‘Spe­cialised train­ing, bet­ter en­force­ment needed’

New Straits Times - - News -

KUALA LUMPUR: Child pro­tec­tion ac­tivists are keep­ing their fin­gers crossed in the hope that the Sex­ual Of­fences Against Chil­dren Bill 2017 will dras­ti­cally in­crease the con­vic­tion rate of sex­ual of­fend­ers once it comes into ef­fect.

They called for more spe­cialised train­ing for par­ties in­volved in de­tec­tion and con­vic­tion of of­fend­ers, faster com­ple­tion of court cases and stronger en­force­ment.

Child pro­tec­tion con­sul­tant Vi­jayaku­mari Pil­lai said she was happy with the first read­ing of the bill for the act, tabled in the De­wan Rakyat here yes­ter­day, but raised con­cerns about the poor rate of con­vic­tion for of­fend­ers.

“It has al­ways been the same... in most cases re­ported, the of­fend­ers are not ar­rested. I hope the bill touches on in­creas­ing the con­vic­tion rate dras­ti­cally.

“In en­force­ment, po­lice need a lot more train­ing, espe­cially dur­ing the in­ves­ti­ga­tion process,” she told the New Straits Times.

PS The Chil­dren ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Madeleine Yong said the im­prove­ment of all leg­is­la­tion in the best in­ter­est of chil­dren was a wel­comed ini­tia­tive.

She high­lighted the need for fast-track­ing sex­ual abuse cases and al­low­ing un­cor­rob­o­rated ev­i­dence as huge plus points to sup­port a child vic­tim.

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