Human Rights Defenders #2: Dato’ Mah Weng Kwai
Datoâ€™ Mah Weng Kwai, Commissioner, Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM)
In this eight-part series with the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM), we speak to the eight appointed commissioners about their work, find out why they are passionate about human rights, and the issues that they will pursue during their three-year terms. This week, we hear from Dato’ Mah Weng Kwai, a retired Court of Appeals judge, about what he hopes to accomplish as a commissioner, his thoughts on the prevalence of custodial deaths, as an author of a landmark judgment on the death of Teoh Beng Hock, and the compatibility of the concept of universal human rights with a pluralistic society like Malaysia.
Dato’ Mah Weng Kwai joined the Judicial and Legal Services in 1973, serving as Magistrate, President of the Sessions Court and Senior Assistant Registrar of the High Court, among others, during his 12-year tenure. He also served as a Deputy Public Prosecutor and Senior Federal Counsel in the Attorney General’s Chambers in 1978 and 1981, respectively. He joined the private sector in 1985. In 2009, Dato’ Mah was appointed as a judicial commissioner of the High Court of Malaya and then a Judge of the High Court of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur. He was elevated to the Court of Appeal in 2012 and retired from the judiciary in 2015.
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