KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 21 ― The Malaysian Artistes Association (Seniman) president Zed Zaidi and three others were charged at the Magistrate’s Court here today with publishing statements on Facebook and Twitter regarding Covid-19 which are likely to cause fear or alarm to the public, last month.
Zed Zaidi, whose real name is Rozaidi Abdul Jamil, 40, however, pleaded not guilty and claimed trial to the charge after it was read out to him before Magistrate A. Akhiruddin@Boy Acho.
Zed Zaidi was alleged to have committed the offence through his tweet, with the handle @rozaidijamil, at 12:51pm on Jan 27, which was read by the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) in Cyberjaya at 10:30am on Jan 29.
The charge, under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code, carries imprisonment which may extend to two years, or with fine, or both, upon conviction.
The magistrate allowed him bail of RM5,000 and sent March 11 for remention.
On Jan 31, Zed Zaidi was questioned by the MCMC for two hours regarding the report titled “Breaking News: All countries except Malaysia ― All countries have banned Chinese tourist except Malaysia” which he shared on Twitter and Facebook.
At the same court, a company director Mohd Khairul Anuar Rosli, 30, also pleaded not guilty and claimed trial to the same charge.
He was alleged to have spread the fake news on Covid-19 using the ‘Oh My Media’ web application, which was detected by the MCMC at 1:20pm on Jan 27.
Magistrate A. Akhiruddin
Meanwhile, two other men ― a technician Mohd Afendy Mohd Said, 34, and a businessman Syed Mohd Faiz Syed Nasir, 28, ― pleaded guilty to the charge.
Both of them admitted having committed the offence using their Facebook and Twitter which were read by the MCMC on Jan 27.
Magistrate A. Akhiruddin set March 17 for sentencing. ― Bernama