BARELY a month after taking office, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration has wielded the Sedition Act — this time on academic and The Nut Graph columnist Wong Chin Huat. Few details have been released on the reasons and details of Wong’s arrest. As of today, he has been remanded for a day and is likely to be released this evening.
Malaysians are no stranger to the Sedition Act. Under Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s administration, from 2008 to 2009 alone, the Act was used against bloggers Raja Petra Kamaruddin and Sheih Kickdefella, and DAP chairperson Karpal Singh. In the last days of Tun Mahathir Mohamad’s administration, online news portal Malaysiakini was also targeted under the Act.
It’s important to note that historically in the US, for example, sedition laws were used to stifle political dissent.
Of course, the Sedition Act in Malaysia has its own definition of what is a “seditious tendency“. But readers would know by now that Six Words On… is not about boring legalese. It’s about being creative, pithy, and fun. The aim is definition, not … ahem … sedition.
To start the ball rolling, here is what The Nut Graph team has churned out so far:
A government that brooks no dissent.
The concept of sedition is undemocratic.
Gan Pei Ling:
Baffled Malaysians: “Why arrest democracy’s defender?”
Police: “He’s seditious. We said it.”
Rakyat’s eyes are crystal clear, tuan.
Black for Malaysia. Black for Wong.
Jacqueline Ann Surin:
Why resort to an archaic law?
An easy way to stifle dissent.
Police actions reflect poorly on BN.
Who is afraid of an academic?
Arresting Wong won’t make it right.
Cannot *bleep* *bleep* *bleep* the monarchy.
Made in Britain. Worn in Malaysia.
Testing citizenship the Barisan Nasional way.
Seriously? Arrested? For promoting black apparel?
“I think—” “Seditious behaviour! Arrest him!”
Give us your take on sedition in the comments section below.
See also Six Words On…
Chua Soi Lek
The Nut Graph is seditious … not!
Inspired by Ernest Hemingway‘s genius, the Six Words On… section challenges readers to give us their comments about a current issue, contemporary personality or significant event in just six words. The idea is to get readers engaged in an issue that The Nut Graph identifies, while having fun and being creatively disciplined.