Roselan queried on RM10m project
29 April, 2004
Kota Kinabalu: Umno Putatan protem vice chief Haji Ibrahim OKK Mohd Laiman Diki urged KK protem division chief Haji Roselan Johar Mohamed to clarify on the RM10 million development plan for Tanjung Aru.
He said Roselan, the former Umno Tanjung Aru acting chief, should not have bypassed the elected representatives in Tanjung Aru, as well as Umno Putatan, since the area was no longer under him following the redelineation exercise.
He said Roselan should have checked first with Umno Putatan protem chief Datuk Yahya Hussin since the area is now under its jurisdiction.
Ibrahim recalled that the development of Tanjung Aru and Sembulan received attention in a meeting between Umno Gaya and Umno Tanjung Aru which was still headed by Datuk Yahya Lampong with former Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad several years ago.
Dr Mahathir had agreed that Umno take the initiative to develop the areas but suggested that these projects be implemented by the State Government or agencies and not by any individual development company, said Ibrahim who is also the Tanjung Aru K3P Chairman.
KK Umno Head Apologises Over Rape Remark
May 24, 2004 11:33 AM
KOTA KINABALU, May 24 (Bernama) -- A Sabah Umno division pro tem head, who sparked an uproar following his "off-the-cuff" remark about rape at a seminar here on Saturday has apologised to all, especially women who were offended by his statement.
Kota Kinabalu Umno division pro tem head Roselan Johar Mohamed said his remark was either misconstrued or misinterpreted.
"I did apologise for the remark. It could be in bad taste but I did not mean for it to sound like that," he was reported as saying in a local daily Monday.
Sabah Muslim Lawyers Association (Salwa) President Fatmah Wattie Abu Bakar claimed she and the other guest speakers at the Legal Literacy Seminar for Women were stunned to hear Roselan stating, among others, that "if you cannot fight rape, better lay down and enjoy it".
Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman said he was saddened by the remark and would advise Roselan to be more careful.
Roselan claimed the particular phrase was a proverb he took from Confucius.
"Please accept my humblest apology," he said as women organisations in Sabah expressed outrage over the remark.
Roselan said sexual crimes were heinous acts and he shared the belief that the offences warranted stiff punishment.
Roselan misquoted Confucius, says Chau
25 May, 2004
Kota Kinabalu: Confucius had never said that “if you cannot fight rape, better lay down and enjoy it” as claimed by Umno Kota Kinabalu pro tem chairman Haji Roselan Johar Mohamed, said Sabah Chinese Culture Association Chairman Datuk Chau Tet On.
“Confucius had never said so, if that was what Haji Roselan was referring to,” he said.
He said if Roselan’s remark was taken from other sources, we would like him to point out the source,” Chau said Monday.
According to him, Confucius seldom touched on sex and even if he did say something that sounded unfair to women, it would have totally been rejected by the Chinese society.
On Roselan’s apology, Chau said apology is one thing but one should be serious about matters like this, especially when rape cases in the country are on the rise.
Roselan continues to come under fire
26 May, 2004
Kota Kinabalu: The Umno division leader here who made a callous remark about rape victims has continued to come under scathing attack for his insensitivity.
Wanita MCA Chairman, Datuk Dr Ng Yen Yen, said she was shocked by Roselan Johar Mohamed’s mindset, adding that it was preposterous to link his comment to Confucius.
She said Roselan was “confused” because the Chinese philosopher did not have such a saying attributed to him, adding that Roselan should apologise to rape victims and women.
Dr Ng said Roselan had insulted Confucius who preached compassion, love and respect.
Women’s Aid Organisation said the statement by Roselan was “misogynistic, insensitive and trivialises the very suffering, degradation and horror experienced by rape survivors”.
Its Executive Director, Ivy Josiah, said public officials should be made more aware of the nature and effects of rape before expressing their views.
Meanwhile, President of the Sabah Thalassaemia Society, Abdul Rahim Hj Kahar, called for Roselan to be replaced.
Abdul Rahim, who is also Vice-President l of the Federation of Thalassaemia Associations Malaysia, said Roselan’s utterances were bound to reflect on Umno as a whole.
“As far as our Society is concerned, his statement is certainly not well-received and does not help in any manner to give moral support to rape survivors, in the light of a rape case involving one of our patients.
“His remarks have cheapened the status of women and girls in Sabah. I am speaking on behalf of the hundreds of thalassaemia patients in Sabah under the care of hospitals’ Thalassaemia Treatment Centres,” he said.
He said sometime in the middle of last year, a 16-year-old patient was raped in some bushes near Tanjung Aru by an unknown person who, earlier, offered a lift while the girl was waiting for transport at a bus stop, together with another patient.
The duo had just received blood transfusion at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital’s Thalassaemia Treatment Centre and wanted to go home. The other patient, however, managed to escape.
“Given the circumstances when the victim is chronically unwell, would she enjoy such an experience? On the contrary, it would only add to her physical and mental trauma,” Kahar contended.
Joining the chorus, Social activist Datin Sue Jayasuriya said she believed that many men are also furious over the remarks.
“Roselan’s action has tarnished the image of men. Our men are respectable people who have high moral principles and respect their mothers, sisters, wives and daughters,” she said.
She called on the men to express their displeasure to show that they do not fit into the likes of Roselan.
Roselan trivialised seriousness of rape, says Sawo
27, May 2004
Kota Kinabalu: Sabah Women Action Resource Group (Sawo) on Wednesday affirmed the views of the Sabah Muslim Women Lawyers Association (Salwa) and called on the Chief Minister to introduce measures such as awareness training to ensure that the political leadership is sensitive to the sentiments of their electorate.
Sawo President, Mary Lee, said the recent remarks on rape victims made by Umno Kota Kinabalu pro tem chairman, Roselan Johar Mohamed, trivialised the seriousness of the crime.
“His action is a setback in efforts made by the Government, women’s organisations and concerned individuals to combat violence against women.
“This shows that the issue of violence against women is still not taken seriously by some our leaders,” she said in a statement Wednesday.
Noting the intense reactions and outcry from various groups and individuals over the past three days, Lee said it showed Malaysians, in general, and Sabahans, in particular, will not tolerate any form of violence against women, be it physical, sexual or verbal.
“It is heartening to know that this is no more a ‘women’s problem’ but has become a social concern.
“Sawo reiterates that it is the collective responsibility of both women and men to end violence against women.”
She said rape is a heinous crime and its alarming incidence in the country had warranted the Government’s action to amend the Penal Code recently to provide for heavier deterrent sentences.
Quoting the latest statistics from the Royal Malaysian Police, Bukit Aman (earlier quoted by the Ministry of Women, Family and Community Development), she said 7,456 rape cases were reported in Malaysia between 1998 and 2003.
“Of the figure, 661 cases occurred in Sabah and these do not include unreported rapes.”
Lee countered that instead of the psychological assessment, as suggested regarding the management of rape victims, facilities in the form of psychological support services need to be provided.
“This is to enable women to express what they endured, to receive acknowledgement of their suffering and personal violation and also to get re-assurance, practical advice and trauma counselling.
“Such services are to be included as a vital component when setting up shelters for distressed women and girls. These (shelters) are urgently needed in Sabah but unfortunately still unavailable.”
Need we say more about Roselan? (Opps .. Haji Roselan). When a leader mades such a statement he is automatically disqualified as a leader. No one, men or women alike, would ever trust him and respect him anymore, despite whatever excuses he gives and how many times he apologises.
Roselan has been given a chance to lead. He screwed it up. So he should go. If no action is taken against Roselan, it only shows those with authorities either equally insensitive or they too, have similar mentality.