Law minister Takiyuddin Hassan this evening denied that the government sought the emergency proclamation because it had lost the majority in Parliament, branding such claims as “fake news”.
He also said that such allegations were made only by “certain quarters”.
“It is an offence. To me it is an offence,” he said in a joint press conference with communications and multimedia minister Saifuddin Abdullah here today.
It was reported yesterday that those who create, publish or distribute fake news would now face a fine of up to RM100,000, a jail term of up to three years or both under a new emergency ordinance.
Those who pay for the creation of such fake news will face harsher punishment, with fines of up to RM500,000 or a jail term of six years, or both.
The Emergency (Essential Powers) (No. 2) Ordinance 2021 defines “fake news” as news or information that “is or are wholly or partly false relating to Covid-19 or the proclamation of emergency”.
This has drawn criticism from politicians, media groups and lawyers, who expressed concern that it would stifle people’s rights and freedoms.
Source : FMT