Child Act - Spare the Rod?
James Nayagam | Vijay Baskar | Nizam Bashir
Over the weekend, news reports suggesting that parents could be jailed under a new Child Act if they were to cane their children exploded into a full blown controversy that landed on Monday’s front pages. It was the result of a misunderstanding regarding a proposed provision in the replacement for the existing Child Act 2001 expected to be tabled in June. The Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development has since issued a clarification that the provision refers only to the caning of convicted juveniles. In the ensuing debate questions were raised about aligning domestic laws with the Convention on the Rights of the Child, the case of Malaysians parents convicted in Sweden for child abuse as well as the parental prerogatives and religious injunctions on corporal punishment. We look at a controversy based on a misunderstanding.
Aziff Azuddin and Melanie Abraham contributed to this report.
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