Gerakan welcomes the repeal of Sedition Act 1948
we believe that through the abolition and formulation of new bills, the government is ensuring that adequate democratic space is provided to the people who are encouraged and instilled with the attidute to be more tolerant and inclusive towards differences of opinion as well as dissenting voices
Thursday, 12 July 2012
Gerakan Deputy President Dato’ Chang Ko Youn today welcomes the announcement by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najiib Abdul Razak last night that the Sedition Act 1948 will be repealed and replaced with a new act to be known as the National Harmony Act.
“Gerakan welcomes and supports the repeal of Sedition Act 1948 and the replacement with a new National Harmony Act. As envisioned by the PM, we believe that through the abolition and formulation of new bills, the government is ensuring that adequate democratic space is provided to the people who are encouraged and instilled with the attidute to be more tolerant and inclusive towards differences of opinion as well as dissenting voices,” says Dato’ Chang Ko Youn who is also the party’s Human Rights and Law Bureau chairman.
Besides, he asserts that the repeal of Sedition Act 1948 is in line with the effort to uphold the principles of human rights by ensuring the freedom of speech exhorting individual’s liberty to express opinions openly without fear and favour. While at the same time, the new National Harmony Act is a balancing effort to handle the complexity of plurality existing in the country.
“However, it is common knowledge that outspoken politicians with racist and chauvinistic remarks are the main target group under the Sedition Act 1948 and conceivably it will be much the same under the new National Harmony Act, simply because politicians are the most prominent public speakers with huge influence and frequently appealing to the masses due to the politicking nature in politics. Bigotry has to be curbed and inflammatory statements along racial and religious have to be condemned. Therefore, I sincerely urge my fellow politicians from both sides of the political divide to comment sensibly and responsibly in their work without upsetting the feeling of other races and undermining the national unity as well as social harmony,” says Dato’ Chang.