PETALING JAYA: Legal activists and experts are calling for the setting up of a law and justice ministry.

Lawyers for Liberty founder Eric Paulsen said his foundation had hoped for the establishment of a
justice ministry.

“We hoped that it would be a priority for Najib when drawing up the new government but sadly this was not the case,” he told theSun.

Malaysian Centre for Constitutionalism and Human Rights coordinator Edmund Bon said any one in charge of law should look at ratifying the international covenants on civil and political rights and economic, social and cultural rights immediately.

Bon said this when asked to comment on the transfer of former de facto law minister Datuk Seri
Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz to head the Tourism Ministry.

Nazri was formerly the minister in the Prime Minister’s Department in charge of Law and Parliamentary Affairs.

Bon also urged lawmakers to enact a gender equality law and amend Article 121(1) of the Federal Constitution to restore judicial power to be on par with Parliament and the Executive.

Art 121(1) was amended in 1998 to state that the High Court and inferior courts shall have such
jurisdiction and powers as may be conferred by or under federal law.

Meanwhile, constitutional law expert Syahredzan Johan said that any de-facto law minister should make law reform a priority.

He said that it is hoped that a new law minister would correct the deficiencies in the Peaceful
Assembly Act and reform Section 114A of the Evidence Act, which has been opposed as oppressive to internet users.
©The Sun Daily