Group takes search for missing persons to PM

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on February 14, 2019.
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KUALA LUMPUR: A group seeking to trace four persons who went missing two years ago has asked Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to order a new probe into the cases and to ensure justice.

The Citizens Against Enforced Disappearances (Caged) called on Dr Mahathir to meet the family members of the missing persons to establish what happened and bring those responsible to justice.

“When Pakatan Harapan won the 14th general election, Tun (Dr Mahathir) announced that the new government would uphold the rule of law. We were filled with hope that these mysterious disappearances would finally be resolved, and that truth and justice would prevail,” the group said in a memorandum to the prime minister.

The four missing persons are Pastor Raymond Koh, who was abducted on a street in Petaling Jaya on Feb 13, 2017, Perlis-based activist Amri Che Mat, Pastor Joshua Hilmy and his wife, Ruth Sitepu.

“We believe these disappearances are related because all four were religious social workers and Pastor Raymond Koh and Amri Che Mat were persons of interest to the Special Branch of the Police,” the group said in its memorandum, which was presented to the PM’s Office yesterday.

The Free Malaysia Today news site reported Caged spokesperson Rama Ramanathan as saying: “If the four missing persons are suspected of wrongdoing, they should be investigated, charged in a court of law, tried and, if found guilty, sentenced,” he said.

The memorandum also said: “We believe we are speaking for large numbers of Malaysians when we say that the right thing to do is to appoint skilled, independent investigators who will establish what actually happened and bring the perpetrators to justice.”