Lex; in Breve
The online supplement to our eponymous journal features concise and insightful articles penned by law students from the University of Malaya, as well as guest writers.
Sexual harassment is an unwelcomed behaviour that is offensive, humiliating or intimidating. As the government scrambles to find a solution, what does the future hold for a sexual harassment bill?
The global #MeToo movement as well as the Harvey Weinstein scandal have sparked controversy and a growing awareness on the plight of sexual harassment victims — drawing the local community’s attention to cases closer to home.
In 2018, a specialist doctor from a public hospital in the Klang Valley was dismissed for various counts of sexual harassment counduct towards his female housemen. This case was brought to the attention of the former Health Minister Dzulkefly Ahmad, all the way to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, who had consented to this doctor’s dismissal. Nevertheless, the doctor was not criminally prosecuted and the case was not pursued further.
The following year, radio station BFM 89.9 dealt with several accounts of sexual misconduct by simply dismissing two of their employees in question. In response to such criminal impunity, there was a call by several displeased voices for BFM to lodge a police report on the matter. Sadly, no attempt at a proper criminal prosecution under the criminal justice system has been undertaken.
As the local community looks to the government and lawmakers for answers to these questions, several Parliament members themselves have been caught with incendiary remarks. In 2007, Member of Parliament (MP) Bung Mokhtar made a remark referencing female menstruation to the former female MP of Batu Gajah. He pointed out that she also ‘leaked every month’ in reference to the rain leaking through the Parliament’s roof. A more recent example was a proposal made in the House of Senate by former Senator Mohd Imran Abd Hamid, who was of the view that a law should be put in place to protect men from being seduced into sexual crimes such as rape. This proposal drew ire from several parties, including the former Women, Family and Community Development Deputy Minister Hannah Yeoh, who publicly berated the Senator for issuing such distasteful comments.
Despite the public outrage, the underlying question remains, why has this been allowed to continue?
Cases of sexual harassment in Malaysia have increased without the necessary actions to curb them. The most recent statistics on the reporting of such cases indicates a steady increase from 2013 to 2016. Indeed, several factors to its rise come to light, including: the deeply ingrained patriarchal mindset that has long plagued both the men and women of this country; the privilege and power differentials between men and women on social and workplace status; and the society’s indifference and culture of victim-blaming which is a magnanimous factor to victims’ reluctance in blowing the whistle and opting to suffer in silence instead.
The issue lies in the adequacy of existing legislations to combat cases of sexual harassment in Malaysia. Can current legislations protect victims of sexual harassment not only by penalising the perpetrators, but by providing forms of redress for said victims as well? Furthermore, even if such laws exist, are they available and known to the public? Are they effective in deterring sexual harassment conduct? And are they applicable to all victims of sexual harassment, irrespective of age, gender, location, and social standing? Is there, ultimately, a need for an all-encompassing Sexual Harassment Act in Malaysia?
This article will consider all the issues mentioned above by outlining the scope of sexual harassment, the existing laws pertaining to sexual harassment, the measures that have been taken thus far via the existing laws, and the need for a specific sexual harassment law.
II. SEXUAL HARASSMENT AS AN INFRINGEMENT OF A PRIVATE INDIVIDUAL’S RIGHTS
A person’s dignity, both spiritual and material, is embodied in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 1948. Spiritual dignity refers to the ways in which a person should be treated, whereas material dignity has to do with a particular standard of living, for example, proper housing. Sexual harassment will fall under the former category as an act that disparages a person’s dignity and honour.
In Malaysia, the Federal Constitution recognises ‘life’ as a value which should be treated with utmost respect. The word ‘life’ in Article 5(1) is not only confined to physical existence. It includes the quality of life, such as one’s dignity and honour as provided in Tan Tek Seng v Suruhanjaya Perkhidmatan Pendidikan. In the context of this provision, sexual harassment violates a person’s honour and dignity by objectifying and degrading them, hence infringing their constitutional and private individual rights.
