About this segment: Person of the Month is an initiative by the University of Malaya Law Review which aims to feature a prominent member of the University of Malaya's Law Faculty towards the end of each month. The purpose of this segment is twofold. Firstly, to give due recognition to the contributions of our student leaders and secondly, so that their achievements might inspire other members of the faculty towards greater successes.
Ng Seng Yi, a final year law student in the Faculty of Law, University of Malaya
Ng Seng Yi or better known as Seng Yi is currently a final year student from Kuala Lumpur. He is well known for his leadership and charismatic presence in the faculty. Studying in this faculty has always been his dream since he was a child, hence he makes sure that his four years of journey in the faculty sails according to plan.
Seng Yi was the Law Society President 2016/2017, Students Representative Council 2015/2016, the Vice-Director of LawNite 2015/2016 and the Vice-Director of A day of Light 2015/2016. Outside the campus, he is also the National University Student Liaison Officer of Malaysia-China Legal Corporation Society, and he was part of the NTV7 & 8TV Student Newscaster Programme and a volunteer for National Human Rights Society (HAKAM). When asked about his life as the President of Law Society, he mentioned that it was bustling, but on the bright side, he matured along the way, and became more diplomatic.
The 5th Constitutional Law Lecture Series: Constitution and the Protection of Marginalised Minority in Malaysia
On 28th September 2017, the 5th Constitutional Law Lecture, as part of the Constitutional Law Lecture Series, was held at the Tun Mohamed Suffian Auditorium, Faculty of Law, University of Malaya. It was an honour to have an address given by the highly-esteemed guest speaker, Dato’ Seri Mohd Hishamudin Yunus, the former Court of Appeal Judge, on the topic of ‘Constitution and the Protection of Marginalised Minority.’
The Lecture was held at Tun Mohamed Suffian Auditorium in the Faculty of Law, University of Malaya
With over 100 ethnic groups, Malaysia prides herself as a melting pot for people of different races, religions, cultures, and traditions to prosper. To preserve this hard-earned harmony, the Federal Constitution, being the supreme law of the State, enshrines equal rights to be enjoyed by every citizen by virtue of Article 8 of the Federal Constitu mktion. However, Malaysia still cannot escape from the concerns regarding the violations of fundamental liberties and rights of the minorities.
Dato' Seri began the lecture by acknowledging the plethora of minority groups in Malaysia before shifting the focus of the lecture to the local aborigines. He defined, and distinguished the aborigines in Malaysia into two categories; the aborigines from the Peninsular Malaysia (Orang Asli), and the natives of Sabah and Sarawak. The definition is stipulated under Article 160 of the Federal Constitution, and Section 3 of the Aboriginal Peoples Act 1954. These groups of aborigines have fundamental rights like every other majority group in the country as their rights are also guaranteed, and protected under the Constitution by virtue of Article 8.
However, due to the fast-changing society fuelled by sophisticated technologies, the vulnerable aboriginal communities have their identities robbed, their culture laughed upon, and are considered as primitive by the mainstream population. In fact, they have been discriminated against long ago through the use of the derogatory term ‘sakai’ by the Malays, who claimed themselves to be superior over the Orang Asli.