Nancy: Child Act meets global standards, periodic reviews will strengthen it

JOHOR BARU: The Child Act is sufficient to protect the rights of children but it will be continually reviewed to ensure greater protection for the vulnerable, says Datuk Seri Nancy Shukri.

The Women, Family and Community Development Minister said the Act was amended recently, in 2021.

“According to a United Nations Children’s Fund (Unicef) report, our laws comply with international child rights conventions.

“But it does not stop there; it is a process that will continue,” she said when met before visiting a children’s shelter home here on Thursday (Jan 5).

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On Wednesday (Jan 4), Permaisuri Johor Raja Zarith Sofiah Binti Almarhum Sultan Idris Shah said the Child Act needed to be strengthened, with legislative provisions for more proactive and aggressive action when needed.

Her Majesty questioned the weaknesses in the system related to the safety and protection of children in a meeting with government agencies and non-governmental organisations at Istana Polo here.

“Where is the weakness in our system so that such terrible abuse like the recent case of a four-year-old boy can happen?

“There may be various factors, but here is the role that the authorities need to play to improve this situation.

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“There may be many people who are not aware of the channels to use in cases involving children.

“There is also an issue of trust deficit on the effectiveness of reports made to the authorities – whether their follow-up actions are effective or not in ensuring the best environment to protect the victims,” Her Majesty added.

Raja Zarith Sofiah expressed hopes that all the parties concerned would take steps to improve the child protection system.