Further, Article 8 of the Federal Constitution grants citizens the right to equality. It thus condemns any form of discrimination against women’s rights to be heard and treated equally, subject to other provisions of the constitution. Therefore, any acts that subject a woman to unreasonable and detrimental treatment more so than others is a form of discrimination, which contravenes this provision. An example of workplace discrimination can be extracted from L v Burton, where a Chinese female working in the Malaysian office of her Hong Kong company was sexually harassed by a senior staff. She was later dismissed from employment following the deterioration of her relationship with the perpetrator for rejecting his advances. The Industrial Court held that the dismissal constituted ‘sex discrimination’ under Hong Kong’s Sex Discrimination Ordinance because she would not have been subjected to the perpetrator’s sexual harassment but for her sex. Similarly here, should a female fall victim to a male employee’s sexual advances, and is later unfairly dismissed from employment, her private individual rights under Article 8 of the Federal Constitution would have been offended.
III. THE EXISTING LOCAL LAW GOVERNING SEXUAL HARASSMENT CASES
The only definition of sexual harassment under Malaysian laws can be found in our Employment Act. It defines sexual harassment as ‘any unwanted conduct of a sexual nature, whether verbal, non-verbal, visual, gestural or physical, directed at a person which is offensive or humiliating or is a threat to his well-being, arising out of and in the course of his employment.’ Unsurprisingly, it refers to sexual harassment conduct that occurs only in the workplace. Nevertheless, the first part of the definition is still adequate in outlining the general scope of sexual harassment.
A. Penal Code
In the Penal Code, the four main sections that govern the crime of sexual harassment are ss.354, 355, 375 and 509. S.354 lays out the punishment for assault or use of criminal force to a person with intent to outrage modesty; S.355 provides for assault or criminal force to a person with intent to dishonour a person, unless on grave provocation; S.375 provides for rape; and S.509 provides for word or gesture intended to insult the modesty of another person.
Besides preserving public morality and decency among members of society, ss.354 and 355 primarily aim to protect and preserve the dignity of a person from indecent assault. For example, relevant to S.355 is the notion that an intention to dishonour denotes an intention to disrespect one’s dignity and reputation. S.355 will non-exhaustively include acts such as unnecessary skin contact, grabbing, kissing, sending obscene and inappropriate images via email, SMS or any personal messaging platform, as well as persistent and unwanted phone calls. On the other hand, S.375 deals with the more serious offence of rape, which imposes the heaviest punishment amongst the aforementioned sections.
It must be noted that the chief aim of the above sections is to protect victims of sexual assault. Therefore, the principal law governing sexual harassment is S.509, which provides:
‘whoever intending to insult the modesty of any person, utters any word, makes any gestures or exhibits any object, intending that such words or sound shall be heard, or that such gestures or objects shall be seen by such person as intruding upon the privacy of such person shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to five years or with fine, or with both.’
As envisioned by this provision, any person with the intention to insult the modesty and chastity of a person will be liable. In retrospect, the Courts have gravitated towards applying this provision when dealing with cases of sexual harassment as evinced by precedents.
Nevertheless, a victim of sexual harassment can still bring an action under the aforementioned provisions. As of now, the courts will turn to the Penal Code for general sexual harassment cases. The question is whether these provisions are adequate and/or sustainable, and whether there is a need for a specific Act tailored to the needs of sexual harassment victims and alleged perpetrators alike.
1. Penal Code: The shoe that fits?
Scholars have opined that criminal law is less suitable to tackle the subtle instances of sexual harassment and is more tailored towards dealing with the overt and more physical forms of sexual assault and violence. The provisions under the Penal Code do not protect victims of workplace sexual harassment as well as they do to, for instance, victims of harassment on the streets. For example, a mere fine against workplace harassers is not sufficient to protect the victims. If the perpetrators are allowed to remain as employees of the company, the complainants would have to spend their days in discomfort and fear of retaliation by their perpetrator. More often than not, victims are the ones who will be pressured to leave the company to avoid stigmatisation by their colleagues and to ensure their safety and well-being.
