KUALA LUMPUR, March 8 — The Home Ministry admitted that there was an element of negligence and system weakness in the mistaken identity of a prisoner who died at Sungai Buloh Hospital, on March 3.
Its Minister, Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, said that, following the incident, his ministry would set up an inquiry board committee immediately to investigate the matter.
“There can’t be any compromise on the aspect of negligence, we will always take steps in improving this identification system,” he said when winding up the debate on the Supply Bill 2023 at the policy level in the Dewan Rakyat, today.
In the incident, a family, which was preparing the funeral rites for their son’s body, was surprised when they were informed that their son was still alive by Sungai Buloh Prison.
The incident caused the victim’s family to be dissatisfied with the Prison Department over a serious mix-up, before lodging a police report at the Jinjang police station on March 4.
Saifuddin Nasution also said that his ministry is ready to pay compensation for the expenses incurred by the family, which is estimated to amount to RM20,000, within 48 hours.
Meanwhile, touching on the issue of exemption given to UMNO according to Section 70 of the Societies Act 1966, Saifuddin said that the Registrar of Societies (RoS) and ministers are subject to the Societies Act 1966.
He said that the law governs the essential duties of RoS, which is to ensure that any organisation complies with matters in its laws, and protects the interests of its members.
“Section 70 of the act specifically gives the minister the power to make a number of exceptions, and the decision I made was directed to the exception of compliance with section 13 of the same law,” he said.
Saifuddin Nasution said that if there are any dissatisfied parties feeling that the minister exceeded the limits of his authority, they can take the issue to court.
“Before I gave the relevant exemption, I had obtained views from the relevant parties,” he said.
Yesterday, Saifuddin Nasution, in a statement, said that Home Ministry had granted an exemption to UMNO from complying with Section 13(1)(c)(iv) of the Societies Act 1966, for the resolution barring contests for its top two posts in the upcoming party elections.