PETALING JAYA: Universiti Malaya Association of New Youth (Umany) president Yap Wen Qing and vice-president Tan Li Yuan will be probed by police for sedition and offences under the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Act 1998.
This came after the group published a post on Facebook with the title “Yang Di-Pertuan Agong should not interfere in national affairs”.
Yap was called to the Kajang police station today for questioning and a spokesman for the group told FMT that he was cooperating with the investigation.
The spokesman said Yap spent three hours at the police station speaking to the police. A human rights lawyer was present.
Charges have yet to be levelled at the group or the president, the spokesman added.
In a statement released after Yap’s questioning, the group reiterated that their post was protected by their right to free speech, as enshrined in the Federal Constitution, adding that their post “did not deserve to be silenced or maliciously attacked”.
The group further said: “We agree that any form of freedom must have its limits, but with that said, over limiting the boundaries of freedom to the extent of being unable to rationally discuss current issues in Malaysia would be much too excessive.”
They also hit out at “irresponsible” individuals whom they claimed had harassed and bullied them online following the FB post, alleging that certain female members had been the victim of sexual harassment and verbal abuse online.
Universiti Malaya, which released a statement saying they would investigate the group, also came under fire, with the group saying that the suppression of academic freedom displayed by the institution would make them the “laughing stock” of the international community.
Finally, the statement thanked those who had supported Umany since the post was published, and hoped that civil society organisations can work together to protect free speech and “lift our country out of the quagmire of racial superiority and hatred politics”.