By Muhammad Faiz
KUALA LUMPUR, 30 March 2017 – Members of Parliament (MPs) on both sides of political divide on 28 March have showed a rare stance as both have agreed on a common ground – to table the Sexual Offences against Children Bill 2017.
Before the tabling of the bill, child sexual grooming is not a crime as it is something we rarely heard of before but it is happening now. The world is constantly changing and evolving until it is possible for these sexual perpetrators to groom underaged children in matters related to sexual acts.
Surprisingly, sexual grooming is not a crime. According to our country’s Constitution, it is a crime only when the crime has been committed. However, it is too late by then as the damages have been done. For situation like this, not all cases are reported to the authority. By implementing this bill, many problems can be avoided, as it is better to take a preventive step.
One of the common modus operandi is for the perpetrators to find their victims through social media. They slowly feed the children with lies and manipulations until they started to trust them. Once the trust is gained, they will exploit the children for sexual fulfilment and needs regardless whether or not to develop a relationship or for child pornography.
“As MPs, our priority is always the people, especially the innocent children. This Bill is a clear warning to all the perpetrators out there. You can run, but you can’t hide,” Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said told The Star.
The Sexual Offence against Children Bill 2017 is an initiative by R.AGE, as they are the backbone behind the campaign. They have developed a social campaign, Predators in My Phone, where they disguise as teenagers and meet up with sexual perpetrators.
From the video, we can see that the perpetrators have made up lies, as they believe teenagers to be gullible and naïve. One of the sexual perpetrators even said to the teenagers that a woman’s reproductive system has an expiry date as they wanted to lure the teenagers to having sexual acts with them.
Shockingly, one of the videos shows Marina Mahathir reading the text messages sent to teenagers and it came from a teacher. The sex predator also claimed that his last girlfriend is 14 years old and a student of him.
As a society, we should pledge our support for this campaign to ensure the safety of our younger generation. We need to make sure that they grow up in a safe and conducive environment, away from sexual perpetrators.
From videos provided by R.AGE, one of the sexual perpetrators is a teacher and it shows that sexual perpetrators are people whom we respect in the society. Besides that, it does that show sexual perpetrators could be anyone regardless of religion, race and educational background.
As of now, 114 out of 222 MPs have pledged their support to the Bill. Thus, let us show our support by signing up the pledge at http://predator.my/. We can also let our MPs know that sexual grooming needs to stop and be declared illegal by asking them to sign the pledge.
We cannot stop our younger generation to use any form of technology and we cannot be monitoring their doings 24/7. Therefore, we need to educate our younger generation about the situation so that they will not trust people easily, especially those people on the Internet and social media.
So, let us make it safer for our younger generation and people by fighting for this cause. ***
Photo by The Sun Daily