MANCHESTER: Malaysia will study the experiences of Britain in addressing human trafficking in terms of approach and preventive measures through more stringent laws, said Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.
He said this included looking at whether the Anti-Trafficking in Persons and Anti-Smuggling of Migrants Act should be tightened.
“In Britain, there is a provision for life imprisonment while in Malaysia, the maximum penalty is 10 years’ imprisonment only.
“This appears as if Malaysia is still able to tolerate such activities compared to Britain,” he told reporters after an evening reception with Malaysians here on Monday night.
In the afternoon, Dr Ahmad Zahid, who is on a four-day working visit to Britain, attended a briefing besides holding discussions in London on modern-day slavery, or better known as human trafficking.
The Deputy Prime Minister said, among others, Malaysia would see the suitability of referring to the British experience to reduce the number of those falling victims and becoming modern-day slaves once related laws were tightened.
Dr Ahmad Zahid said that during the briefing, the Malaysian delegation was informed of the approach used by the British government to control and reduce the trafficking of people as forced labour or sex slaves by involving non-governmental organisations in the rehabilitation.
“In Britain, the government engages the NGOs to give comfort to the victims who are undergoing rehabilitation, besides forging cooperation with embassies and consulates so that those intending to enter can be blocked in advance,” he said.
At the reception, Dr Ahmad Zahid reminded Malaysians abroad to be always grateful for having the opportunity to continue their studies outside the country and to protect Malaysia’s good name.
They were also asked to be rational in analysing information received about developments in Malaysia, particularly from the alternative and social media because most of the information were half-truths and not based on journalism ethics.
Almost 200 Malaysian students studying in Britain attended the evening reception.
In another development, Dr Ahmad Zahid said Malaysia was keen to emulate Britain in the management of its National Security Council.