July 06, 2010 21:21 PM
KUALA LUMPUR, July 6 (Bernama) — Malaysia on Tuesday signed the instrument to ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities and withdrew its reservations on several articles in the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women.
The signing of the instrument by Women, Family and Community Development Minister Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil showed the government’s commitment to protecting and improving the welfare of the disabled, women and children.
Shahrizat said the Convention on the disabled outlined eight common principles, including respect and self-reliance, removing discrimination against the disabled, and their full and effective participation in society.
“We hope it will bring change to the lives of the disabled in this country,” she said at the signing ceremony, here.
Shahrizat also handed over the instrument ratifying the Convention to Deputy Foreign Minister Datuk Richard Riot Jaem to be sent to the United Nations for further action.
On the withdrawing of Malaysia’ reservations on certain articles in the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Shahrizat said the government would give children the freedom to have their say and the right to form associations and to assemble peacefully.
She said the move was in line with the recognition given to children’s rights as they would be the nation’s future leaders.
Besides that, she added, the government would also fix the minimum age for women to marry and make the marriage registration compulsory, remove prejudices and customs that discriminated against women, and stress on opportunities to be given to women to hold public office.
Shahrizat said when the government agreed to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women, it acted by appointing two women as Syariah Court judges recently.
“This is a positive step in raising the status of women in this country by giving them important decision-making positions,” she said.