Is new Medical Act responsible for dumped babies?

by Rudolf Tiller


The frequency of babies/ fetuses found dumped at doorsteps, garbage dumps, drains, rivers, some killed blatantly and buried, or flushed down toilets have been on the rise over the last two to three years. Media reports suggest that the incidences reported are just the tip of the iceberg.

Shahrizat has claimed more support be given to single mothers. A lawyer apparently by profession, her latest outrageous outburst has now been to reprehensibly execute the parents. Ali Rustam has this novel idea that special schools be built only for teenaged mothers but soon after decided that an expedient scheme would be to actually reduce the matrimonial age to a minor 15 years. Rosmah on the other hand, appears totally lost and doesn’t seem to know actually what to do. But at least she has not come out with some of the ludicrous propositions suggested by Shahrizat or Ali Rustam.

Illicit sex and pregnancies have been on the rise for some time now wreaking social havoc especially to Malay families. With free pornography on the internet, aided further by some rather whacky Malay tabloids and our politicians setting poor examples by bombarding our kids daily on TV with sodomy cases, sexual escapades by politicians – a foreigner will think this is the norm in our country. In a climate such as this, teachers, despite their best efforts, cannot help if kids end up thinking that sex and immorality are OK. Coupled with poor discipline, teenage pregnancies and gangsterism are now established problems in schools.

Malaysia faced a somewhat similar problem in the 1970s when the same social problems cropped up during the “Minah Karan” era when Free Trade Zones comprising of Electronic and Semiconductor companies sprouted up all over the country. Although previous Health Director Generals knew about these problems, they realized that acting on them would introduce other social problems. To avoid stepping into uncharted territory, they condoned abortions until our education system, counseling and improved socio-economic environment reduced the incidence of unwanted pregnancies.

Parents, boyfriends, husbands, wives, victims, etc would visit their doctors discretely who would then arrange for an abortion although abortions are technically illegal in this country unlike in Singapore where abortion is legal on socio-medical grounds and the legal time limit for abortion there is 24 weeks into pregnancy. Singapore further does not define an age limit of consent for the procedure. However ttoday, with the new media and the immoral antics of many of our leaders, Malaysia is facing another tsunami of unwanted pregnancies.

The silent utilization of abortion as a means to curb unwanted pregnancies until a long term solution is found may have changed however, when in 2006 both Chua Soi Lek and the Health DG Ismail Merican, rushed through parliament an Act called the Private Healthcare Services and Facilities Act (PHFSA). Reports of the rise in dumped babies coincide with the passing of this Act. The MOH set up departments to apprehend doctors or clinics carrying out abortions. They even sent matrons to look for equipment used in clinics doing abortions. The ramifications have been far reaching. End result. Now no GP or even gynecologist want to do any abortions in their clinics. Some GPs have in fact flatly told their receptionists to not even entertain patients coming in with unwanted pregnancies.

The Health Ministry run Malaysian Medical Council compounded matters further when in 2007 it struck off UMNO’s own Penawar state assemblyman Dr Mohd Azam Rauzan disallowing him from practicing medicine because he apparently went beyond the call of his medical duties to help a fellow constituent by issuing a birth certificate to a patient who wanted to give her child out for adoption when she knew she did not have the means to care for the child as a mother. The Health DG and MMC without looking into the social circumstances were judgmental in striking off Azam stating it was “to protect the public and the profession”. Short sighted decisions can have serious long term complications. And this is one of them.

Our Social Welfare, Adoption agencies and Syariah bureaucrats virtually make it impossible for a teenage kid to even approach them, let alone help these kids. They look at these kids as social deviants – an evil to society, as untouchables and bind them even further with more red tape. Even Sharizat says they should be hung like murderers. They need help. Where are they expected to go? They go sometimes to their doctors.
Under the circumstances Azam broke the law to help a teenage pregnant mother in good faith by issuing a birth certificate so that the parents can be named and the newborn eventually provided for. And what did the government do to him? He was not only dumped by UMNO but also lost his livelihood as a doctor. Shahrizat, Ali Rustam and Rosmah, the MCA, Gerakan, etc need to look into their own backyard and at their Little Napoleans before they start pointing fingers at others or asking our Universities to “research” the problem.

The primary causes of these lost unmarried teenagers appear obvious. Declining social responsibility coupled with a pathetic education system that doesn’t inculcate proper values seem to be getting both school kids and young parents into trouble. Malaysia, thanks to Shahrizat’s and Ali Rustam’s globally reported “solutions” is in danger of being viewed as a banana republic having a runaway promiscuous teenage problem with no answers to its “dumped babies” problem. Actually there are.

The true solution lies in instilling good values in children by parents, teachers and this country’s leaders – aided by a strong education system. If these qualities are not there, teenage pregnancies will boom. Internet pornography is here to stay. There are even sex scenes in Astro itself to sway a young mind. Children need to be educated, cultured, given guidance and protected. But despite all these checks and balances, teenage pregnancies can happen. If you don’t want abortion as an interim solution, the country must have an alternate solution. Marrying them off at 15 is not one of them. We cannot step back to the Stone Ages nor employ primitive edicts to deal with these problems. The family, as a unit, in this country is more important now then at anytime during its existence and we need to cultivate that.

As an analogy, in the battle to eradicate malaria, you must first focus on preventive measures in killing the vector, the Anopheles mosquito, not on developing expensive vaccines nor building even more expensive ICUs to cater for the complications of the disease. Similarly, Malaysia must focus on preventing teenage pregnancies by better education and counseling, not hanging the parents. From a healthcare point of view, it would be prudent that Malaysia rope in a wise Health DG from Preventive Healthcare instead of righteous clinical specialists. This problem of dumped babies is in part a problem created by our current medical autocrats. Rosmah, would do well to start her research there.


