'Govt will repeal oppressive laws to ensure strong system of checks and balances'

Hidir Reduan

BANGI: The Pakatan Harapan (PH) government will repeal laws that oppress freedom of expression and the media to ensure a strong system of checks and balances.

Balakong PH by-election candidate Wong Siew Ki said the government would repeal laws that curtailed the people’s ability to question wrongdoings on the part of the government.

She was responding to a four-point manifesto unveiled by MCA candidate for the Balakong by-election Tan Chee Teong this morning. The manifesto’s core thrust focuses on MCA playing a checks and balances role in the state.

“MCA is outdated. In Pakatan Harapan, we already check and balance each other. We have four parties (PKR, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, Parti Amanah Negara, and DAP),” she said during a programme to distribute Jalur Gemilang flags in Balakong this afternoon.

“We even have ministers (from different parties) who get caught in crossfire (whenever there are missteps).

“The new government (under PH) is also repealing Acts that control the people and the media from talking bad about the government.

“Slowly we are abolishing these Acts so the people can truly act as a check and balance (against the government).”

Recently, PH lawmakers passed a Bill in Dewan Rakyat to repeal the Anti-Fake News Act, which carried a maximum six years’ jail and a fine of RM500,000 for spreading fake news.

The government is also reviewing the National Security Council Act, which purportedly infringes on the Yang di-Pertuan Agong’s special powers to declare an emergency.

Wong said she had received an encouraging response from the people of Balakong. She said they were encouraging her to emulate and do even better than by the previous Balakong assemblyman, Eddie Ng Tien Chee, who died in a traffic accident on July 20.

“It will not be an easy job, but I will try my best. There are issues like dilapidated infrastructure here that we (PH) can settle,” she said.

On whether there was confusion over PH’s red logo, Wong said there were no problems as the people recognised the logo straightaway.

“However, we are working hard (to boost awareness of PH’s red logo) as there may still be those who are unaware (of the PH logo),” she said, adding that PH campaigners would meet as many Balakong people as possible to urge them to exercise their right to vote.

She said PH would unveil its Balakong by-election manifesto this week. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd