|After watching the 5-minute video shot by Malaysiakini, I have an impression that Sharizat Jalil will not be firm and steadfast to demand any actions to be taken against the sexist duo in the Cabinet meeting today. The DAP delegation led by the SG Lim Guan Eng has brought the matter to the DPM office on Monday, urging Najib to sack both Bung Mokhtar and Mohd Said.
Protest held against sexist MPs
|‘We want gender sensitive MPs!’ This was among the slogans chanted during a protest outside the Bukit Perdana government complex in Kuala Lumpur today.About 60 people, carrying placards and banners, participated in the hour-long protest, which started at about 11am.
A small number of uniformed policemen kept watch as the protestors voiced their objections to the sexist remarks made by Barisan Nasional parliamentarians Bung Mokhtar Radin and Said Yusof in Parliament last week.
The protest was organised by the Joint-Action Group for Gender Equality (JAG). Among those present at the protest were a number of representatives from MCA, a member of the ruling coalition.
A memorandum was presented to Women, Family and Community Development Minister Sharizat Abdul Jalil.
Suspension, pay cut
The memorandum, read out by Women’s Development Collective executive director Maria Chin Abdullah, demanded a public apology from the two MPs.
She also urged Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who chairs the cabinet committee on gender equality, Sharizat’s ministry and the parliamentary caucus on gender equality to end sexism and gender discrimination in Parliament.
“Any MP who ill behaves in Parliament should be suspended for a period of six months and his pay and allowances cut until the suspension is over,” she added to applause from those present.
Sisters in Islam executive director Zainah Anwar said MPs who are gender insensitive must not be re-elected.
She cited five MPs – Bung, Said, Mohamad Aziz (BN-Sri Gading), Badruddin Amiruldin (BN-Jerai) and Abdul Fatah Harun (PAS-Rantau Panjang).
“We don’t want them to be re-elected, because they have ridiculed their constituencies, parties, the Parliament and government,” she said, vowing to stage protests in their respective constituencies should they stand for elections.
Don’t get emotional
Meanwhile, Shahrizat said she will raise the matter during tomorrow’s cabinet meeting.
“We (the government) are very sensitive, we’re following this issue and will take (the necessary) steps. We expect everyone, from backbenchers to the opposition, to behave with decorum and dignity,” she added.
However, the minister said there was no need to get overly emotional about the matter and ruled out the need to hold protests.
“I really don’t think its necessary to hold this kind of gathering. Just give me the memo and we will see to it. But I admit you are NGOs and you are free to do it,” she said.
Wanita MCA representative Felicia Ling (left) also urged the minister to take necessary action.
“We’re all behind you, you have the nation’s 50 percent population behind you. There’s nothing to be afraid of,” she said.
The protest was participated by representatives from various women’s groups, rights groups and political parties.
What the rest had to say
S Arutchelvan, Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) pro-tem secretary-general
The comments made by them is disgusting. The worst part is they made it in Parliament and they didn’t show any remorse over it.
The matter must be exposed to the public as it would prevent them from making the same mistake again.
They must apologise and BN must take disciplinary action against them.
Y Kohila, grassroots movement Jerit
They will get angry if the same statements are made about their wives and daughters, but yet they did it.
Women have progressed and we make half of the nation’s economic force. We must stop voting for them.
Lee Huat Seng, student movement Dema
There will be no equality until there is gender equality.
R Ragunanthanan of Young Lawyer’s Association
I’m embarrassed to be a man because of the two MPs. They must apologise and Sharizat must step down if she can’t defend her fellow womenfolk.
Fong Po Kuan (far left), DAP MP
We’re not here because we are emotional. We are here to stress that it is about time to stop the recurring of sexism in the Parliament.
I hope that after this incident, there wont be any derogatory remarks and gender discrimination in the Parliament.