Why are the oppressive laws still on our statute books?

Posted on October 9, 2019


Masnuh-650x340Later this morning, my appeal, and that of the prosecution, in relation to my conviction and fine under the Sedition Act, 1948, comes up before the Court of Appeal for hearing.

In a post in August, last year, I suggested that the sum total of promises in the PH election manifesto can be conveniently summarised into 3 groupings :

  1. those which will require significant financial resources to make good on their promises;
  2. those which, if pursued vigorously, leaves it open for UMNO and PAS and the “ketuanan Melayu” and “membela Islam” NGOs to continue with their brand of race and religion politics; and
  3. those which do not involve any element in 1 and 2 above.

In my view, the entire slew of oppressive laws, inherited from the British, as well as enacted UMNO/BN, and which PH pledged in its manifesto to repeal if it came to power, would come under the 3rd grouping.

No amendment to the Constitution required, and hence a bill to repeal those laws could be passed, at least in the Dewan Rakyat, by a simple majority. That the BN-dominated Dewan Negara might not support such a bill is a separate issue.

In taking such a bill to the Dewan Rakyat and passing it there, PH would have honoured its pledge to us.

On 2nd August, last year, I posted a very simple draft repeal bill that took me all of 2 minutes to draft.

I will reproduce it here below.

Preamble : A law to free the rakyat from the tyranny of draconian laws

Section 1(1) The laws enumerated in Schedule I hereto are hereby repealed

Schedule I

  1. Sedition Act, 1948
  2. Anti-Fake News Act, 2018
  3. National Security Council Act, 2016

I then asked : “Pakatan Harapan, why does it require 3 months to rid ourselves of the Sedition Act?”

Its been more than a year and that question has gone unanswered.

So my question to PH now : 10th December is World Human Rights Day. Shall we gather  on the streets that day to remind you of your promise to rid our nation of those bloody laws?