Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cabinet to get ISA amendments this week

Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein had indicated he will submit the proposed amendments to the Internal Security Act (ISA) to the Cabinet at its meeting this week.

Hishammuddin announced that the Cabinet will then decide whether to table the ISA amendments in the current parliamentary sitting.

The current ISA (1960) allows for detention without trial.

“The ISA bill is ready. We have drafted it already and we are tabling it to the Cabinet soon,” the minister told reporters after the Yang Di Pertuan Agong opened the current parliamentary session here today.

He said progress in the amendments was going according to plan but there was still some time needed for various parties to look at the pros and cons of the amended security act, which touches on issues such as the right for peaceful assembly as well as detention.

“Basically the engagement process has been going very well. But there are still stakeholders that we need to engage, but I would like to look at it like I promised before, a package... by the end of this week (it should be) tabled to the Cabinet and we will ask then for directions,” he said.

Besides that the Home Minister also noted that the timetable for this parliamentary seating needed to be considered, as he would “like to see it debated thoroughly”.

When asked by a reporter on whether there is a strong possibility that the bill will finally see light in Parliament, Hishammuddin replied in the affirmative, but stopped short of confirming a definite guarantee.

“We hope so. What’s important is that the debate on the bill. If you just push it through this session, people will not be happy. We might still have to postpone the debate to the next session,” he added.

courtesy of Malaysian Insider

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