Sunday 17 July 2011

176 doctors call for release of 'PSM 6'

One hundred and seventy-six medical professionals today called for the release of PSM's Dr Michael D Jeyakumar and five others who are currently under Emergency Ordinance (EO) detention.

In a statement released today, individual doctors as well as members of the Perak branch of the Malaysian Medical Association (MMA) and the Perak Medical Practitioners Society expressed concern that Jeyakumar and the others were still in police custody three weeks after they were picked up at Sungai Dua, Penang.

They also said they were troubled by the prolonged and “illegal” detention of the 'PSM 6' - as they have come to be known - as well as the deterioration of Jeyakumar's health under detentioin.

Since his arrest on June 25, Jeyakumar has been brought to the hospital twice for medical treatment for his heart condition.

“Dr Jeyakumar and five other Socialist Party of Malaysia members were 'illegally' detained under the Emergency Ordinance recently. They have been placed in a cruel and unjust situation....

“We say that the detention is 'illegal' because till today, there is no solid and could someone with such immaculate professional standing and exemplary be an enemy to the country!

“The home minister must make every effort to secure the immediate release of Dr Jeyakumar and do justice to both his ministerial duties and to Dr Jeyakumar,” they said in their statement.

Jeyakumar was one of 30 PSM activists arrested on June 25 for allegedly 'waging war against the Agong' when materials purportedly promoting communism were found with them while on a roadshow.

From being investigated under 122 of the Penal Code, however, Jeyakumar and five others were re-arrested soon after being released from remand.

It was made known subsequently that the 'PSM 6', as they have come to be known, were being detained under Section 3(1) of the EO for threatening the 'public order'.

The EO is similar to the Internal Security Act, which allows police to detain suspects for up to 60 days.

PSM has described the accusations against PSM and its activists as "false allegations" and a reflection of the authorities' "ill will" against the party.
Stressing their “strictly apolitical” stance, the doctors said they were acting as colleagues of Dr Jeayakumar, “who is also an active and much respected member of the MMA” and whose family is much respected for their outstanding social work.

Jeyakumar family has contributed enormously towards the development of the healthcare services in our country.

“The government has rightly spoken much about transformation and change, and this is something every loyal citizen endorses.

“But what appear to be the deployment of Cold war tactics by resurrecting the “communist” and “foreign” bogeyman on political rivals in these days only serves to dissuade the public that the government is earnest in its efforts to bring about civil changes that would be in line with first world societies.”

Noting that Malaysia sits on the United Nations' Human Rights Council, the doctors called on the government to do justice to its position on this council by according and recognising the human rights of the PSM 6.

“The least that the Malaysian government can do is to live up to the ideals of the Human Rights Council รข”€ and not violate the very rights that the government has been charged to defend steadfastly.”

“In view of this obligation, it will be totally unjustified to continue the 'illegal' detention of Dr Jeyakumar and his team without giving them a fair trial in court.

“The government should do justice to its position on this council and convince Malaysians that there is no malice on their part. Denying Dr Jeyakumar and his team the right to defend themselves is denying them justice.”

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