In pursuing criminal actions, once a complaint has been made, the responsibility of handling the case usually lies in the hands of the prosecutor. The concern here is that prosecutors may be unfamiliar or insensitive to the issues surrounding sexual harassment. The criminal procedures for the case may also be unaccommodating due to its openness and lack of confidentiality. They may cause victims to feel uncomfortable, causing them to drop their action against their perpetrators.
Furthermore, rights group All Women’s Action Society (AWAM) has alleged in a press statement released on 3 July 2019 that several female sexual harassment victims were laughed at by the police officers when attempting to file a report. The police officers also failed to take action based on the report, as they claimed it had no criminal elements. Not only did this constitute a breach of S.3(3) of the Police Act 1967 to file and investigate a complaint on the part of the police, it further trivialised and stigmatised the reporting of sexual harassment cases in Malaysia. According to a study conducted by the Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO), there is a huge dip in the number of reported cases from 338 cases in 2016 to 267 cases the very next year which is no doubt an adverse result of the stigma surrounding the reporting of cases.
In addition, there is no avenue to hold an employer vicariously liable for their lack of cooperation in handling the issue. As punishments upon sexual harassers are for deterrent effects, it is paramount that ‘enablers’ such as employers who turn a blind eye towards unwanted sexual conduct in their workplace as well as passersby in the streets be punished accordingly. In the Industrial Court case of Sitt Tatt Berhad v Flora a/p Gnanapragasam, which was later affirmed by the High Court of Kuala Lumpur, the learned Chairman addressed the duties of the Senior Manager and Executive Director of the company in relation to the claimant’s claims of sexual harassment and failure to lodge a police report in the following excerpt:
‘Does the law require the claimant in such a situation to lodge a report to the police? If it is, what then are the functions of Desmond Yeap and Nik Murad as Senior Management Officers of the company or both the claimant and Sivananda. The Court finds it is not the claimant who is guilty of any dereliction but these two officers who were guilty of dereliction of their duties in not taking any remedial measures. The facts showed they had connived and condoned the acts of Sivananda.’
It is also worth mentioning that the burden of proof for criminal cases is beyond reasonable doubt, which is harder to prove as compared to the civil burden of balance of probabilities, bearing in mind that there are little to no witnesses in most sexual harassment cases. However, as mentioned in Jennico Associates Sdn Bhd v Lilian Therera De Costa, the burden to prove sexual harassment cases, as opposed to cases of a normal criminal sexual charge, is on the balance of probabilities. The onus is on the complainant to prove, on balance of probability, that the conduct of the perpetrator amounts to sexual harassment.
Criminal prosecution is the ideal form of liability for its deterrent effect and is the least burdensome avenue for the complainants as the case is passed on to the public prosecutors. However, there are undoubtedly many faults in the scope and implementation of the law itself. Considering current circumstances, the question remains — whether criminal law under the Penal Code is sufficient to ensure a smooth and effective prosecution of all sexual harassment perpetrators, and if not, whether these issues can be alleviated by the formation of a separate Sexual Harassment Act.
B. Employment Act 1995
The Employment Act, Part XVA legislates mandatory enquiry by the employer regarding any sexual harassment allegations or complaints received. It also imposes a duty to take appropriate measures to end such harassment.
However, the reporting mechanism is lacking in several aspects. According to Betty Yeoh, AWAM’s training advisor in 2015, the current reality — despite the express provisions — is that employers hold too much power in deciding to open an enquiry. Additionally, employers bear no obligation to put in place protective measures for the victim during the investigation of the complaint. 
1. Is it enough?
In short, the Employment Act provides the timeline for employers to act upon a complaint of sexual harassment, yet does not provide the process or method of handling such complaints. For example, S.81B of the Employment Act provides a 30-day period within which employers must investigate a sexual harassment case, but it does not lay out the guidelines to carry out the investigations. As such, employers are given free rein to dictate the process of investigating and handling of the complaints. Regrettably, there is no consistency in the standard operating procedure of companies and this makes it more difficult to keep track of whether such standard operating procedures adhere to the rules of natural justice.
