Archive for category Syerleena Abdul Rashid

Child marriage is another form of modern day slavery

Syerleena Abdul Rashid
April 7, 2016

Pasir Putih MP Nik Mazian Nik Mohamad made a mockery of our institution today, by opposing the ban of child marriages by justifying that “If we restrict them from getting married, (their) lust will remain, and they will be exposed to premarital casual sex”. Not only is this justification sexist, it is a huge blow to social justice and human rights in our country.

Child marriage is catastrophic. Common sense dictates that it is immoral and the response given by Nik Mazian, indicate the distressing deterioration of reason and logic in our present day society. According to UNICEF, approximately over ‘700 million women alive today were married as children’ and similar reports by the UN, estimate that between 2011 and 2020, over 140 million children – mostly, girls, will become child brides.

Although in Malaysia, the legal minimum age for marriage under civil law for both genders is 18, girls can marry at 16 under Islamic law – and sometimes even younger with the consent of the Syariah court. In 2014, the Malaysian Syariah Judiciary Department received roughly 600 marriage applications for couples below the age of consent and approximately 446 of these applications have been approved by the department. Read the rest of this entry »


The kleptocrats who steal from us

Syerleena Abdul Rashid
The Malaysian Insider
5 February 2016

Corruption is a definite problem that exhibits itself in different ways (duit kopi, gifts, donations, etc).

Alwyn Moerdyk, a lecturer in organisational psychology at Rhodes University, highlighted that in many countries, culture was frequently used to justify blatant acts of corruption.

Moerdyk noted the “act of giving is a natural process for humans and is an expression of gratitude for a benefit received or to cement a relationship. And while some societies claim that gift-giving is ‘part of our culture’, there was no need for outsiders to confuse it with bribery.”

However, one should understand the hidden motives behind these acts – depending on the size or amount of such gifts, the purpose of cementing existing relationships and to forge new ones can be a tricky issue that has caused many sleepless nights for many elected reps and government officials.

Economic prosperity and socio-political progress can only be achieved when governments are transparent and accountable to the people. Democracy upholds the firm notion that the rule of law is sanctified above everything else and the practice of corruption only destroys the foundations democracy. Read the rest of this entry »

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Is there ever a positive side to beauty pageants?

Syerleena Abdul Rashid
The Malaysian Insider
22 January 2016

On a personal level, I have to admit, beauty pageants make me queasy because it sends out a pretty clear message that only beautiful women succeed in life.

Beauty pageants and other similar events where women are made to prance around all dolled up with fake smiles plastered on their faces have increasingly becoming more controversial.

The negative impacts it has will definitely resonate especially on young girls. Read the rest of this entry »


Tajuddin should focus on his job, not make racist remarks

Syerleena Abdul Rashid
2 Oct 2015

“Nak kena lempang macam itu,” those were the words Deputy Agriculture and Agro-based Industry Minister Tajuddin Abdul Rahman uttered recently. The Pasir Salak MP articulated such bigoted statements as a response to China’s Ambassador to Malaysia Huang Huikang visit to Petaling Street.

He warned further, “I want to warn the Chinese Malaysians, don’t think when you have a problem, you want to complain – just a little bit also complain – that there will be people to protect them.”

Two other BN component parties – MCA and Gerakan has since issued statements of their own; the former demanding an apology for singling out Malaysian Chinese and the latter threatening to deliver a “flying kick which is harder and longer than his hand”.

A politician of Tajuddin’s stature should have exuded some class in his response. No doubt, these are trying times but politics is about respecting the relationship between society and the government. Read the rest of this entry »