Malaysiakini NEWS

Drop bid to jail activist for sedition over post-GE13 speeches, Kit Siang tells AG

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Lim Kit Siang has urged Attorney-General Tommy Thomas to drop the prosecution's cross-appeal to reinstate activist Haris Ibrahim's (above) jail sentence under his sedition conviction.

“Thomas should call up the papers and drop the prosecution's cross-appeal to... ensure Haris will not become a second Wan Ji,” said the DAP veteran in a statement this afternoon.

He was referring to Muslim preacher Wan Ji Wan Hussin, who received an enhanced punishment under the Sedition Act 1948 following the prosecution's appeal.

Lim pointed out that Pakatan Harapan had promised to revoke the Sedition Act, among other oppressive laws, in its election manifesto.

“Unless and until this promise is fulfilled by legislation in parliament, the AG should review all sedition cases pending before the courts,” he added.

The prosecution has appealed to reinstate a jail term against Haris after the Kuala Lumpur High Court ruled to substitute the lawyer's eight-month jail sentence for sedition with a RM4,000 fine.

The Kuala Lumpur Sessions Court had found him guilty on April 14, 2016 of making seditious remarks via speeches at a post-13th General Election (GE13) gathering at the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall on May 13, 2013.

Haris appealed against the ruling and on April 5 last year, High Court judge Azman Abdullah substituted his jail term with the fine.

The issue of conviction and sentencing under the Sedition Act came under the spotlight after Wan Ji received his enhanced sentence on July 9.

He was initially charged under the Sedition Act in 2014, and was found guilty and convicted by the Shah Alam Sessions Court on April 9, 2018.

The AG had said he was not personally aware of the cross-appeal, and that it was made prior to last year’s general election.

After Wan Ji was served his enhanced sentence, Lim had urged deputy public prosecutors to read Harapan's manifesto to learn about the government’s position on certain laws.

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