In the event that the complaint is ignored or the complainant is dissatisfied with the outcome, S.81D of the Act allows the complainant to file a complaint to the Director General of Labour. The Director General may direct the employer to re-inquire into the complaint upon assessment.
To ensure employers’ inquiries into sexual harassment complaints, S.81F of the Employment Act makes it an offence with a liability of fine not exceeding ten thousand ringgit if any employer fails to: (a) inquire into complaints of the refusal; (b) inform the complainant of the refusal and the reasons for the refusal; (c) inquire into complaints of sexual harassment when directed to do so by the Director General; or (d) submit a report of inquiry into sexual harassment to the Director General.
Once an act of sexual harassment is proven, the employer may take disciplinary action against the perpetrator, which may include dismissal. Nevertheless, the Act is silent on the criminal liability of the perpetrator. It also imposes no duty upon the employer to take certain disciplinary measures that are proportional to the best interests of the victim.
The onus here is on the victim to pursue a proper investigation and acknowledgement of their complaints. Most of the time, employers, or the Human Resource (HR) Department refuse to entertain complaints of sexual harassment. Afterall, reactions such as denial of the existence of sexual misconduct, dismissing the seriousness of the offence, and blaming the victim are not unheard of in workplace settings.
According to a ‘Sexual Harassment in The Workplace’ survey conducted by Speak Up in 2017, most victims of unwanted sexual conduct do not report their cases due to the ambiguous, or worse, lack of policies to deal with sexual harassment cases in their companies. As a result, victims become confused as to the procedures of reporting such cases. The problem worsens because the HR Department is not trained to deal with incidences of sexual harassment, consequently feeling justified in ignoring the complaints altogether.
Additionally, there is the issue of ‘power dynamics’ in workplace, which is a cultural problem faced by Malaysia to this day. Under Hofstede’s Power Distance Index — an index developed to measure the distribution of power between individuals in a business, culture or nation — Malaysia scored highest, topping countries all over the world. This means that Malaysia has the biggest power distance between employees and employers, causing a high level of workplace subservience. According to Animah Kosai, the founder of Speak Up, employees are unable to challenge their seniors, even when they know their seniors are in the wrong. More often than not, victims of sexual harassment are too afraid to stand up to their attackers — especially when the consequence could be losing chances of promotion or losing their job altogether. Similarly, HR officers share the same plight in workplace subservience which often results in the complaints of sexual harassment being buried or deferred to protect themselves.
a) Venturing outside the workplace
Regardless of the overwhelming number of sexual harassment incidences in the workplace, it is also important to acknowledge the existence of sexual harassment outside its realm. This includes sexual harassment committed by teachers, professors, trainers or any person who has authority, influence or moral ascendency over another person.
On 12 February 2019, a former consultant psychiatrist at Thomson Hospital Kota Damansara was charged under S.509 of the Penal Code for allegedly insulting the modesty of a former patient and rape victim using sexually-charged words. According to the charge that was read out, the words were: ‘Were you a virgin, how did it feel, was his penis big, did it hurt...Sex is supposed to be great, sex is good, sex feels and everyone should have a lot of sex.’
Before that, the hospital conducted an inquiry which was consequent to an online complaint regarding the alleged sexual harassment. As a result, the consultant psychiatrist’s services were terminated and the case was reported to the police.
With its current definitions under Malaysian law, the offence of sexual harassment does not directly apply to this case. Its definitions are set out only in Acts and Codes of Practice related to sexual harassment in the workplace, such as the Code of Practice on the Prevention and Eradication of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace 1999 and The Public Service Department Circular 2018. It is crucial to note that there is no formal acknowledgement of a case of sexual harassment in the Penal Code.
It is reasons such as this, and cases such as these, that call for an urgent need for a comprehensive Sexual Harassment Act. Victims of sexual harassment, regardless of setting or social standing, should be given access to a justice system that allows them to seek redress or justice when acts of injustice have been committed against them.
