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Tuesday, October 28, 2014
Speaking about context, what about other sedition cases?
COMMENTARY BY THEMALAYSIAN INSIDER
Published: 27 October 2014
Datuk Ibrahim Ali's threat to burn Bibles containing the word 'Allah' last year was deemed to have been made in the context of defending Islam and hence it was acceptable. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, October 27, 2014
Context, theAttorney-General Chambers said today, was the important ingredient to consider when deciding whether DatukIbrahim Alicommitted sedition when he threatened to burn bibles that contained the word "Allah" last year.
"As decided by thecourt, before a statement is said to have seditious tendencies, the statement must be viewed in the context it was made ...
"When studied in its entire context, Datuk Ibrahim's statement is not categorised as having seditious tendencies.
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"It was clear Datuk Ibrahim Ali had no intention to create religious tensions, but was only defending the purity of Islam," the AGC said, noting the Perkasa chief also said: "This is not a sentiment or (an attempt) to provoke religious tensions, but to defend the purity of Islam which is clearly (stated) in the laws."
"He also did not commit any offence under Section 298 or 298A of thePenal Codeas he was clearly defending the purity of Islam."
Right. So the context is this, Ibrahim was not charged because he said he was not attempting to provoke religious tensions but was defending the purity of Islam.
Well, to put it in context, that is a half-baked explanation by the AGC, a comment after the fact.
In any court, this type of mitigation would have been laughed at.
Can the AGC explain what made the legally correct statement by the late Karpal Singh and academics Dr Azmi Shahrom and Dr Aziz Bari seditious? What was their context that made them liable for sedition?
In their statements thus far, none of these three stand-up individuals caused an affront to the dignity of another religion or community. Their words were factual and based on the law of the land.
Yet, one was convicted of sedition and the other two face sedition charges. And many others run the risk of being prosecuted without knowing the context of the offence.
But the one individual who has consistently caused the mercury of race and religion to rise in Malaysia is being defended by the AGC and thefederal government.
How's that for context in Malaysia? – October 27, 2014.