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No consolation for Penan rape victims
Published:  Jul 9, 2010 8:05 AM
Updated: Jul 10, 2010 4:23 AM

your say 'We have heard this before, haven't we? It takes two years to 'look for' the report, another two years to 'look into it' and yet another two years before concluding there is 'lack of evidence'.'


Women's ministry to 'study' Penan report

DOC: Last year, some NGOs highlighted that Penan women were being raped by loggers. Subsequently the Women's Ministry confirmed it. Now another report has come out highlighting the same issue and the Women's Ministry wants to study this report further.

No initiative was taken by Shahrizat Abdul Jalil or her ministry to curtail the problem the first time around so what assurance do we have that this ministry is going to do something to stop these Malaysians from being raped?

It seems to me that the Women's Ministry is only good for studying reports. Maybe it would be different if some male Penans can come forward and lodge a report saying they got sodomised by the loggers. They would then be able to see the prime minister directly and get the loggers sorted out. After all, our PM is a champion at taking action against sodomised (or those who claim to be) victims.

Joe: Shahrizat, our minister of women, family and community development, is like her boss, very adept in playing pretend. The trick is to "study" the matter to death, i.e. sit on the matter long enough for the problem to go away.

When public attention wanes, she gets off the hook without having to do anything. It's called people-first, performance-now eye service. It's an old trick. Shahrizat should try taking up something new, like ‘tai chi'.

Pemerhati: The Penan women were raped and some even have children as a result of these crimes. Shahrizat and the police knew about these crimes a few years ago and if they were sincere in wanting to do something, they could have easily brought some of the rapists to justice by using the DNA of the children as evidence. Nowadays it is difficult to believe anything the ministers say.

Yuvan: "The government will study the report...", "The ministry takes a serious view of this issue...", "The issue requires collaboration at multiple levels...", "The police will investigate all allegations..." and whatever else said by the minister is just rhetoric and nothing more.

How many more reports the government wants? And while the government can "keep studying" the reports for as long as it wants, how many more Penan girls and women must suffer in the hands of these cunning and ruthless loggers?

The Penan Support Group must bring its report to the attention of the international community and expose the misdeeds of not only the loggers involved but also the authorities who seem to protect the culprits all the way.

Chan: We have heard this before, haven't we? It takes two years to 'look for' the report, another two years to 'look into it' and yet another two years before concluding there is 'lack of evidence'. The ministry will swing into action if it's something like building unnecessary arches, gardens, monuments, etc - which comes with lots of kickbacks.

Anonymous: "Seriously studying" the matter means to us that nothing will come out of it. By saying that "we are looking into improving" also means another delay until Najib says, "You help me and I help you" come election time.

What you should do is simple. Use the 5W1H method - what, when, where, who (put a face and a name to this) and finally how? Otherwise, I suggest you get out of the ministry through the back door where you first came in, and drag along Koh Tsu Koon, Idris Jala, Ezam Mohd Nor and all those non-elected politicians appointed as senators.

The Plenn: Because of the international uproar, the issue just cannot be swept under the carpet. It is perhaps the beginning of the downfall of the chief minister of Sarawak. Only time will tell.

Substantiate rape allegations, says DCM Jabu

Watchman: Alfred Jabu (Sarawak deputy chief minister), even if the proof is in front of you, you will not see it. The proof is in the women who were raped. And for your information, no one is jealous of Sarawak or Malaysia, they only pity the weak and helpless Penans.

Leon Chan: Both Jabu and Sarawak police chief Mohmad Salleh are talking nonsense. The Penan women claimed they were raped, the NGOs merely highlighted their plight and suffering. The NGOs acted as their whistleblower.

If the police wants the NGOs to substantiate their allegations or to provide proof, then what's the use of having the police force? The task is not so complicated. Visit the Penan, interview them and get the relevant information from them. Does the police force need to be taught how to carry out an investigation? Why won't the police investigate? Why?

Rajm: When Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan cried that he was sodomised, all parties were concerned, even the PM. But here the poor Penans are raped, and Jabu and police are asking them to provide proof. This is how poor people without any connections are treated. Where is justice?

PM expected to visit Penan settlements

Sarawakian: So I guess that the Penan can expect lots of Maggi mees and goodies falling from the sky to entice them to showcase their loyalty to Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud and the BN. It's going to be another circus.

SKS: The visit will include a big feast and lots of drinking. After the PM visit, Najib will announce all Penan are happy. He will declare that the "NGOs have their own agenda and it's all lies."

See, not only ‘Paul the Octopus' can predict the future.




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