Despite May announcement, Pastor Koh’s family say still no word on taskforce


  • Nation
  • Monday, 10 Jun 2019

PETALING JAYA: The family of the missing Pastor Raymond Koh say they are in the dark over a government taskforce that is supposed to investigate his and Amri Che Mat’s enforced disappearances.

Susanna Koh, the wife of Pastor Koh, said that they had not heard directly from Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin following his announcement on May 23 that a special taskforce would be formed to look into the findings by the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) on the disappearances.

Suhakam concluded that the police were likely behind the disappearance of activist Amri and Pastor Koh.

Susanna said there had been no formal statement by Muhyiddin and, therefore, they did not know the taskforce’s terms of reference, composition or powers.

“We can only say what we hope for.

“We hope the taskforce will ‘reopen and re-investigate’ these enforced disappearances and not merely ‘meneliti laporan itu’ (study the report) as reported by some media,” she said in a statement Monday (June 10).

She said she hoped the taskforce members would be announced soon and that the people named would not only include unbiased serving officers in the police force, but also members of statutory bodies like the Attorney General’s Chambers, the Bar Council and Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC), as well as NGO representatives who closely monitored the Suhakam inquiry.

“We hope a time-frame will be specified for the work to be completed and that it will include reporting to the families and to Suhakam at regular intervals on the progress as recommended by the Suhakam panel of inquiry,” Susanna said.

She expressed hope that the taskforce would have access to all evidence and intelligence collected by the police, including investigation diaries, intelligence reports, investigation papers and CCTV footage not tendered by the police during the Suhakam inquiry.

She also hopes that the “report on the findings of the taskforce’s investigation will be made available to the public as soon as possible,” as recommended by the Suhakam panel of inquiry.

“We appreciate Tan Sri Muhyiddin for publicly announcing that the reports will be treated seriously.

“However, we remain distressed that though 69 days have passed since Suhakam published its reports, the taskforce has not begun its work.

“It is now over 847 days since the Raymond was disappeared and over 928 days since Amri was disappeared.

“We hope it will not be many more days before Raymond and Amri are located and the perpetrators of the crimes against them are tried,” she said.

Amri, the co-founder of non-governmental organisation Perlis Hope, went missing on Nov 24, 2016, after leaving his home in Kangar in an SUV at about 11.30pm.

Pastor Koh, who founded the NGO Harapan Komuniti, was believed to have been abducted in broad daylight by a group of men along Jalan SS4B/10 in Petaling Jaya on Feb 13, 2017, while on his way to a friend's house.