Motion to repeal Anti-Fake News Act tabled at Dewan Rakyat

Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Liew Vui Keong. (Bernama pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: The motion to repeal the Anti-Fake News Act 2018 was tabled at the Dewan Rakyat today.

It seeks to repeal Act 803 due to the change in government policy that fake news may be dealt with under existing laws such as the Penal Code (Act 574), the Printing Press and Publications Act 1984 (Act 301) and the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 (Act 588).

“As such, Act 803 is no longer relevant,” the motion stated.

However, any application made prior to the date the act became operational, and any proceedings commenced before the act was repealed will continue.

The motion was tabled by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Liew Vui Keong for first reading. It will be debated at this sitting.

The Anti-Fake News Act was gazetted in April under the Barisan Nasional government.

Under the act, anyone found guilty of producing or disseminating fake news can be fined up to RM500,000, handed a maximum six-year imprisonment or both, upon conviction.

Opposition lawmakers and civil society groups had opposed the act, which was bulldozed though just before the May 9 polls, saying it would be abused to muffle dissent.