Activist and dentist latest MLCM candidates

The Malaysian Civil Liberties Movement (MCLM) has named former AWAM president Haslinah Yacob and dentist Dr Nedunchelian Vengu as its third and fourth candidates for the next general election.

Haslinah, 49, has been involved in grassroots and advocacy work on women’s rights and empowerment for the past decade.

Nedunchelian, 42, a private practitioner, has served on a Health Ministry committee and is well-known for his social work as well as his efforts to raise industry standards.

On Dec 12, MCLM unveiled prominent lawyer and National Human Rights Society president Malik Imtiaz Sarwar as its first candidate.

Its second candidate, human rights lawyer Sreekant Pillai, was announced at the movement’s first public forum on Dec 21.

Launched on October 30, MCLM is headed by blogger Raja Petra Kamaruddin as its chairman and lawyer Haris Ibrahim as its president. The movement aims to pick 30 candidates to be fielded in the 13th general election. 

BIODATA Hajjah Haslinah Yacob
Hajjah Haslinah, a Qualified Valuer has been running an established map-making company with her life partner for the last 20 years. She is also the Immediate Past President of All Women’s Action Society (AWAM), a non-partisan independent feminist organisation committed to improving the lives of women in Malaysia. She has been involved in grassroots and advocacy work on women’s rights, empowerment, among others, for the last 10 years.

This 49-year-old from Kuala Lumpur believes that a person should be given the opportunity to compete on an equal basis; taking into consideration the various discriminations impeding this access to opportunity.

Her volunteer work at AWAM and other civil societies has made her emphatic and sensitive to people, and also enabled her to be in touch with the grassroots. These have shaped her thoughts and made her realise that there are still injustices in our country.

Haslinah is determined to do more to affect the lives of those marginalized and victimised. She believes that by becoming a Member of Parliament will give her that opportunity.

“I need to bring the people whose voices are being ignored by the majority, to parliament to make a substantial contribution to the country. I no longer want to stay in the sideline, but to roll up my sleeve now and do something.”
“So that I am not beholden to anyone but the Rakyat and God. I do not wish to waste my time and energy in internal politicking, but to do the work. Three years ago, I had to ensure my children are well taken care of first. Now that they are independent, I have time to concentrate in doing work for the people.”
Hajjah Haslinah is mother to three children, aged 25, 23 and 17, and is married to Haji Ho Chin Soon, a Fellow of the Institution of Surveyors Malaysia and a Registered Valuer with the Board of Valuers, Appraisers & Estate Agents Malaysia.
BIODATA Dr Nedunchelian Vengu
Dr Nedunchelian Vengu, a 42-year-old dentist, has been actively involved in social work since his primary school days giving free tuition to younger children and cleaning and painting temple hall.
This father of two children, aged 13 and five, had served as the President of The Malaysian Private Dental Practitioners Association for three terms, and other posts in numerous other dental organisations.
Dr Nedu, a private practitioner, had served as a member of a Ministry of Health committee to formulate guidelines for dental healthcare professionals on blood borne disease infection and was the dental practitioners association spokesperson in all meetings in Malaysia concerning private dental practitioners from 2005 to 2008.
He was a fellow of three institutions – the Academy Dentaire Internationale, International College of Dentists and International College of Continuing Dental Education. In 2009, he was awarded the Outstanding Service Award by the Malaysian Private Dental Practitioners Association and bestowed Ahli Mahkota Selangor(AMS) by DYMM Sultan Selangor, Sultan Salahuddin Abdul Aziz Shah.
At this while, Dr Nedu has been offering his services in countless medical and dental camps organised by non-governmental organisations.
He has also given talks at gatherings and schools and organised seminars on dental care, motivation for students, among others. Dr Nedu is a much sought after speaker by RTM and Astro having appeared on Selamat Pagi Malaysia and Tamil programmes.
Dr Nedu is the second of five children to his father who is a technician and housewife mother. He grew up in Jalan Kapar in Klang and now resides in Shah Alam.
His wife, Nyanambikai Velagri, who was previously a finance manager in a logistics firm, has devoted her life to taking care of the family to allow Dr Nedu to devote time to his private practice and social work.