AG pursuing charges against Nik Nazmi despite repeated acquittals

The Seri Setia assemblyman’s lawyers said they received the notice of appeal today and are now waiting for the Shah Alam High Court to inform them of the date for the hearing. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa
The Seri Setia assemblyman’s lawyers said they received the notice of appeal today and are now waiting for the Shah Alam High Court to inform them of the date for the hearing. — Picture by Yusof Mat Isa

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KUALA LUMPUR, May 21 —The Attorney-General’s Chambers is seeking to reinstate the same charge against Selangor deputy Speaker Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad deemed unconstitutional by the Court of Appeal and which lower courts have struck out, twice.

The Seri Setia assemblyman’s lawyers said they received the notice of appeal today and are now waiting for the Shah Alam High Court to inform them of the date for the hearing.

In May, the Sessions Court twice struck out charges against Nik Nazmi for an offence under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012. On both occasions, the court cited a ruling by the Court of Appeal, which said that Section 9(5) of the PAA — that criminalises failure to comply with provisions under the Act — is unconstitutional.

The AG is also appealing the Court of Appeal decision at Malaysia’s highest court.

Latheefa Koya, one of Nik Nazmi’s lawyers, said the AG wants the initial charge against Nik Nazmi — for failing to give police a 10-day notice for organising the Black 505 rally in Kelana Jaya last year — to be reinstated.

“It’s crazy. This has never been done before. We don’t know what the AG is up to, but you can’t do that... there is still no decision (by the Federal Court),” Latheefa told the Malay Mail Online when contacted.

Lawyers for Liberty, an advocacy group, said it is dismayed by the AG’s actions, which pays no regard to “basic principles of law including judicial precedent.”

“The AG’s Chambers must stop this obsession to undermine the Court of Appeal’s decision through unfair tactics and arguments that can only bring disrepute into the administration of justice,” it said.

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