C. A Civil Suit Under The Tort of Assault
In 2016, the landmark decision of Mohd Ridzwan bin Abdul Razak v Asmah bt Hj Mohd Nor finally allowed victims of sexual harassment to sue their perpetrators under the tort of sexual harassment. In this case, Asmah bt Hj Mohd Nor alleged that Mohd Ridzwan bin Abdul Razak had sexually harassed her through the use of vulgar and inappropriate speech. She filed a complaint with their employer and a committee was set up to investigate the matter. The evidence was found insufficient for a disciplinary action, but it nevertheless resulted in a non-renewal of Mohd Ridzwan’s work contract. Ironically, Mohd Ridzwan sued Asmah in court for defamation to which she countersued and ended up with a ruling in the Federal Court that awarded her RM100,000 in general damages and RM20,000 in aggravated and exemplary damages.
In this case, the court defined sexual harassment as:
‘…unwelcome, taking the form of verbal and even physical, which include sexual innuendos, comments and remarks, suggestive, obscene or insulting sounds, implied sexual threats, leering, ogling, displaying offensive pictures, making obscene gestures etc. These overtures all share similar traits, in that they all have the air of seediness and cause disturbance or annoyance to the victim (short of a recognised psychiatric illness or physical harm)’.
This case marks the recognition of the tort of sexual harassment in the Malaysian Legal System and is definitely a reason to rejoice. The consequences not only include allowing victims to claim for civil remedies, but also changes the way courts deal with offenders and victims of sexual harassment.
However, the development of such tort is still in its infancy and remains ambiguous to victims of sexual harassment, as the majority of them who are not exposed to the legal field would be unaware of such a redress. Only time will tell if the existence of this tort is accessible, and therefore beneficial to victims of sexual harassment, or whether it is still in the best interests of the country to pass a standalone Sexual Harassment Bill.
IV. A COMPREHENSIVE SEXUAL HARASSMENT BILL IN MALAYSIA
A. Modelling the Indian Law: Fitting a Square Peg into a Round Hole?
Before the case of Vishaka v State of Rajasthan, the laws governing sexual harassment in the state of India were limited to the provisions in the Indian Penal Code, some of which were in pari materia with the Malaysian Penal Code, save for the fact that the provisions only referred to females as victims and excluded males. The case of Vishaka acknowledged the legislative inadequacy on the part of the government and defined sexual harassment in the context of the workplace. It sparked a nationwide discourse on the issues of sexual harassment and its prevalence, and in 2010, a Bill was introduced. In the same year, the Sexual Harassment of Women at Workplace (Prevention, Prohibition and Re-dressal) Act, also known as the POSH Act, was gazetted.
Several commendations of the POSH Act include the fact that its jurisdiction extends to the whole of India and defines an act of sexual harassment to encompass not only employees of a workplace, but also customers or clients who are sexually harassed at the vicinity of the workplace as well.
Unfortunately, in order for a woman to claim protection under this Act, the incident must have occurred at a workplace. Apart from that, the Act is not intended to be a gender-neutral legislation and does not apply to males. According to Women’s Aid Organisation Malaysia, as of 2017, 15% of reported sexual harassment victims were male. Though the number may not be of a significant percentage in comparison to female victims, it is still a number that must be dealt with and protected under legislation.
Although India’s sexual harassment laws began at a similar point with Malaysia’s current situation, it is Malaysia’s intent and hope, as reflected by advocates and NGOs alike, to trudge down the path that will end in a comprehensive sexual harassment Act that will encompass not only employed and unemployed persons, but an Act that is blind to the sex, gender, social standing, and etc of the persons who seek protection under it.
B. Baby Steps in the Right Direction
Malaysia is not yet without hope. For years, numerous activists and NGOs have been looking for solutions to the prevailing issue of sexual harassment in the country.
