Summary: A compilation of extracts featuring child-rights issues from the reports submitted to the second Universal Periodic Review. There are extracts from the 'National Report', the 'Compilation of UN Information' and the 'Summary of Stakeholder's Information'. Also included is the final report and the list of accepted and rejected recommendations.
Brunei Darussalam - Nineteenth session - 2014
2nd May - 9am - 12.30pm
9. Various legislations have since been introduced, enforced and/or amended to ensure the continued promotion and protection of human rights in the country. These include:
• The Children and Young Persons Act (Cap 219), provides for the protection and rehabilitation of children and the establishment of the Juvenile Courts and Action Teams on Child Protection. The latter has been enumerated for the purposes of co- ordinating locally-based services to families, children and young persons in cases where children or young persons are suspected of being in need of protection. To ensure that children are protected whilst under police custody, this Act prohibits them from being associated with adult offenders. It also ensures the protection of their identity with any court proceedings.
• The Compulsory Religious Education Act (Cap 215), enforced on 1 January 2013, provides for 7 years of compulsory religious education for all Muslim children. The Act requires every parent whose child has attained a compulsory religious school age to ensure his child is enrolled as a pupil in a religious school in that year and remains as such for the duration of the compulsory religious education.
• The Penal Code (Cap 22) was amended in 2012 in order to strengthen the laws to further protect the young and vulnerable from sexual exploitation and also provide prosecutors with a handle to prosecute a wider range of sexual offences. Among the new sexual offences introduced by the amendments are commercial sex, child pornography, prostitution, engaging in sexual activity in the presence of a person under the age of 16, sexual grooming, voyeurism, offences that peruses technology as a medium as well as offences related to the outraging of one's modesty. The new offences of commercial sex with a person under 18 outside Brunei Darussalam (Section 377E) and tour outside Brunei Darussalam for commercial sex with a person under 18 (Section 377F) allow for extra-territorial application on Bruneians who may commit such offences abroad and contributes towards the global fight against child sex tourism.
Commitments and pledges- International
11. In 2011, Brunei Darussalam ratified the Minimum Age Convention, 1973 (C. 138) of the International Labour Organization to ensure the effective abolition of child labour and raise progressively the minimum age for admission to employment or work.
13. On the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict, Brunei Darussalam is amending its Royal Brunei Armed Forces Act 1984 which would thus enable the country to ratify the Optional Protocol. 14. On the Convention on the Rights of the Child, Brunei Darussalam is withdrawing its reservations on paragraphs 1 and 2 of Article 20 relating to the protection of a child without a family, as well as paragraph (a) of Article 21 of the Convention pertaining to the law on adoption.
17. Brunei Darussalam also actively participates in the work and/or activities of the ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children, which was established in April 2010.
21. Brunei Darussalam has received visits from representatives of international bodies relevant to human rights including the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
22. Technical assistance has been given on programmes relating to children such as regulating and monitoring the quality of early childhood education. Trainings for relevant teachers and officers are provided through workshops, seminars and conferences for personnel dealing with early childhood education. These activities are held in cooperation with the Asia-Pacific Regional Network on Early Childhood’s, which plays a potential role in support of policy and advocacy in the region.
23. A number of UNICEF representatives had visited the country and agreed to assist in areas such as implementing national standards on child protection and welfare homes, and the services and provision on child protection in the country.
24. The Ministry of Education, through the technical assistance of UNICEF, has engaged the International Child Resource Exchange Institute from California, U.S.A. A feasibility study on the provision of high quality Early Childhood Care and Education for children aged 3 and 4 is currently on-going. The outcome of the study will cover recommendations in areas such as teacher training and education, and possible models of Early Childhood Care and Education appropriate to the country's cultural and socio- economic background.
The institution of family and safeguarding the rights of vulnerable groups - Children (Recommendations 4, 17, 20, and 21)
35. The 2012 National Statistics indicated that children comprised 33.7 per cent of the country’s population and hence Brunei Darussalam has made numerous efforts, including various legislations to promote and protect their rights. 36. The Government of Brunei Darussalam, through the Community Development Department, continues to carry out its functions in promoting, protecting and safeguarding the rights of children in the country which include counselling, intervention, monthly welfare allowance, public awareness campaigns; programmes on probation and community services for children offenders; and celebrating Universal Children’s Day at the national level.
37. Brunei Darussalam is currently implementing the Plan of Action on Family Institution and Women which also covers children issues which includes the strengthening of parenting skills; promoting moral integrity among school children; propagation of child online protection; and providing residential schooling, home tuition educational subsidies and transportation for children from poor families, In implementing these programmes, Government agencies are strongly supported by NGOs, the corporate sector and all levels of the community.
38. Various awareness activities, such as roadshows and talks, on domestic violence and child abuse have continued to be held throughout the country. Public education campaigns on the rights of the child and the negative consequences of child abuse are constantly conducted through schools, mass media and at the grass roots level by various government agencies and NGOs. Children are also regularly informed and consulted on their rights through regular road shows to schools. Protection and rehabilitation programmes include welfare benefits, which comprise sustenance allowances, education allowances and disability allowances; counselling; family conferencing; regulating and monitoring of child care centres and home shelters.
39. Brunei Darussalam has also introduced the Temporary Foster Care Scheme aimed at giving the children who are in need of protection and care, a placement with a family institution where the children will receive love, guidance, and attention. Proper guidelines are in place to ensure the eligibility of the temporary foster parents.
40. In March 2010, the Juvenile Court was established which is presided over by a Juvenile Court Magistrate that deals with three (3) categories of cases: (i) criminal offences committed by juveniles; (ii) juveniles who are beyond parental control; and (iii) juveniles who are in need of care and protection orders. The introduction of the juvenile justice system has empowered Magistrates with alternative sentencing options which include the making of probation orders, community service orders, and placement in an approved school, home or a detention centre. The Juvenile Court is committed to rehabilitating and reintegrating young offenders back into society in order to preserve and safeguard their future.
41. The Probation and Community Service Unit, under the Department of Community Development, Ministry of Culture, Youth & Sports, assists the Juvenile Court in deciding the appropriateness of youth and adult offenders for probation; supervising probationers; arranging and managing community service; and developing and conducting rehabilitative programmes.
42. Under the provisions of Children and Young Persons Act, Chapter 219, the Action Team on Child Protection was established to oversee cases of child abuse which include corporal punishment. A Standard of Procedure was also developed to investigate cases of child abuse. Awareness campaigns and parenting skills programmes are constantly conducted to educate the public and parents on alternative forms of discipline.
43. Brunei Darussalam submitted its combined second and third periodic reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child in October 2013.
Women (Recommendations 14, 15 and 16)
46. [...] (N)ew regulations recently introduced effectively removed discrimination against women civil servants such that women civil officers now receive the same fringe benefits as men civil servants in the area of housing, educational allowances for children; and 4-yearly travel allowances for the family.
62. The Brunei Darussalam National Service Programme (PKBN) which started with three pilot projects launched in December 2011, is now a full-fledged voluntary programme. It is designed specifically to develop youths, both physically and spiritually, in order to make them more resilient, responsible, and well-disciplined. It focuses on 4 main components, namely: i) Self-Resilience, Nationhood and Religious Component; ii) Physical and Discipline Training Component; iii) Community Service Component; and iv) Entrepreneurship Component.
63. The Programme is seen as a ‘holistic’ self-identity youth development programme, based on the country’s national philosophy of the Malay Islamic Monarchy (MIB). It involves a process of education, learned through ‘experiential learning’ and ‘learning by doing’. The facets of the programme are: non-military training; involvement of all Bruneian citizens and permanent residents both male and female within the age group of 16–21 years old; a multi-disciplinary curriculum and training; and participation of government agencies, private sector, NGOs as well as individuals.
64. Brunei Darussalam celebrates National Youth Day in August every year and a Youth Fund was launched in 2012.
Promoting education for all (Recommendations 18, 19, 25 and 27)
65. Brunei Darussalam continues to emphasise education as a key to the country’s development.
67. Brunei Darussalam also recognises the long-term benefits towards academic achievement by providing high quality care and early childhood education.
68. This five-year Strategic Plan endeavours to develop the fullest potential of a child through high quality education. The Ministry of Education has three (3) areas of focus, namely: (i) teaching and learning excellence; (ii) professionalism and accountability; and (iii) efficiency and innovativeness. Several initiatives have been prioritised in the Plan, namely: (i) the Early Childhood Care and Education; (ii) the development of the Brunei Teachers’ Standards through international best practices; (iii) transformation of Technical and Vocational Education Training including lifelong learning; and (iv) the Info- communication Technology Education Strategic Blueprint initiative (also known as the e- Hijrah). The Blueprint aims to attain higher levels of literacy among students making the country more efficient and maximising the support of teachers by improving their skills and confidence.
