The PM says the use of the Sedition Act in this case is unavoidable as the caretaker Kedah MB had touched on the Rulers.
Taking to Facebook after he was slapped with two counts of making seditious remarks at the Selayang Sessions Court, caretaker Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Noor shared several snaps of himself amidst a crowd outside the courthouse this morning.
Sanusi pleaded not guilty to two counts of uttering seditious remarks that could incite disloyalty towards the Rulers.
He captioned the photos briefly: I have Allah.
In one shot, Sanusi raised one hand and the image looked similar to the photo used in the Anwar: The Untold Story movie poster.
Twitter user @cheajibsayang asked: Siapa gamaknya hero filem Sanusi Untold Story nanti? (Who will be the hero of the film Sanusi the untold story?)
Siapa gamaknya hero filem Sanusi Untold Story nanti? pic.twitter.com/bqjfZX1rIa— ajibtoo ™ (@cheajibsayang) July 18, 2023
Gag order violation?
After he was charged, the court imposed a gag order to prevent him from issuing any statements with regard to these cases.
However, after he was released on bail, Sanusi held a press conference outside the courthouse.
He claimed that the charges against him were rushed and politically motivated.
Basing it on the fact that the investigation only took three days, he alleged that the case was rushed to jeopardise his chances in the state election set to take place 12 August.
He claimed that while he wasn’t officially notified that he would be charged in court, he had made it known that he would appear in court.
However, he said he was still arrested at 3am at the apartment he was at in Kuala Lumpur.
It looks like in Malaysia we can’t say anything, if in politics, usually we settle it in politics, by giving counter statements…. but in Malaysia today because we have a government that is afraid, they use the police to block our speech. Looks like politicians are bankrupt, using the authorities to block the rakyat’s uprising. I hope this is a sign that they are actually afraid and all the country’s apparatus and government agencies are being used to block the development and heat of the rakyat.Datuk Seri Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor
He further expressed hope that the six states up for election will see a Perikatan Nasional (PN) win.
Anwar says necessary, in this case
With the charges against Sanusi framed under the controversial Sedition Act 1948, it is no surprise that many have voiced their concern that the Act was still being used.
Lawyer Eric Paulsen said the Act was an outdated piece of colonial legislation that has no place in a country that values democracy and human rights.
Whether u like Sanusi or not should not detract from the fact that the Sedition Act is an outdated piece of colonial legislation that has no place in a Msia that values democratic & human rights. https://t.co/Wym3mQkVBt— Eric Paulsen (@EricPaulsen101) July 18, 2023
Another lawyer Edmund Bon also asked why the Act was being used again, stressing that it “must go”.
Why is the Sedition Act being used again? I thought there was a moratorium pending its review to be amended or repealed. It should not be used and must go.— Edmund Bon (@edmundbon) July 18, 2023
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the use of the Sedition Act in this case was unavoidable as Sanusi had touched on the Rulers.
As reported by Malaysia Gazette, Anwar said on principle, they would avoid using the Sedition Act but this involved the position of the Rulers.
He said he had never used the Act for cases where the prime minister was criticised.
But this is a matter of the position and the dignity of the Rulers which we must guard and avoid it from becoming an unhealthy political debate.Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim