KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 28, 2016:
The High Court here allowed Padang Serai Member of Parliament N. Surendran’s appeal on the constitutional question of intention in relation to his charge for allegedly making a seditious comment in a Youtube video two years ago.
High Court judge Datuk Ab Karim Ab Rahman allowed the appeal after hearing brief oral submissions by both parties in the open court.
“The court allows this appeal for the (intention) issue to be referred to the High Court and it will be heard together with two other questions that have been referred before this,” he said.
The two other constitutional questions are whether the Sedition Act is unconstitutional and whether the Law should criminalise fundamental liberties.
Ab Karim has fixed March 7 for hearing of the three questions before him.
Surendran was represented by defence counsel M. Puravalen while deputy public prosecutor Wan Shaharuddin Wan Ladin prosecuted.
Meanwhile, Sessions Court judge Amernudin Ahmad today fixed March 9 as the next mention for three other sedition cases – human rights lawyer Eric Paulsen with a sedition charge over a tweet criticising the Malaysian Islamic Development Department for promoting “extremism” to the High Court, Surendran (who was slapped with a second charge for criticising the Court of Appeal ruling through a news release titled “Fitnah II is flawed, defensive and insupportable”) and Zunar (who faced nine seditious charges for tweets pertaining to opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy conviction) pending the disposal of Surendran’s Youtube sedition case at the High Court.
When met outside the courtroom, Surendran remained adamant in his fight against the Sedition Act.
“Once again, I call upon the government to repeal the Sedition Act completely and this remains the stand of Pakatan Harapan.
“The people have to be allowed to be given the right to speak out and criticise the government because the act is stopping democracy in our country.
“All oppressive acts must go in 2016 including the Sedition Act and National Security Council Bill.”