We are not backtracking on repressive laws, says home ministry

Both amendment bills concerning the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA) and the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 are expected to be tabled in the next Parliament sitting.

PETALING JAYA: The home ministry today rebutted claims by a Suhakam commissioner accusing Putrajaya of backtracking over repressive laws.

In a statement today, the ministry stated that it had already completed drafting two amendment bills for the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 (PAA) and the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 (Sosma).

“The PAA amendment bill has already received approval from the Attorney-General’s Chambers and will be brought to the Cabinet soon for a decision.

“As for the Sosma amendment bill, it is still being reviewed by the AGC.

“Both amendment bills are expected to be tabled in the next Parliament sitting,” it said in a statement.

Dewan Rakyat proceedings, which concluded last week, are expected to reconvene in July.

The ministry further stated that discussions with the relevant agencies are still ongoing to either amend or repeal the Prevention of Crime Act 1959, Prevention of Terrorism Act 2015, Printing Presses and Publications Act 1948 and Sedition Act 1948.

“Any decision to amend or repeal these acts must be done carefully and studied thoroughly to ensure that the nation’s security is not jeopardised,” it added.

The ministry was responding to Suhakam commissioner Aishah Bidin, who claimed that the Pakatan Harapan government had no plans to change the repressive laws.

Aishah was a member of a special committee tasked with reviewing these security laws.