KUCHING (Bernama): Seven individuals comprising a woman and six men pleaded not guilty in the Magistrate's Court here Friday (Oct 11), to a charge of disrespecting the national anthem,"Negaraku", on Sept 27.
The allegation against Andrew Chong, 33, Kon Tai Keong, 37, Leong Shaow Tung, 43, Bong Sak Sin, 44, Tan Kok Chiang and Pui Ping Ping, both 46, as well as Phang Ngin Pen, 64, is that they did not stand to attention while the "Negaraku" was played during a fundraising dinner, held at a hotel on Jalan Ban Hock on Sept 27, at 7.15pm.
They were charged under Section 8 of the National Anthem Act 1968 which carries a maximum penalty comprising a RM100 fine or imprisonment of one month.
Magistrate Zubaidah Sharkawi fixed Nov 11 for case management and allowed bail of RM1,000 with a surety, for each of the accused.
On Sept 29, a video which went viral on social media, displayed a group of people believed to be members or supporters of the Sarawak for Sarawakians (S4S) activist group, who were seated while the "Negaraku" was played at a function.
According to a media report on Sept 30, the group's spokesman said they had acted as such, to protest the Federal Government's decision not to provide the state with a 20% royalty for its oil reserves. - Bernama