Malaysian Bar to Putrajaya: Abolish, not amend, NSC Act

Malaysian Bar to Putrajaya: Abolish, not amend, NSC Act

PUCHONG: Malaysian Bar president Abdul Fareed Abdul Gafoor has called upon the government to abolish the controversial National Security Council Act 2016 (NSC Act) as promised by Pakatan Harapan in its manifesto instead of amending it.

“The tabling of the bill to further strengthen the draconian NSC Act can only be understood as an abandonment of PH government’s election promise as well as its commitment and willingness to bringing forth genuine and positive legislative reform,” he said in a statement.

“The Malaysian Bar urges the Government to withdraw the bill, and to abolish the NSC Act at the very next Parliamentary sitting, in fulfilment of its election promise,” he added.

The NSC (Amendment) Act 2019 was tabled in the Dewan Rakyat last week sought to strip the powers of the prime minister in declaring security areas and return it to the Agong.

It also raised possible prosecution under the act including for information leaks and non-compliance by individuals.

Fareed reminded PH that it was the coalition that described the law as “oppressive and tyrannical” in the manifesto.

“It bears restating that the Pakatan Harapan coalition pledged — in “Promise 27” of its election manifesto for the 14th General Election — to abolish laws that it described as “oppressive” and “tyrannical”, with the NSC Act being listed as one such law.”

He also added that the NSC Act already has “all the hallmarks of authoritarianism”.