PUTRAJAYA, 14 NOVEMBER 2018 - UNICEF is deeply disturbed by the revelations made by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission of alleged cases of sex for grades in the Malaysian education system.
Any sexual abuse against children is a serious violation of their rights. When it is perpetrated by teachers at school, it is also a breach of trust and abuse of power. Such behavior discredits the education system.
Teachers are supposed to be role models and nurture a child’s learning and development not sexually abuse them.
No child should be afraid of going to school.
UNICEF supports the stand of Dr Maszlee, Minister of Education, as sexual abuse against children is a serious offence under the Sexual Offences Against Children Act 2017. Sexual abuse survivors should receive immediate and adequate protection and support services. And students should be able to speak out without fear of repercussions or shame.
UN agencies, civil society organizations and private companies have been working with the Ministry of Education to empower girls and boys with the knowledge and skills to protect themselves from sexual abuse. But obviously more needs to be done.
UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.
For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit www.unicef.org.