CIJ reiterates call for freedom of expression to be protected
June 15, 2020
The Centre for Independent Journalism (CIJ) calls on the Perikatan Nasional government to stop using Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) to censor and silence dissenting and non-conforming voices, following the charging of radio DJ Patrick Teoh in Johor yesterday for making an “offensive” statement against Johor Crown Prince Tunku Ismail Sultan Ibrahim.
Freedom of expression is clearly enshrined under international human rights law, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and in our Federal Constitution. Limits on the freedom of expression in law must be clear and narrowly defined, and serve a well-defined public interest function. These limits and the related measures adopted to address alleged online infringement must meet the harm test to determine legitimacy, necessity and proportionality. Freedom of expression must be protected!
We reiterate our call for Communications and Multimedia Minister Saifuddin Abdullah to spearhead a review and adopt a moratorium on the arbitrary use of Section 233 of the CMA without further delay.