SUARAM expresses disappointment for the decision by the Court of Appeal to depart from the previous decision declaring Section 9(5) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 as unconstitutional.
The decision delivered by the Court of Appeal last year in regards to the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 was a great step forward for Human Rights and Freedom of Assembly in Malaysia. It is disappointing that the Court of Appeal decided to depart from the earlier decision. Undoubtedly, this decision would be celebrated by those who seek to diminish and undo the progress of human rights and freedom of assembly in Malaysia.
In line with the Federal Constitution of Malaysia, international law and instruments that Malaysia are a party to, it is unthinkable and deplorable that the Court of Appeal would deliver a judgment that contravenes human rights. Recalling the revelation shared by Justice Mohd Hishamudin Mohd Yunus, such a decision by the Court of Appeal reflect the political interest and motivation of a certain quarters in the Judiciary. This would undoubtedly reinforce the view that these individuals in the Judiciary of Malaysia are no more than impotent and weak willed followers of a dictator that care not for the wellbeing of Malaysia.
With this departure, SUARAM have no doubts that the persecution and prosecution of the brave individuals who sacrificed much for Malaysia would resume at a brisk pace. With this in mind, SUARAM implore the Federal Court of Malaysia to put an official end to this farce and ensure that Malaysian would enjoy the freedom to assemble to the full extent guaranteed by the Federal Constitution of Malaysia.
Despite this pathetic political decision made by the Court of Appeal, SUARAM have no doubt that this would be no more than another challenge in Malaysia’s march to a truly democratic country.
SUARAM appeal to the good grace of the Attorney-General and the Police to cease the current prosecution of rally organizers under Section 9(5) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 pending the appeal to the Federal Court of Malaysia. Failing to do so would certainly reinforce the existing preconception and perception that the Royal Malaysian Police and the Attorney General Chamber as nothing more than ANOTHER decrepit tool of the ruling government of Malaysia.