The PPA and MCA must be repealed for freedom of the press

17 Feb 2019 / 19:00 H.

KUALA LUMPUR: The Printing and Publications Act (PPA) 1984 and the Multimedia and Communications Act 1998 must be repealed to maintain the standard of journalism and freedom of the press, according to lawyer and activist Datuk S. Ambiga.

In addition, media practitioners must set up a council to monitor each other, she added.

“The PPA is an oppressive legislation particularly when you have the wrong government, one that seeks to abuse power. These laws are easily used to silence the media,” Abiga told reporters after speaking as a panelist at a forum titled “On The Rule of Law, Legal Reforms and Clean Government: A Conversation” held at the Publika shopping mall, here today.

On the other hand, she said, the Multimedia and Communications Act can be used effectively to gag the media.

Home Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin recently said the government was reviewing the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act 2012 to determine whether it should be abolished or retained.

The PPA, Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 and Prevention of Terrorism Act are undergoing a similar study.

Ambiga also called on media practitioners to establish a council to monitor each other. “This council must be driven by journalists. In other words you judge each other and you judge yourselves,” she added.

Sarawak Report editor Claire Rewcastle-Brown, who was present at the event, echoed Ambiga’s views.

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