69. The Early Childhood Care and Education programmes aim to enhance the holistic development and well-being of young children. Under the programme, the main services provided are: • Health Services (0–5 years old); • Private Child Care Centres (0–3 years old); and • Government (5 years old) and Non-Government (3–5 years old) Pre-school care and education.
71. The e-Hijrah works on attaining higher levels of literacy in students through streamlining and maximising the support of teachers by improving their skills and confidence. This initiative will also strengthen the country's global network of other education systems so that they can contribute to and learn from the global education ecosystem.
74. In January 2012, the country launched an assistance scheme whereby a total of 107 underprivileged students were provided with hostel accommodation to help them attain educational achievement.
Access to health services (Recommendations 24 and 25)
76. Free medical and health care continue to be provided to citizens and includes Maternal and Child Health Services such as vaccination programmes and antenatal screenings.
79. Brunei Darussalam attained the status of ‘Malaria Free’ in 1987 by the World Health Organization (WHO) and since then has continued its surveillance through the Malaria Vigilance and Vector Control Unit under the Ministry of Health. In 2000, Brunei Darussalam was also declared Polio Free and has started its programme on the elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis in February 2013. Since June 2011, steps have also been taken to eliminate Hepatitis B in Brunei Darussalam by carrying out research on the status of Hepatitis B contraction and measles immunity among children.
80. [...] The childhood national immunisation programme (0-5 years) was upgraded with the addition of booster doses to ensure prolonged immunity, in-line with the 66th Session of the World Health Assembly (WHA) recommendation. The school entry immunisation requirement was also implemented to ensure higher population immunity. In essence, the national immunisation programmes has reached above 95% coverage.
83. Under the 9th National Development Plan 2007-2012, the Ministry of Health has implemented projects in upgrading and development of new infrastructures which includes new health centres; [...] a dedicated block for women and children at Raja Isteri Pengiran Anak Saleha (RIPAS) Hospital. [...] More infrastructures are being developed in the coming years including upgrading and expansion of the RIPAS Hospital (and the) Child development Centre.
Trafficking in Persons
92. In early 2012, the Government of Brunei Darussalam enacted several amendments to the Penal Code (Sections 294B and 377F) in order to further curb commercial sexual exploitation among children. The Trafficking and Smuggling of Persons Order 2004 also prohibits both sex and labour trafficking, which carries stringent punishments of up to 30 years’ imprisonment.
Capacity building (Recommendations 9, 10, 12, 29, 30, and 33)
96. Since 1995, Brunei Darussalam has offered scholarships for international students to pursue higher level education in various academic institutions in the country. Nearly 400 scholarships have been granted to students from over 63 countries in Asia, Africa, and European regions, to pursue further studies at Universiti Brunei Darussalam (UBD), Universiti Islam Sultan Sharif Ali (UNISSA), and Institut Teknologi Brunei (ITB).
Cyber security (Recommendation 23)
107. In March 2013, the Child Online Protection National Strategy Framework for Brunei Darussalam was set up, consisting of a sound research base and monitoring system; capacity building for raising awareness; strengthening existing legal measures; international cooperation; and working with relevant industries. In compliance with the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) COP global initiative, the Framework will address the practical and effective measures for tackling children online based on the five (5) pillars of the ITU COP, namely: Legal Measures; Technical & Procedural Measures; Organisational Structures; Capacity Building; and International Cooperation. Awareness Programmes on COP; Cyber Security; and Internet Etiquette have also been conducted in the country.
108. In June 2012, Brunei Darussalam attended the ASEAN Conference on “Working towards a Cyber Pornography and Cyber Prostitution-Free Southeast Asia” held in Manila, Philippines, which aimed to understand the dynamics and realities of cyber pornography and cyber prostitution.
1. While noting the general reservations of the Government of Brunei Darussalam to CRC and CEDAW, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) recommended that the Government review its broad reservations to those treaties, in order to improve its accountability for international obligations, and review national legislation in conformity with the above-mentioned conventions and international obligations.
6. UNESCO noted that the 1959 constitution of Brunei Darussalam, as last amended in 2008, did not guarantee the right to education. It did not contain any provision regarding education or the principle of non-discrimination.
