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MEDIA STATEMENT
1 April 2021

STRENGTHENING VOICES, IMPROVING PARTNERSHIPS

The Centre for Human Rights Research and Advocacy’s (CENTHRA) commitment in the pursuit of a balanced and just human rights is demonstrated through our continued efforts where we strengthen voices through partnerships with a group of experts who have joined us to put together a mid-term review report of Malaysia’s 3rd Universal Periodic Review (UPR) cycle, where the review session had taken place in 2018.

In recent years, CENTHRA has been on an active reaching out journey to increase meaningful engagement with our fellow NGO activists, lawyers and academicians and to position them at the heart of our human rights activism.

Since our activists first participated in the October 2013 UPR session at the United Nations Human Rights Council in Geneva as observers, we have participated in fruitful conversations at different platforms. We have sent our activists to training sessions as well as worked on research initiatives with activists and academics around the globe who share our aspirations. These synergistic partnerships, and combining our efforts of starting our work at the grassroots have provided us with many useful ideas about how we can improve our work and provide better services for our communities.

In 2018, we have stepped up our pace with our involvement in the 3rd UPR session, and CENTHRA’s Stakeholder Report was one of those considered and mentioned by the UPR Working Group of that session.

As a continuation of our commitment, this month we are pleased to award 10 research grants to our research fellows in their respective areas. The areas of research covers children’s rights, freedom of speech, statelessness, migrant workers, refugees, human trafficking, business and human rights, and freedom of religion.

The research proposals were deliberated over, and grants were awarded to the research for, Hak Pendidikan Bagi Kanak-Kanak di Sekolah Agama di Malaysia, led by Prof. Madya Dr. Mohd Al Adib Samuri (UKM); Progress and Problems Related to Enforcement of Free Speech in Malaysia: An In-Depth Study, led by Dr. Murni Wan Mohd Nor (UPM); Statelessness and Legal Compliance: Gap Analysis and Recommendations for the Malaysian Government, led by Dr. Rodziana Mohamed Razali (USIM); Eliminating Forced Labour In Supply Chain, led by Dr. Andika Ab. Wahab (UKM); Displaced Rohingya in Malaysia: Protection Gaps on Right to Work and Children’s Education, led by Dr. Md. Mahbubul Haque (UNISZA); Cabaran Menangani Isu Pelarian di Malaysia, Prof. Madya Dr. Bakri Mat (UUM); Pemerkasaan Literasi Jenayah Pemerdagangan Orang dan Hak Asasi Manusia di Malaysia, led by Prof. Dr. Zarina Othman (UKM); Evaluating 10 Years of Progress & Bottleneck in the Implementation of Business and Human Rights in Malaysia, led by Dr. Abd. Hamid Bin Abd. Murad (USIM); Malaysia and the Treaty Obligations: Prospect and Challenges with Regards to Selected Core Human Rights Treaties, led by Prof. Madya Dr. Rohaida Nordin (UKM); and The Right to Freedom of Religion and Jurisdictional Conflicts in Malaysia, led by Prof. Madya Dr. Mohamed Azam Mohamed Adil (IAIS).

By offering these grants to our fellow researchers we hope to add value to the country’s UPR process and in the long term assist our participation during the 4th cycle of the UPR session scheduled in 2023.

We believe this form of partnership helps both our activists with their roles, and our research fellows by ensuring their research papers can be accessed by a wider audience. Though we have been occupied with other causes besides launching our new initiative coined as CLEAN (Community Ledership Empowerment Initiative), we remain steadfast in supporting our activists and research fellows in their research endeavours.

We are also proud to be working with our colleagues from other NGOs to find new ways to support the publication of UPR related research papers – responding to human rights issues related to our focus areas and to the needs of the research community in general.

We remain active during this unprecedented time and look forward to working with as many individuals and organisations as we look to develop or launch new initiatives to help support a Malaysian narrative of the human rights agenda.

Azril Mohd Amin
CEO, CENTHRA

Source – Centhra Facebook Page