No compromise on race or religious incitement, says deputy comms minister

KUALA LUMPUR: The authorities will not compromise and remain committed to taking stern action against any parties that threaten the country's security, stability or harmony by insulting the royal institution or any race or religion, Parliament was told.

Deputy Communications and Multimedia Minister Eddin Syazlee Shith said the government would continue to improve and update current laws, including the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 (CMA), to ensure they remained relevant and could address issues involving insults to religions, the special position of the Malays and the royal institution.

“Current laws like the Penal Code, under the purview of the police, are among the legal instruments that can be used by the government to address offences and abuse in the form of provocation and insults against any race, religion or the royal institution,” he told Sabri Azit (PAS-Pendang) during Question Time on Wednesday (March 27).

Sabri had asked the Ministry to state the actions taken against those on social media who had allegedly insulted Islam, the special privileges of the Malays, and the royal institution.

Eddin said legal action could also be taken under CMA for offences and abuse on social media, based on public tip-offs and other affected individuals.

“The Ministry remains committed to preserving the free speech rights of all Malaysians based on Article 10 of the Federal Constitution.

“However, as practised in other countries, there is no absolute freedom of speech, and it is based on relevant laws,” he said.