The Joint Action Group for Gender Equality (JAG) — which comprises of the Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO), the All Women’s Action Society (AWAM), and the Women’s Centre for Change (WCC) — has been spearheading campaigns for a standalone sexual harassment law in Malaysia since the late 1900s. They have also been working on a proposed sexual harassment legislation that was submitted in 2001, and recently, once more on an updated version in October 2019 to be reviewed and hopefully, be presented as a bill in Parliament.
Based on the progress of a Sexual Harassment Bill, the JAG has also published a statement that highlighted 3 demands, namely: a specific timeline for the Sexual Harassment Bill to be tabled; a Sexual Harassment Bill that consists of a clear definition of sexual harassment based on international best practice, minimum standards and oversight mechanisms of organisational obligations, civil standards and procedures to handle sexual harassment cases; as well as proposed changes to the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC) that would render court process more sensitive to survivors of sexual offences.
Although it has been almost 9 years since a proposed Sexual Harassment Bill was received, said Bill has yet to be tabled in Parliament. Initially, it was scheduled to be tabled in March 2019, however, as explained by the former Deputy Women, Family and Community Development Minister Hannah Yeoh, the results of a feasibility study are still being scrutinised. Thereafter, former Minister Hannah Yeoh resolved that the Bill will be tabled in December 2019, which also did not take place.  The most recent update regarding the tabling of the Bill in Parliament was proposed to take place in March 2020, according to the former Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail.  Unfortunately, the progress on the tabling of the Bill remains unclear due to the sudden change in Government earlier this March and the surge of the Covid-19 pandemic, both of which may affect the Bill’s trajectory. Despite current uncontrolled events, let us hope that this Bill for a standalone Sexual Harassment Act will soon be tabled in Parliament.
A good sexual harassment law should not be exclusive to work-related sexual harassment incidences. It should accord protection to persons from all walks of life who are faced with unwelcomed and inappropriate sexual remarks or acts.
Despite the existence of fierce advocates for sexual harassment laws, it is noteworthy that the inadequacy of our legislation is not the only problem in which Malaysia is currently facing — the issue of its implementation should also be considered. Although it is agreed that current legislation has its limitations and that a comprehensive sexual harassment bill is the ideal solution to the issue of sexual harassment that plagues our schools, workplaces, and streets, there are existing avenues in which sexual harassment victims can resort to in order to obtain justice. It falls on the government to spread awareness and information to the public on these avenues and the steps that can be taken to claim their rights if they have been sexually harassed.
Although we understand the government’s role in pushing for proper implementation, the author believes that we should not rest on our laurels. Advocates and NGOs alike are commended for taking a stand and pushing for better laws to cater to the issue of sexual harassment — an issue that requires urgent attention.
For a better perspective, let us ponder on the following excerpt from the Keynote Address of YB Dato’ Lim Ah Lek, the former Minister of Human Resources, Malaysia at the official opening of the National Workshop on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace on 1 March 1999, in Kuala Lumpur:
‘Sexual harassment is one of the most offensive and demeaning experiences an employee can suffer. For the victims, it often produces feelings of revulsion, disgust, anger, and helplessness. It damages the victim's health. It results in emotional and physical stress and stress-related illnesses. Victims may experience severe emotional trauma, anxiety, nervousness, depression and feelings of low self-esteem.
Sexual harassment adversely affects employee morale and job performance. It reduces productivity and increases the rate of sick leave and absenteeism among affected employees. Moreover, many female employees who face sexual harassment choose to resign from their jobs rather than fight or endure the offensive conditions. This results in a higher rate of employee turnover with all the associated costs in training and lost production. The greatest danger of sexual harassment is that when it goes unchecked it can spread throughout an organization like an infectious disease.
By requiring a person to exchange sexual favours for economic survival, sexual harassment denigrates the victims and relegates them to a second-class status in the workplace. Viewed from this angle, sexual harassment is a form of gender discrimination which goes against the principle of equality of treatment in employment between the genders. Therefore, it inhibits the growth of a caring and just society. It also undermines the policy of the government to increase participation rate of women in the labour force.
