Using the ISA

IMAGINE this. What if Teoh Beng Hock had been taken into the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC)’s custody for questioning and nobody had known? And then imagine this. What if A Kugan‘s arrest and detention was also a secret that nobody knew about?

By Jacqueline Ann Surin (The Nut Graph)

Funeral procession for Kugan, 28 Jan 2009
I wager it wouldn’t take too much to imagine that their deaths in custody would have gone undocumented, never to be revealed. And nobody would be any the wiser that they had died while in the custody of enforcement agencies. No inquest would have been held into why a witness should fall out of a window of the MACC’s building to his death. No police officer responsible for Kugan’s beatings and death would have been held accountable. No justice would have been done.

But this is exactly what the Malaysian government is asking us to accept when it refuses to reveal the identity of the 10 who were detained under the Internal Security Act (ISA) in January 2010 for alleged links to terrorism. Under the guise of national security and the sensitivity of ongoing investigations, Malaysians and the international community are being asked to trust the secrecy of a system that is highly prone to abuse and yet obviously unaccountable.

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