7. UNESCO also noted that the basic legislative framework for education in Brunei Darussalam consisted of the Education (Non-Government Schools) Act (chapter 55), 1984, which was repealed by the Education Order of 31 December, 2003; the Compulsory Education Order, 2007; the Child Care Centre Order, 2006; and the Education (Brunei Board of Examinations) Law, 1984.
8. While noting the efforts of Brunei Darussalam to register births, UNHCR recommended that the Government of Brunei Darussalam continue its outreach programme, under which it made presentations related to birth registration, and evaluate if more areas of the country needed to be covered or more steps taken to ensure access to universal birth registration.
Equality and non-discrimination
9. UNHCR noted that under the Brunei Nationality Act, only fathers could confer their nationality on their children. In that connection, UNHCR recommended that Brunei Darussalam reform the Nationality Act to address the concerns of the Committee on the Rights of the Child regarding equality between women and men in their ability to confer their nationality on their children.
Right to life, liberty and security of the person
10. In its direct request adopted in 2011, the ILO Committee of Experts on the Application of Conventions and Recommendations requested the Government to redouble its efforts to ensure the effective monitoring of the sale and trafficking of children and to provide information on measures taken to strengthen the capacity of immigration officials to combat the trafficking of children. It also requested the Government to provide information on the application of the provisions of the Trafficking and Smuggling of Persons Order prohibiting the sale and trafficking of children including, in particular, statistics on the number and nature of violations reported, investigations, prosecutions, convictions and penalties imposed.
11. In its direct request, the Committee of Experts noted that Brunei Darussalam did not have a proactive system to formally identify victims of trafficking among vulnerable groups, such as foreign workers and foreign women and children in prostitution, and that the Government had not implemented training for its officials on identifying trafficking victims. It also observed that children of migrant workers were at increased risk of becoming victims of sale and trafficking and requested the Government to take effective and time-bound measures to ensure that this group of children were protected from that worst form of child labour.
12. The Committee observed that the use of children under 18 years for prostitution, i.e. by a client, did not seem to be prohibited. Furthermore, it observed that only the procuring and offering of girls under 18 years of age appeared to be prohibited by national legislation. The Committee reminded the Government that article 3 (b) of ILO Convention No. 182 required member States to ensure that the use, procuring or offering of both boys and girls under 18 years of age for prostitution is strictly prohibited. The Committee therefore requested the Government to take the necessary measures to ensure that the use, procuring or offering of both boys and girls under the age of 18 for the purpose of prostitution was prohibited.
13. The Committee also noted that there did not appear to be a provision in national laws specifically prohibiting the use, procuring or offering of a child for the production of pornography or pornographic performances, as required by article 3 b) of Convention No. 182. The Committee requested the Government to indicate the measures taken or envisaged to ensure that the use, procuring or offering of boys and girls under 18 years of age for the production of pornography or pornographic performances was prohibited.
14. Furthermore, the Committee requested the Government to take the necessary measures to ensure that sufficient up-to-date data on the prevalence of the worst forms of child labour in the country is made available, particularly with regard to child trafficking. It also requested the Government to provide that information and any additional available information on the nature, extent and trends of the worst forms of child labour and the number of children protected by the measures giving effect to Convention No. 182. To the extent possible, the information should be disaggregated by age and sex.
Right to work and to just and favourable conditions of work
19. The ILO Committee of Experts reminded the Government that, under article 3 (d) of ILO Convention No. 182, children under 18 years of age should not perform work, which by its nature or the circumstances in which it is carried out, is likely to harm their health, safety or morals and that this applies to both industrial and non-industrial undertakings. The Committee requested the Government to take the necessary measures to develop and adopt a list determining the types of hazardous work prohibited for persons under 18 years of age, in consultation with the organization of employers and workers concerned. In this regard, the Committee also requested the Government to indicate whether the Minister of Labour had declared any industrial undertaking to be an undertaking in which no young person shall be employed.
20. While noting information from the Government that the National Children’s Council, established and officially launched in 2001, is responsible for monitoring the rules and regulations pertaining to children, the Committee requested the Government to provide information on the role of the Council with regard to the prevention and elimination of the worst forms of child labour and on the results achieved.
Right to education
21. UNESCO noted that the right to education was highlighted in the Education Policy, 1992, whereby at least 12 years education is offered for all children: 1 year of pre-school, 6 years of formal primary education, 3 years of lower secondary and 2 years of upper secondary or vocational/technical education.
