KUALA LUMPUR: There are many different opinions that need to be looked at before amendments are made to the National Security Council (Amendment) Bill 2019, says Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
"We found that there were different feedback, and the law needs to be looked at again for us to include the ideas that have been passed to us," said the Prime Minister to reporters during a press conference at the parliament lobby on Thursday (July 11).
He made the comment when asked why the Bill was withdrawn from the Dewan Rakyat on Wednesday (July 10).
Asked when the amended Bill would be tabled, Dr Mahathir said: "I don't dare to guarantee (when), but it will be as soon as possible."
The Bill was first tabled on April 9, but was withdrawn by Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Hanipa Maidin.
The amendments, among other things, would see the power to declare security zones be transferred from the Prime Minister to the Agong on the advice of the NSC.
Meanwhile, when asked about the Sedition Act, Dr Mahathir said the government was still in the midst of drafting a new law to replace the archaic Act.
"Firstly, we will withdraw the Act for a new one. We are in the process of rearranging (menyusun semula)," he added.
Asked how soon, Dr Mahathir said, "As soon as possible".
Preacher Wan Ji Wan Husin was given an additional one-year sentence, after he was found guilty under the Sedition Act for remarks made about the Sultan of Selangor in Facebook posts in 20112.
He was initially sentenced to nine months in jail by the Sessions Court in April 2018, but this was extended to one year by the Shah Alam High Court on Tuesday (July 10), when Wan Ji appealed his conviction and sentence.
Meanwhile at the parliament lobby, a non-governmental organisation called Pertubuhan Muafakat Perpaduan Kuala Lumpur (Padu) handed a memorandum to Hanipa to abolish the Sedition Act.