The Straits Times
Published on Nov 27, 2012

Malaysia bans sexist remarks in parliament, violators face reprimand, suspension


KUALA LUMPUR (AFP) - Malaysian lawmakers on Tuesday approved a ban on sexist remarks in parliament after a number of cases in which male Members of Parliament (MPs) in the mostly Muslim country have drawn anger with their comments on the floor.

The amendment to the rules of conduct in the Dewan Rakyat, or lower house of parliament, bars lawmakers from making "a sexist remark", opposition lawmaker Fong Po Kuan said, with violators facing a reprimand or even suspension.

"It's good that it's provided expressly now so all MPs take it seriously," she said. "It's unacceptable. No circumstances can justify sexist comments."

Several Malaysian MPs have sparked controversy in the past with comments in parliament viewed as insulting to women.