Don't forget pledge to abolish Sedition Act, Muda reminds Pakatan

PETALING JAYA: Muda has reminded the government, especially Pakatan Harapan, to continue its reform agenda and to abolish the Sedition Act.

Muda secretary-general Amir Hariri Abd Hadi said Pakatan politicians had previously backed the Abolish the Sedition Act Movement, together with hundreds of NGOs, to make three demands.

"The first was to abolish the Sedition Act 1948 and the second was to drop all charges under the Sedition Act and release those detained.

"Thirdly, the abolished Act should not be replaced with another equally-oppressive law," he said in a statement on Tuesday (Sept 26).

Muda's call came after the Court of Appeal rejected independent preacher Wan Ji Wan Hussin's appeal to quash his conviction over a 2014 sedition case for insulting royalty.

A panel of three judges led by Justice Datuk Hadhariah Syed Ismail unanimously decided to reinstate the Shah Alam Sessions Court's April 9, 2018 decision sentencing Wan Ji to nine months in prison for the offence.

Justice Hadhariah also set aside the Shah Alam High Court's July 2019 decision sentencing him to one year in prison.

Muda pointed out that the use of the Sedition Act had continued to increase since 2012 since the Internal Security Act was repealed.

"Those investigated and prosecuted at that time were politicians and Opposition activists who are now part of the government," Amir added.

In July, Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said said the Cabinet has agreed in principle to review the Sedition Act 1948 to ensure it is used solely to protect the dignity of the royal institution.

"This will be done in consideration of the Rulers being the head of Islam as well as best practices following international standards," said the Minister in the Prime Minister's Department (Law and Institutional Reforms).

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