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New law minister wants to liberate rakyat with reformed laws

INTERVIEW | Liew Vui Keong is no stranger to his current ministerial portfolio of de facto law minister, for he was a deputy minister in the Prime Minister's Department overseeing law and parliamentary affairs between 2009 and 2013.

The 58-year-old Batu Sapi parliamentarian returns to Putrajaya with a mission to liberate Malaysians from restrictive laws prohibiting them from speaking out their mind, movement and freedom to be associated with various associations.

"I want the people not to be fearful of living in this new Malaysia. This is the new Malaysia, with us out of the 60 years of rule by BN and Umno," the Batu Sapi parliamentarian told Malaysiakini in an interview yesterday.

While the permanent chairperson of Parti Warisan Sabah may not come from the Pakatan Harapan parties that pledged to abolish several draconian laws, Liew nevertheless shares Harapan's views on the need to abolish or reform these laws.

Liew, who has yet to be briefed on the full nature of the law reform process, pledged to look into, among others, the Sedition Act 1946 and Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 (PPPA), to push for the possibility of the abolition or amendment of these two laws.

He particularly emphasised on the Sedition Act, which was on the list of the Malaysia Law Reform Committee (MLRC) that he chaired since 2009, but could not complete his work as he lost in the 2013 general election.

"I have come back now and I guess I would have to continue to look into the Sedition Act and make recommendations to the cabinet. I will look at it earnestly as I know that it affects the aspirations of the people, as stated in Harapan's manifesto, and (I will) recommend to the cabinet for an immediate decision," he said.

"At the same time, we need to ensure that the citizens of the country will be well protected and no party can use certain remarks against the others in this multiracial country.

"We don't want the people to use seditious remarks against the institutions of the nation, especially against the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. These need to be protected," Liew explained...

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