(Image courtesy of Mob's Crib)
Excerpts: Read here for more in Malaysiakini
Raja Petra Kamaruddin, 58, wrote himself into the annals of Malaysian history today when he became the first blogger to be charged under the Sedition Act 1948.
He was charged under Section 4 (1) (c) for nine paragraphs of a story in Malaysia Today on April 25 which allegingly implied that Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and his wife were involved in the killing of Mongolian woman Altantuya Shaariibuu.
At about 10.20am, the case was moved from Jalan Duta to Petaling Jaya Sessions Court.
What ensued was a convoy of cars, like those you see on the highway on their way to kenduris, headed towards the modest court in PJ State.
Instead of paying bail and keeping quiet until his trial date in October, Raja Petra chose the reverse. In the courtroom, one of his lawyers had already told several reporters that his client would not pay bail because he believes in his innocence.
And as the news filtered out of the small Sessions Court in Petaling Jaya of his reluctance or inability to post bail, the crowd of well-wishers, bloggers and well-wishers gasped in astonishment at the thought that Raja Petra would be jailed until October.
Clasped in handcuffs like a common criminal, photographers followed his every step as he was led in and out of the court after he did not post bail.
Among the politicians who turned up to see him at the court were Nurul Izzah Anwar, Tian Chua, Lim Kit Siang, Sallahuddin Ayub, Liew Chin Tong and Wan Azizah Ismail, who showed up at Petaling Jaya later.
Other notables include human rights lawyers Haris Ibrahim, Malik Imtiaz, bloggers Bernard Khoo, YL Chong, Yassim Salleh, Ahiruddin Attan and Nuraina Samad.
Four other MPs - Karpal Singh, Gobind Singh, Lim Lip Eng and William Leong - made up his defence team alongside Jasvinderjit Singh, J Chandra and K Balaguru. The prosecution team only had Nordin Hassan.
Some 100 bloggers, well-wishers and press hounds were treated to hourly briefings of how he has been victimised by the government.
Conversations revolved around the injustice he has been meted out with. More was made of the fact that he will now have to linger in jail for causing Barisan Nasional's defeat in Selangor and four states and how he was targetted after an Umno Youth vice leader in Petaling Jaya Utara was said to have told a meeting that "we have to arrest Raja Petra".
And this is how legends are made.
"...A draconian law like the Sedition Act clearly has no place in a democratic society. Unlike defamation law, one cannot defend oneself from a charge of sedition on the ground of truthfulness. That the State has chosen to charge RPK for sedition rather than simple criminal defamation points to the need for a thorough revision of our media laws as demanded by a civil society.
I find it ludicrous that although 'Pete' has written many allegations against the IGP, the police, the AG, and also about the Khairy Chronicles, SCOMI and the PM's son Kamaluddin etc., he has never been charged with sedition or even libel. But when he writes an article about Najib and Rosmah, in which he has raised several pertinent questions on facts of the case already within public domain and backed by sworn court testimonies, he gets the book thrown at him.
These are without doubt tactics of intimidation and fear, but we Bugis are a hardy lot. May Allah give RPK courage. Truth and Justice may yet prevail...."
"...Cuma nak beritahu, Naib Presiden PAS Haji Mohamad Sabu menelefon dari Terengganu tadi memberitahu saya,RELATED ARTICLES
"Aku hormat Raja Petra. Sapa-sapa saja yang lebih berani dari aku, aku hormat.
Raja Petra lebih berani dari aku. Aku tak takut nak mengaku kelemahan aku".
Saya tak nak tulis apa-apa lagi. Anda jawablah sendiri, kalau rajin, siapa yang sepatutnya digari?
Dan, kepada yang enggan menderma kepada rayuan saya di sini (bukan rayuan Raja Petra), itu hampa punya pasai. Aku hanya mintak, bukan paksa.
Tak nak bagi, pi main jauh-jauh!..."
UMNO YOUTH CALLS FOR SEDITION ACT ON KARPAL SINGH
Perak Umno Youth has lodged a police report over a statement by Bukit Gelugor MP Karpal Singh which it deems seditious.
The movement's head, Zainol Fadzi Paharudin, said:
"We are asking the police to investigate Karpal Singh under the Sedition Act 1948 because the statement has created uneasiness among the people of Perak particularly with regard to the powers of the Sultan."
Read here for more
From Malysiakini: Read here
IN PARLIAMENT - LIM KIT SIANG'S SPEECH ON THE ARREST OF RPK
"...Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur) who, in his speech debating on the royal address, criticised Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and his wife Rosmah Mansor for "abusing the laws" in allegedly getting Raja Petra to be charged for sedition.
Lim said the quick police action and subsequent prosecution smacked of an "orchestrated" effort and abuse of the laws and government machinery to punish Raja Petra.
"They (Najib and Rosmah) reserve the right to clear their names through the laws. So why have they used the government facilities to take action against Raja Petra Kamaruddin? This is the abuse of powers.
There are other channels for the deputy prime minister and his family to take action against Raja Petra - to use civil action and litigation.
WHY choose sedition prosecution?
Why has the government machinery (in the form of the office of the) Attorney-General's Chambers been used for this purpose?
This is abuse of power!
That is why we have to criticise this action against Raja Petra Kamaruddin in the harshest terms."