10-day requirement for peaceful assembly to be amended

Sunday’s International Women’s Day rally, focusing on women’s rights including the LGBT community, did not meet the 10-day notice requirement. (FB pic)

KUALA LUMPUR: The home ministry is set to amend the 10-day notice under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA 2012) following a recent controversial international women’s day rally which failed to obtain a permit beforehand, says Deputy Minister Mohd Azis Jamman.

He said the proposal would be tabled by Home Minister Muhyiddin Yassin in this Parliament session.

Clause 9 (1) of the PAA 2012 states that the organiser shall submit the notice for organising a rally to the police within 10 days.

The rally, focusing on women’s rights including the LGBT community, did not meet the 10-day notice requirement.

Azis said the rally had been abused by certain parties without any regard for the sensitivities of other communities in the country.

“The rally was not for LGBT, but they abused it and this is a sensitive issue,” he said when met by reporters at the Parliament lobby here today.

The Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 is among six laws expected to be amended or repealed, alongside the Sedition Act 1948, Prevention of Crime Act 1959, Prevention of Terrorism Act 2015, Printing Presses and Publications Act 1984 and Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012.

Last Saturday, several NGOs, including the Women’s Aid Organisation and Sisters in Islam, and LGBT activists were reportedly involved in the rally, which later led to negative reactions from some groups.