International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims

24 March 2014

“The right to truth is both individual and collective. Each victim has the right to know the truth and how violations affect them. Informing broader society about fundamental freedoms and how they have been violated is a vital safeguard against abuses recurring.”
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Today is the International Day for the Right to the Truth Concerning Gross Human Rights Violations and for the Dignity of Victims, an important occasion where we honour the memory of victims of gross human rights violations, promote the importance of the right to truth and justice and remember those who have devoted their lives to promoting and protecting human rights for all.
Read the rest of this entry »

International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination

21 March 2014

A touchstone of any nation’s progress is surely the equal treatment of its different racial and ethnic groups. Today, 21st March; International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, is a day to remind ourselves of Singapore’s commitment to this goal.

The emphasis this year is on “The Role of Leaders in Combating Racism and Racial Discrimination” and it is a call to reflection and action by leaders in the government and civil society.

Our leaders have been proactive in managing race relations in Singapore and a lot of good has been done to develop mechanisms to prevent discrimination and to foster better inter-racial ties. The 2010 report of the UN Special Rapporteur on Contemporary forms of Racism, Racial Discrimination, Xenophobia and Related Intolerance discussed the threats posed by racism and Singapore’s efforts at combating discrimination through laws, policies and institutions. We have for instance the Presidential Council for Minority Rights, a body whose main function is to ensure that the bills passed by Parliament do not discriminate against any racial or religious group. Read the rest of this entry »

International Women’s Day – Equality For Women Is Progress For All

8 March 2014

“Countries with more gender equality have better economic growth. Companies with more women leaders perform better. Peace agreements that include women are more durable. Parliaments with more women enact more legislation on key social issues such as health, education, anti-discrimination and child support. The evidence is clear: equality for women means progress for all” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

International Women’s Day is a day to celebrate women, to take stock of the progress that has been made in equality, and to take the time to ask ourselves what more we can do.

The theme for this year’s International Women’s Day celebrations is “Equality For Women Is Progress For All” and it highlights the need for equality and the meaningful representation and participation of women in all aspects of society. It emphasizes how gender equality and the empowerment of women are essential to socio-economic development.

With the 2015 deadline for the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) right around the corner, today is also a good opportunity to review the challenges and obstacles that we still face in implementing the MDGs for women and girls.

As we celebrate, MARUAH also asks that we as a society work towards closing the gender gap between men and women in the workplace and at home. We also hope that in 2014, choice becomes a key operative word in decisions on sexuality, decisions on sexual orientation, decisions on pregnancies and in making police reports on rapes. In all these situations, women and girls in particular, must be given the help, counselling and support that they need to make the choices that are right for them and their choices must be respected.

Let 2014 be a year of honouring and respecting women’s choices and of taking proactive steps to achieve equality for women and progress for all.

MARUAH’s Position On The Public Order (Additional Temporary Measures) Bill

14 February 2014

As a human rights group, MARUAH, makes this stand that this Public Order Bill ought not to be passed in Parliament. This Bill is not a useful instrument to secure public order in Little India or in Singapore. It is a Bill that goes against the grain of observing human rights and the dignity of the person, because of the wide-ranging powers that will be bestowed on the officers who will manage the surveillance on the ground. Read the rest of this entry »

MARUAH’s statement in response to rioting at Little India on 8 Dec 2013

9 December 2013

MARUAH’s statement in response to the rioting at Little India on 8 Dec 2013.

It is sad and tragic that there was a riot in Little India last night where people were hurt and property destroyed. We offer our deepest condolences to the family of the worker who died and we hope that justice will be done for him. We are confident that the Coroner’s inquiry will be open and fair and will help bring some relief to his family.

What happened is wrong and attacking civil defence and police officers who are doing their jobs is unacceptable by international human rights norms. Read the rest of this entry »

MARUAH forum letter on disability

3 December 2013

3 December 2013 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities. MARUAH submitted a letter to the Straits Times Forum, which was published yesterday.

Break barriers for the disabled
IN CONJUNCTION with the International Day of Persons with Disabilities tomorrow, we wish to draw attention to barriers in our bid to become an inclusive society.

We acknowledge the Government’s efforts in taking on a fairly active approach towards breaking barriers through the Ministry of Social and Family Development’s Enabling Masterplan.

We also note the efforts of the Building and Construction Authority, which has updated the Code on Accessibility for the Built Environment.

However, the Government needs to do more by making physical accessibility a priority in urban planning. Read the rest of this entry »

MARUAH Press Statement on World AIDS Day

1 December 2013

Press Statement

World AIDS Day – December 1st, 2013

MARUAH recognises the importance of World AIDS Day On 1 Dec 2013. Together with the World Health Organization’s UNAIDS, we echo the call for zero new infections, zero discrimination and zero AIDS deaths. Read the rest of this entry »

MARUAH Media Statement – On diminishing space for public discourse in Singapore

29 November 2013


For immediate use  

29 November 2013

Dear Editor

We write to express our dismay at the attempt to prosecute Mr Alex Au for contempt of court and the reports about the Media Development Authority (MDA) seeking to regulate online media platforms the Breakfast Network and The Independent Singapore.

The members of MARUAH, as Singapore citizens and human rights activists, are concerned that these actions will further shrink the space for public discourse in Singapore. Robust debate, diverse views, questioning and criticism, as well as a healthy media landscape, are all critical to the development of a functional democracy. Read the rest of this entry »

MARUAH statement on International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women

25 November 2013

Violence against anyone is a human rights violation. Today, 25th of November is a special day to focus on violence against one group – women. Set aside by the United Nations (UN) as the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women, this day is one of commitment to stop the violence against women and to affirm that it is NOT right for women and girls to face any form of violence in the home, at school, at the workplace and in the streets. The sobering fact, according to UN, is that globally, seven in 10 women face some form of violence in their lives. In Singapore, research conducted by the International Violence against Women Survey indicated that 9.2% of the 2006 Singaporean women surveyed experienced some form of violence during their adult lives (from the age of 16) . Read the rest of this entry »

Defending the Legitimacy of Singapore Elections: MARUAH Position Paper on the GRC system

19 August 2013


MARUAH has published a position paper on the Group Representation Constituency (GRC) system in elections in Singapore.

In this position paper, the second in its electoral reform series, MARUAH approaches the issue of Group Representation Constituencies (GRCs) from the standpoint of the right to representative government as well as free and fair elections.

This paper concurs with the goal of ensuring minority representation in Parliament. However it argues that the GRC system is a poor tool to this end because it creates more impediments to electoral and representational fairness than it solves.

See links below for the documents

  1. powerpoint – MARUAH Position Paper on a fairer alternative to the GRC system
  2. MARUAH Position Paper On The GRC System

Click the link below to see the 1st position paper in our electoral reform series.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 31 other followers