KUALA LUMPUR – June 3, 2020: A lawyer has proposed for caning to be considered as the harsher punishment for drunk driving which may soon be introduced by the government.
Fatihah Jamhari, who is a member of International Women’s Alliance for Family Institution and Quality Education (Wafiq) made the suggestion while expressing her support for the announcement by Transport Minister Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong that the punitive laws against drunk drivers would be amended.
Wee said “it is for sure” that the punishment for drunk driving will be increased in order to serve as a lesson and to tackle the issue.
He made the announcement after chairing a special meeting to discuss amendments to Section 41 to 45 of the Road Transport Act on Monday, which govern punishment for those found driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
The move to amend the laws followed a public outcry over several recent fatal road crashes involving suspected drunk drivers.
Fatihah, who is Wafiq’s head of legal and human right bureau said caning should be included as a punishment under the proposed amendments alongside longer jail-time and heftier fines.
“Currently, under Section 43 and 44 of the Road Transport Act, the punishment for drunk driving are only between three and five years imprisonment or between RM8,000 and RM20,000 fine or the offender’s license being barred for five years.
“My proposal is to increase the punishment for drink driving to at least between five and 10 years jail time, between RM10,000 and RM20,000 fine, license barred for life and whipping,” she said.
Besides that, she also proposed for the permitted alcohol blood content limit of drivers be reduced from the current 80mg per 100ml to only 50mg per 100ml as recommended by the World Health Organization’s (WHO).
According to WHO, less than half of the countries in the world have laws against drunk-driving which are based on its recommendation,
However, many countries are more strict on the alcohol blood content limit for driver such as in Japan (30mg per 100ml), Sweden (20mg per 100ml), Australia (50mg per 100ml), China (20mg per 100ml)