The Rise of Sexual Crimes in Malaysia. What Should Women Do?

Sexual crime on the rise in Malaysia – equip yourself with safety measures and keep an eye on one another!

Manipulated image. (credits: am2pmnews)

A tall, dark man tailing a woman upon walking to her car. She walks faster but that does not stop him from coming closer. She lets out a desperate scream which no one heard – and at the most unfortunate second, he grabbed her by the arms and cornered her to the darkest of alley. What’s coming next is every woman’s worst nightmare – rape.

That is the imagery we have in most of our heads when it comes to sexual crime – the stranger is the perpetrator. What goes unrealised, however, is that the people in our inner circle, or the cute guys we just met could be the bad guys. This false sense of familiarity has victimised way to many women, especially underage girls in the country.

Sexual Crimes and Children Investigation Division in Malaysia revealed that 80% of the sexual crimes against minor in this country are committed by those known by victims – relatives, boyfriends or friends.

Women’s Centre for Change (WCC) President Mariam Lim yesterday said that there are at least 20,000 unreported sexual crimes in Malaysia every year; this makes 8 out of 10 cases stay under the radar.

Last year, PDRM stated that 10 women are being raped in Malaysia every day. However, according to NGO All Women’s Action Society (AWAM), most cases are undetected – conveying an extremely alarming rate of a rape case happening every 15 minutes every day!

Unlike other form of crimes, sexual crimes are much trickier because victims get deeply traumatised that many choose to stay away from the authorities. The extra wound caused by being interrogated, the fear of social judgement, and the nastiest of them all – terrors from perpetrators, make it THAT harder for victims to seek justice for what has been done to them. It certainly does not help the case when the court decides to go in favour of perpetrators, instead of the victims. When a country let this happen, moreover allowing it to become some kind of trend, not only is the country’s name in jeopardy – it rather means that a country does not fulfill its most basic duty: to protect the welfare of its people.

Section 375, 376 and 377 of the Penal Code blatantly state the nation’s promise to protect its citizens against sexual crimes: forced sexual intercourse, sexual intercourse with anyone below 16 years old, aggravated rape and marriage rape against other.

Malaysia, stand up for your own people!

What should Malaysian women do?

We urge fellow women to always keep your guard up around men you just met. Pretty faces, high education and big bucks show nothing about one’s personality. Always take time to know a man before deciding to spend alone time with him, and do not let romantic moments cloud your judgements.

PDRM revealed that half of the sex crimes in the country victimised under 16 girls. Equip our kids, cousins, and students with proper sexual education to enable them to know their physical rights, and for the boys to know how to respect the girls.

In regards to your relatives, know that you have every right to stay away or warn any uncle, brother or cousin who make you feel physically uncomfortable. Familial relationship is to be respected but your body is solely yours. You set your own boundaries and no one has the right to go against it.

It is also very important to have a strong social support to guide you in relationships and its boundaries. Although we think we know our ways, there are times when we are blinded by love and we need family and friends to guide and help us to stand up for ourselves.

In cases of sexual crimes, contact these law firms. The firms stated below are listed under HG Worldwide Legal Directories as those with registered sex crime lawyers.

credits: The Star Online, WCC, HG Worldwide Legal Directories

Nina Hidayat

Nina Hidayat survives life by heart and intuition (plus a bit of logic). In between voicing out through writing, she daydreams about clothes and shoes. Recently, she started 'Sepatu Merah' - a self-designed handmade shoe line dedicated for women. Life is a fashion playground, after all.

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