22. UNESCO recommended that Brunei Darussalam be encouraged to implement awareness-raising projects and activities to combat discriminatory attitudes, promote the right to education for all and further its efforts to promote human rights education and training.
Right to life, liberty and security of the person
1. CRIN stated that in Brunei Darussalam, children may be lawfully sentenced to life imprisonment and corporal punishment for offences committed while under the age of 18. More specifically, CRIN noted that there was no explicit prohibition on life imprisonment for persons under the age of 18 in Brunei Darussalam and children could be sentenced to detention at the pleasure of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang di-Pertuan, an indeterminate sentence that may extend for the rest of a person’s life.
2. CRIN noted that corporal punishment in the form of whipping was lawful as a sentence for males convicted of a criminal offence. For boys below the age of 18, only the High Court is empowered to order the penalty.
3. In this connection, CRIN specified that the Penal Code provided for the sentence of whipping for a wide range of offences. Whipping was also permitted as a criminal penalty under the Children Order 2000, the intoxicating Substances Act 1992, the Arms and Explosives Act 1927 and Rules 1928, the Misuse of Drugs Act 1978, the Public Order Act 1983, the Kidnapping Act 1992 and the Women and Girls Protection Act 1972. CRIN further stated that the Common Gaming Houses Act 1920 contained a specific provision for the whipping of young boys. The Unlawful Carnal Knowledge Act 1938 punished extra-marital carnal knowledge of a girl under 16 by whipping up to 12 strokes of the rattan for a youthful offender.
4. In addition, CRIN noted that persons aged 8 to 17 might be whipped up to 18 strokes under the Criminal Procedure Code. The whipping must be inflicted on the part of the body directed by the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Prime Minister, and, for a youthful offender, with a light rattan “in the way of school discipline”. Whipping should not be imposed on females. A medical officer or hospital assistant must be present and must certify that the offender is fit to receive the punishment.
5. Global Initiative to End All Corporal Punishment of Children (GIEACPC) noted that since the previous review in 2009, there had been no change in the legality of corporal punishment of children: it remains lawful in the home, in schools, in the penal system – as a sentence for crime and as a disciplinary measure in penal institutions – and in alternative care settings.
6. According to GIEACPC, Article 89 of the Penal Code 1951 states that, with certain exceptions, “nothing which is done in good faith for the benefit of a person under 12 years of age by consent, either express or implied, of the guardian or other person having lawful charge of that person, is an offence by reason of any harm which it may cause, or be intended by the doer to cause, or be known by the doer to be likely to cause, to that person”. Article 28 of the Children and Young Persons Act 2006 (in force 2010) punishes child abuse which causes injury, which under article 2 must be “substantial and observable.” As such, GIEACPC noted that the Act did not prohibit all corporal punishment.
7. GIEACPC further noted that corporal punishment was lawful for boys. During the UPR in 2009, the Government stated that corporal punishment had been prohibited in schools since 1984. However, the Education (School Discipline) Regulations 2004, under the Education Act 2003, prohibited corporal punishment for girls but it provided that “corporal punishment of male pupils by a teacher or other member of the staff shall be in accordance with and subject to a directive on corporal punishment issued by the Ministry” and “a record of all punishments imposed or meted out shall be kept confidential in a form approved by the Registrar General”. According to article 6, “the power of inflicting corporal punishment shall not be delegated to any person other than a registered teacher”. The Compulsory Education Act 2007 and the Compulsory Religious Education Act 2012 are silent on the issue.
8. In addition, GIEACPC stated that corporal punishment was explicitly prohibited in child care centres in article 17 of the Child Care Centres Act 2006. But there was no prohibition of corporal punishment in other forms of care.
9. CRIN recommended that Brunei Darussalam: 1) explicitly prohibit sentences of corporal punishment and life imprisonment in Brunei Darussalam, including detention at the Pleasure of His Majesty the Sultan and Yang Di-Pertuan, under all systems of justice and without exception to ensure full compliance with international standards; 2) raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility; and 3) provide disaggregated data about sentences handed down to children by offence committed and date, as well as information about children in detention, including gender, age and length of time spent in pre-trial detention in each case.
10. GIEACPC recommended that legislation be enacted in Brunei Darussalam to explicitly prohibit corporal punishment of children in all settings, including the home, as a matter of priority.
