahmad Zahid said the Home Ministry will also set up a task force to track down drug lords and pushers who were freed after the EO was repealed.

"We found that many of them went back to their old ways after the preventive laws were repealed and they were released from detention."

The Malaysian Insider recently spoke to several senior police officers who alleged that the repeal of the preventive laws saw more than 2,500 detainees released back into society.

Police also claimed that the former detainees were now back to their old ways while police had one hand tied behind their backs.

Ahmad Zahid’s announcement of the new laws comes after Minister in the Prime Ministers Department Nancy Shukri told parliament on Monday that the government is prepared to enact new laws to replace the EO to deal with escalating crime.

DAP Puchong MP Gobind Singh Deo today faulted the government for the spike in crime.

“The government should accept and concede that it's earlier decision to repeal the laws was hastily made, without proper study nor due regard for the consequences which would follow.

"I have raised this before. I have asked the government to explain what it planned to do given the fact that the repeal of the EO would result in the release of hundreds if not thousands of persons said to be hardened criminals, back into society,” he said in a statement.

Gobind said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was just interested in the government’s image when the decision was taken to repeal the preventive laws.

He said Najib should not hide behind complaints by the police to convince Malaysians that preventive laws are necessary to justify bringing back the EO.

“He should acknowledge that the problem isn't the result of the repeal of the EO alone but a combination of many factors and the failure of the government to find solutions to all these problems.

"Bringing back the EO would be wrong as Parliament moved to repeal it because it involved detention without trial which led to serious abuse over the years.

"What is now required is a complete overhaul of the laws which relate to police powers and detention. The government should now go back to the drawing board and come up with a holistic plan to solve this problem at all levels," Gobind added. - July 4, 2013.

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