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Suhakam renews call for Putrajaya to abolish Sedition Act

Published:  |  Modified:

Suhakam has reiterated its stand that Putrajaya should abolish the Sedition Act 1948, as pledged in Pakatan Harapan's election manifesto.

The Malaysian Insight reported Suhakam chairperson Othman Hashim as saying that Malaysians will only be able to enjoy full freedom of expression once the colonial-era security law is repealed.

"Suhakam maintains its position on the principles of freedom of expression, which is the right of all Malaysians.

"We believe that anyone who expresses views on human rights should not suffer from fear of reprisal or intimidation," Othman said.

Harapan has come under constant fire for failing to abolish the Sedition Act. 

Since the coalition came into power 16 months ago, the law has been used to investigate the organisers of the Women's March and preacher Wan Ji Wan Hussin.

In July, Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin said that the government was "reviewing" the law, but had not decided what to do with it.

However, Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad later reiterated that Putrajaya would abolish the Sedition Act and replace it with a new law.

According to Othman, any new law must ensure that the rights of Malaysians are protected.

"When they repeal the law, it must be replaced with a new law that comprises the spirit of right to freedom of expression and speech, the limitation of such rights, as well as the elements of national harmony and security," he said.

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