Administration of justice and the rule of law
11. CRIN further noted that the main laws governing juvenile justice are the Penal Code 1952, the Criminal Procedure Code 1951 and the Children and Young Persons Order 2006. In addition, CRIN stated that the Children and Young Persons Order defined a child as those under 14 years of age, a juvenile as aged 7-17 and a young person as 14-17. The Criminal Procedure Code defined a youthful offender as those between 8-17 years of age. The minimum age of criminal responsibility was set at 7.
12. CRIN recommended that Brunei Darussalam: 1) raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility; and 2) provide disaggregated data about sentences handed down to children by offence committed and date, as well as information about children in detention, including gender, age and length of time spent in pre-trial detention in each case.
The following recommendations were accepted:
113.28 Continue and complete the process of ratification of OP-CRC-AC (Burkina Faso);
113.29 Ratify CRC, which it signed in 2008, and submit its outstanding report (Sierra Leone); Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.29: Brunei Darussalam ratified the CRC on 27 December 1995. Furthermore, Brunei Darussalam submitted its combined second and third periodic reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child in October 2013.;
113.39 Review its national legislation and bring into conformity with the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Elimination of all Forms of Discrimination against Women (Albania);
113.40 Strengthen the legislation to ban the use of children under 18 for the purpose of commercial sex, prostitution and pornography (Mexico);
113.82 Strengthen the legislative framework to reflect the provisions of international law on the protection of children (Maldives);
113.93 Continue its policies on improving the rights of the child (Jordan);
113.94 Intensify efforts and strengthen policies and strategies to address the sale and trafficking of persons, especially women and children (Costa Rica);
113.99 Continue providing the full exercise of women and children rights within the framework of the Plan of Action on Family Institution and Women (Kazakhstan);
113.102 Continue the programmes and national plans aimed at empowering youth (Syrian Arab Republic);
113.103 Continue efforts to promote and protect the rights of women and children on all levels (Qatar);
113.104 Continue its endeavour to promote and protect the human rights of children and women (Iran (Islamic Republic of));
113.116 Continue its constructive role and contribution in the promotion and protection of human rights in the region, particularly through established regional frameworks in ASEAN, such as the ASEAN Commission on the Promotion and Protection of the Rights of Women and Children (ACWC) (Myanmar);
113.134 Continue its efforts in safeguarding the rights of women and children, particularly in combating trafficking in persons (Philippines);
113.138 Step up its efforts in the promotion and protection of the rights of children, including continuing its measures to combat violence against children (Afghanistan);
113.139 Strengthen and widen the scope of the awareness campaigns against child abuse, as well as the establishment of the Action Team on Child Protection to oversee cases of abuse, including corporal punishment (Brazil);
113.140 Strengthen the measures adopted to ensure the effective prohibition of prostitution by minors under 18 years, paying particular attention to the prohibition of the use of this type of prostitution or of the offer of it (Spain);
113.141 Implement article 3 (b) of ILO Convention No. 182, which requires States parties to establish strict prohibition of the use, recruitment or offering of a child for prostitution, production of pornography or pornographic performances (Belgium);
113.142 Take further measures to ensure sufficient data on the prevalence of the worst forms of child labour in the country and particularly with regard to child trafficking (Albania);
113.143 Redouble its efforts to ensure effective control in the fight against the sale and trafficking of children, including by raising awareness and by providing agents at the border with the necessary tools to identify victims and vulnerable populations so as to combat trafficking effectively (Belgium);
113.144 Take effective and time-bound measures to ensure that children, with particular attention to children of migrant workers, are protected from trafficking and prostitution (Slovenia);
113.168 Continue to meet the basic needs of vulnerable groups in the country, especially women, children;
113.176 Continue the programmes and national plans to develop education, especially in early childhood (Syrian Arab Republic);
113.183 Continue its efforts in the promotion and protection of children’s rights, including through the implementation of the Plan of Action of Family Institution and Women and public education campaigns on the rights of the child (Indonesia);
113.184 Continue promoting the rights of children, particularly in guaranteeing their access to quality education, so as to ensure that they would be able to enter the workforce with the necessary skills (Malaysia);
