Date: 16 Oct 2014 (Thursday)Time: 10:30 amGathering point: Padang Merbok Car Park (Tempat Letak Kereta Padang Merbok)Dress code: Chamber attire
Walk in solidarity with Bar, media folk urged
The gathering at Padang Merbok in Kuala Lumpur beginning 10.30am tomorrow is to protest against a law which has been abused to restrict the people’s right to freedom of expression and freedom of the press, Geram said.
“Geramm’s planned participation also follows a recent meeting between our representative, along with the Institute of Journalists Malaysia, with Tengku Sariffuddin Tengku Ahmad who is the press secretary of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak to hand over a similar petition of protest which recorded more than 100 signatures from media practitioners who are against the Act.”
“Hence Geramm is inviting media practitioners to walk along with the Malaysian Bar tomorrow and protest against a law which has been abused to restrict those two fundamental rights.”
The Bar Council announced that it is organising the protest walk called ‘Walk for Peace and Freedom’, after the Malaysian Bar in an extraordinary general meeting last month approved a motion to hold the walk, where they will march from Padang Merbok to the Parliament.
This is the fourth walk of protest of its kind in the 67-year-old history of the professional body.
Participants are expected to gather at around 10.30am before marching to Parliament, where a representative from the Malaysian Bar is expected to hand over a memorandum of protest to a representative of the government.
Many ambiguities in the Act
Geramm, in commenting on the investigation into Malaysiakini’s journalist Susan Loone, emphasised that there are many “ambiguities” in the provisions under the Act which can be abused to prevent any individual from speaking up out of fear.
In the event that a published article is at the centre of an investigation under the Act, Geramm also urges authorities to carry out their duties in a professional manner.
“Geramm hereby urges all media practitioners who are against the use of the Sedition Act to come together and demand that the government fulfill its promises of implementing legal reforms and secure the rights to freedom of expression for all Malaysians.”
Previously, it was reported that Loone had been arrested and quizzed for nine hours following an interview she had with Penang executive councillor Phee Boon Poh.
Geramm is a loose coalition of journalists, media representatives and activists who are fighting for freedom of the press and its practitioners.- Malaysiakini, 15/10/2014, Walk in solidarity with Bar, media folk urged
|Press release by Proham in Support of the Malaysian Bar's Walk for Peace on 16th October 2014|
|Wednesday, 15 October 2014 11:10am|
Proham supports the Bar Council's peaceful march on Oct 16, 2014. Peaceful public expression is a fundamental human right. This provides a democratic avenue of expression whereby citizens display their unhappiness through a constructive public display.
Proham calls on the Federal Government to host a dialogue session with the Bar Council and other human rights organisations so as to reveal its plan of action in repealing the Sedition Act and replacing it with the promised Harmony Act. In this context it is important for the Federal government to also release the Human Rights Action Plan which Malaysia made as a commitment to the global community during the UPR in Geneva Human Rights Council discussions.
Proham calls on the authorities to discontinue the use of the Sedition Act till Parliament has introduced the new law with adequate protection for freedom of speech in the context of citizens responsibility in the balanced enshrined in the Federal Constitution.
Issued on behalf of Proham by Datuk Kuthubul Zaman (Proham Chairman) and Datuk Dr Denison Jayasooria (Proham Secretary General) - Malaysian
Suport for the Walk for Peace and Freedom 2014 have been coming in as follows:-
Open Letter from the Commonwealth Lawyers Association to the Prime Minister of Malaysia in Support of the Malaysian Bar's Peace Walk on 16th October 2014