  1. #1 by k1980 on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 11:03 am

    Have those kiddies been watching Viagra Chua’s videotape? Must charge him with corrupting the innocent, pure minds of minors

  2. #2 by k1980 on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 12:12 pm

    Noses sliced off if those unmarried teenagers were to be in Afghanistan, stoned to kingdom come in Iran

  3. #3 by dagen on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 1:55 pm

    Knee jerk reaction. Doctors would say its symptomatic treatment. And this is so umno. Always gunning for show only. So that people would get the impression that this umno government is doing something about the problem.

    But what is the problem really? Dumped babies? No. Not that, twit! I get the impression that dumping babies is prevalent amongst malays. Am I correct with my impression? If I am correct then why the malays? Start the analysis there. Social problem merely, or failure of some crucial umno gobermen policies like education, school system, crutch dependency mentality etc etc?

    This country is going to the dogs and umno simply has no idea.

  4. #4 by cseng on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 2:07 pm

    Besides hanging the baby dumper, hang the traffic offender by the roadside too. Soon, Malaysia will be model country with holier-than-thou society; isolate the social ills after that we are good Malaysian!.

    When you could not deal with problems due to religious/moral hypocrisy, hang them! warn them with bullets, ISA and scare the society until they pee in the pants.

  5. #5 by dcasey on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 2:19 pm

    Yes Rudolf, the sad reality is that this country has sunk for the past 3 decades to become a real banana republic today. The boomerang thrown 30 over years ago has come full circle to hit us all in the face. You have half baked leaders and politicians coming out with statements that make the world choking blue with laughter. With the country’s “cut to size” education to fit all including the rural, these politicians will next suggest that one should cut his toes so as to fit the shoes.
    But one thing is for sure and that is BeEnd=DeEnd.

  6. #6 by cseng on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 2:24 pm

    How shallow and superficial our though could be? When you said NEP is not the bas-tard, but it was bas-tardised! The implication is deeper, bas-tard NEP can be replaced, but bus-tardisation will keep bas-tardise anything close to them.

    Baby dumping is barbaric. Proposing death penalty for baby dumping without helping them or prevention it, is as barbaric, if not more. Why they need to dump their baby? Are they animal? Sexual intercourse, how the young and energetic could handle it?

    Sharizat, tell your daughter this “if you get pregnant, I will kill you, if you dump it, the law hangs you”

  7. #7 by Jeffrey on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 4:37 pm

    1. Mothers dump their babies – fathers run away and wash their hands off – because of shame and fear of social ostracism from the unwanted pregnancy.

    2. If their immediate families and society were less judgmental and harsh in moral condemnation of these youngsters who find themselves in this predicament due to raging testosterone of youth, more support will be given by immediate families and less babies will be dumped.

    3. If the babies are not wanted by their biological parents and immediate problems the State could be the nanny parent through a government funded organization like orphanage.

    4. The first Cause is 2. If everyone takes the holier-than-thou attitude, condemns the youngsters, threaten them with criminal punishment as if they have committed by extra marital sex the sin that deserves the fires of hell – and start making their lives here a living hell as well – can one blame these youngsters from hiding their pregnancy (if they don’t try to self abort by whatever means they think possible and dumping the babies)?

    5. Azam did the right thing but the Health DG and MMC were judgmental in striking off Azam stating it was “to protect the public and the profession”. The right is punished and wrong one praised – a sign of a society with inverted morality and shortage of rationality.

    6. It is not to protect the public and profession. It is to protect your kind of illiberal politics, the long and short of it. If you advise them, they’s tell you that if you don’t like it, you can always migrate, go to western societies and enjoy freedom of sex there.

  8. #8 by boh-liao on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 7:03 pm

    Not surprising lots of babies fr teens
    They watched d tiger show of our honorable ex-Minister of Health n they tot was nice
    Monkeys see, monkey do
    9 months later, babies come, how come?

    Now, Melaka CM promoted make love, not war/study
    Teens will happily breed like rabbits

  9. #9 by HARGA diri on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 8:25 pm

    Officially, Malaysia is a democratic religious monarchy country. So what happens to the religious part ? One is reminded of religious duties every time. That should have done something to the mind, no ? Equipments and medicine use in abortion will cause negative effects to the normal reproductive organs. Imagine after an abortion, one cannot conceive. Why harm your healthy body ? If you cannot do it the right way, there are so many family planning methods available. Not that they do not have side effects. But prevention is better. If this problem is so great, why worry if there are too young marriages ? Yes, going back to the dark ages but at least, one does not have to do things one is not supposed to do. You all should watch how an abortion is carried out using the ultrasound and in live. You all should.

  10. #10 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Monday, 16 August 2010 - 10:47 pm

    These babies are flesh and blood and NOT toys!

    THe ministries must do better with taxpayers’ money to provide for the care and nurture of unwanted babies, single mothers and teenage pregnancies.

    I think many Malay tabloids that feed on sex and sensationalism should have their licences revoked; not suara Keadilan and DAP.

    C’mon, BN government is nuts to have let this problem runaway out of control. Thanks again to Mahathir, pak Lah and Najib. I guess these blokes are too busy with the mega-dollars and mega-projects and mega-personalities that they forgot that there are God’s little angels clothed in infant torsos being dumped all over the place.

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