113.185 Increase the access of children, women and persons with disabilities to education (Morocco).
The following recommendations were partially accepted:
113.22. Review the reservation to CRC and CEDAW (Sweden); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.12: (See Brunei Darussalam's position to113.1: Brunei Darussalam remains committed to its international obligations. Brunei Darussalam is already party to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW); and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC); and is looking to ratify the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD); and the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of Children in Armed Conflict (OP-CRC-AC).) Furthermore, without prejudice to the generality of CEDAW and CRC, Brunei Darussalam wishes to retain its reservations, as well as any other aspects of CEDAW and CRC. On CRC, Brunei Darussalam maintains its reservation to Article 14, paragraph 3 of Article 20; and paragraph (b)-(e) of Article 21. Notwithstanding this, Brunei Darussalam withdrew its reservations on paragraphs 1 and 2 of Article 20 relating to the protection of a child without a family, as well as paragraph (a) of Article 21 of the Convention pertaining to the law on adoption. On CEDAW, Brunei Darussalam maintains its reservation on Article 9 (2) of the Convention. Procedures are available for children of women citizens married to foreign nationals to be accorded Brunei citizenship through an application process, pursuant to Section 6 of the Brunei Nationality Act. In view that Brunei Darussalam has a policy of single nationality, children of women citizens may either be registered as Brunei nationals or the nationals as that of the father.;
113.23 Consider lifting reservations to articles 14, 20 and 21 of CRC and articles 9 and 29 of CEDAW (Burkina Faso); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.12.;
113.125 Respect the fundamental principle of equality between men and women, in particular by allowing women from Brunei Darussalam to transmit their nationality to their children and by raising the age of marriage for women (France); Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.125: See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.12. In regards to age of marriage for women, although the minimum age of marriage provided under the relevant laws is below 18 years, the laws lay certain conditions before a marriage can be concluded. These conditions are imposed to ensure that any party, who wishes to marry, including those under the age of 18 years, has been fully qualified and ready in all aspects to enter into marriage life.
The following recommendations were rejected:
113.24 Review the broad reservations to CRC and to CEDAW (Portugal); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.12.;
113.25 Withdraw all remaining reservations to CRC and CEDAW (Slovenia); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.12.;
113.27 Withdraw existing reservations to the Convention on the Rights of the Child and the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women (Russian Federation); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.12.;
113.41 Enact legislation to prohibit explicit corporal punishment of children in all settings, including the home, schools and alternative care facilities (Montenegro); Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.41: In practice, all educational institutions are not allowed to carry out any corporal punishment. Furthermore, directives have been reviewed to prohibit such actions in schools. The Action Team on Child Protection (ATOCP) established under the Children and Young Person’s Act oversees cases of child abuse which includes corporal punishment. The Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) on child abuse (which includes corporal punishment) involves many agencies including law enforcement agencies, medical officers and social workers. Awareness campaigns and Parenting Skills programmes are constantly conducted to educate the public and parents on alternative forms of discipline.;
113.74 Increase the age of criminal responsibility, which is now set at 7 years, to conform to international standards (Sierra Leone); Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.74: In practice, cases involving child or young person offenders committing less serious offences are rarely brought to court. In cases where children or young persons are convicted in court, the court may in appropriate cases, instead of imposing sentence of fine or imprisonment, impose alternative sentences such as discharge them after due admonition, deliver them to their parent or guardian or nearest adult relative, release on probation of good conduct or commit to custody in a place of detention.;
113.75 Raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility and prohibit sentences of corporal punishment and life imprisonment for children under the age of 18 (Czech Republic); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.74.;
113.76 Continue its efforts to raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility (Uruguay); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.74.;
113.77 Raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility and explicitly prohibit life imprisonment for persons under the age of 18 (Germany); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.74.;
113.78 Bring into line the definition of minor in all legal domains, especially the penal, and prohibit life sentences and corporal punishment for crimes committed by minors (Mexico); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.74.;
113.131 If Brunei continues to use the death penalty, it should meet at least the minimum international standards on death penalty (ECOSOC resolution 1984/50) and the relevant provisions of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (articles 6 and 14) and the Convention on the Rights of the Child (article 37) (Belgium); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.18: See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.1. To date, the death penalty is still maintained in the laws of Brunei Darussalam. Furthermore, its abolition is not required by international law.;
113.136 Prohibiting corporal punishment in all settings, including in the home (Uruguay); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.41.;
113.137 Ban corporal punishment sentences and life sentences, in particular for children (Costa Rica); See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.137: See Brunei Darussalam's position to 113.41. Children and Young Persons Act (Cap 219) prohibits a child from being sentenced or ordered to be imprisoned for any offence or be committed to prison in default of payment or fine or cost.