There are many other adverse consequences of sexual harassment in the workplace, but what I have mentioned earlier would suffice to show the potential harm it could bring about. More and more developed and developing countries have embarked on specific national programmes aimed at preventing and eradicating sexual harassment in the workplace. Malaysia needs to have such national programmes to ensure that our workplaces are free from offensive and intimidating environments caused by the spread sexual harassment.’
Written by Ameerah Nasri, a third year law student of University of Malaya.
Edited by Tan Jia Shen and Zafirah Jaya.
Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Malaya Law Review, and the institution it is affliated with.
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 Ashgar Ali Ali Muhammad and Farheen Baig Sardar Baig, “Sexual Harassment and Gender Discrimination”  3 MLJ lxi, at 2.
 Federal Constitution, Article 5.
 Tan Tek Seng v Suruhanjaya Perkhidmatan Pendidikan  1 MLJ 261, at 289.
 Yahya Talla v Petroliam Nasional Berhad  ILJU 171.
 Federal Constitution, Article 8.
 See footnote 9 above.
 L v Burton  1 ILJ 394.
 Employment Act 1955 (Act 265).
 Penal Code (Act 574).
 Muzaffar Syah B Mallow, “The Criminal Law Approach on the Issue of Sexual Harassment”  1 MLJ cxi, at 5.
 See footnote 29 above at 6.
 Punishment for rape provided for under s.376(1) which is an imprisonment of up to 20 years and whipping as compared to s.354 which imposes imprisonment of up to 10 years with fine or whipping; s.355 which imposes imprisonment of up to 2 years with or without fine; and s.509 which imposes imprisonment of up to 5 years with or without fine.
 Ho Kean v Kong Lai Soo  2 MLJ 63; Abu Hassan bin Abd Jamal v Public Prosecutor  MLJU 223; Maslinda bt Ishak v Mohd Tahir bin Osman  6 MLJ 826; Mohd Hanafi bin Ramly v Public Prosecutor (No 2)  3 MLJ 186.
 See footnote 29 above at 6.
 See footnote 29 above at 6.
 AWAM Press Statement “Attitude Towards Sexual Harassment May Be Enabling Perpetrators”, 3 July 2019, 9 February 2020 < https://www.awam.org.my/2019/07/03/attitude-towards-sexual-harassment-may-be-enabling-perpetrators/>.
 Police Act 1967 (Act 344).
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 Sitt Tatt Berhad v Flora a/p Gnanapragasam  ILJU 39.
 Jennico Associates Sdn Bhd v Lilian Therera De Costa  3 CLJ 583 (HC).
 Ashgar Ali Mohamed, “Sexual Harassment in the Workplace: The Law and Practice in Malaysia”  1 MLJ xlix, at 8.
 Employment Act 1955 (Act 265).
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 Employment Act 1955 (Act 265).
 The Director General of Labour is appointed by the Yang di-Pertuan Agong as per s.3(1) of the Employment Act 1955.
 Speak Up is a movement aimed at encouraging a corporate culture of openness to allow people to raise issues of concern without fear, <https://speakupatwork.com>.
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 Mohd Ridzwan bin Abdul Razak v Asmah bt Hj Mohd Nor  4 MLJ 282.
 See footnote 45 above at 297.
 Vishaka v State of Rajasthan (1997) 6 SCC 241.
 Such as s.354 of Penal Code on outraging the modesty of a person and s.509 of Penal Code on insulting the modesty of a person.
 Nishith Desai Associates, India’s Law on Prevention of Sexual Harassment at The Workplace, October 2018, 10 November 2019 <http://www.nishithdesai.com/fileadmin/user_upload/pdfs/Research%20Papers/Prevention_of_Sexual_Harassment_at_Workplace.pdf>.
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 Excerpts from the Keynote Address of YB Dato’ Lim Ah Lek, Minister of Human Resources, Malaysia at the official opening of the National Workshop on Sexual Harassment in the Workplace on 1 March 1999 at Kuala Lumpur, My Labour Law: Malaysian Labour Laws, 8 November 2019 <http://www.mylabourlaw.net/quick-guides/36-sexual-harassment.php>.