Don’t derail PH reform efforts, LFL tells cops on social media probe

Lawyers for Liberty tells the police to cease all investigations which interfere with freedom of expression.

PETALING JAYA: Rights group Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) today urged police not to derail the reform efforts made under the previous government, following the announcement that three people are being investigated for social media posts regarding the current political situation.

LFL director Melissa Sasidaran said the Pakatan Harapan government had been committed to reform, including the repeal of the Sedition Act and draconian provisions of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA).

“This must continue to be respected and the police must not facilitate the derailing of the progress made thus far,” she said in a statement.

The individuals in question are being investigated under the Sedition Act as well as Section 233 of the CMA.

Sasidaran said there had been an “unprecedented abuse” of these laws under the Najib Razak administration which she called “the worst period for freedom of expression in the history of our nation”.

She expressed concern over the “vague and indiscriminate” nature of the laws which she said allow the arbitrary interpretation of “anything contentious as criminal”.

“The police should strive to be a respectable institution that upholds the Federal Constitution and human rights.

“Such abuse of power is unacceptable, and we therefore call upon the police to cease all investigations which unduly interfere with the right to freedom of expression immediately,” she said.