KUALA LUMPUR, July 9 — Parti Amanah Negara urged the police today to conduct an impartial investigation against refugee activist Heidy Quah over her Facebook post on alleged mistreatment of refugees at the Immigration detention centres.
Its communications director Khalid Abd Samad said that the public should be given the chance to air their views and opinions responsibly, as government agencies are funded by taxpayers.
“Without denying the need for the police to conduct an investigation after receiving a report, Amanah calls for a professional and fair investigation as it involves allegations of slander against a government body.
“The people should be given the freedom to express their views and opinions, responsibly, to any government agency in the discharge of their duties. This is because government agencies are funded by tax from the people,” he said in a statement today.
Quah, director of Refuge For The Refugees, was called up by the police on Tuesday following a police report made by the Immigration Department over her Facebook post which detailed the alleged mistreatment of refugees in Immigration detention centres.
She is being investigated under Section 500 of the Penal Code for defamation, and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 for improper use of network facilities or network service
Khalid said that Amanah is concerned with the use of laws to conceal the weaknesses and failures of a government agency, saying such practices would only cause the public fear improvement, therefore disrupting the well-being of the nation.
He said Amanah proposed that the Immigration Department take proactive steps to rebut Quah’s report by establishing an independent body to review and publish an open report on the actual situation inside the detention centres.
“It's an easy question to deal with because just by posting pictures of real situations, false and slanderous allegations can be answered.
“Immigration Department can then sue the complainant for false reports and slander,” he said.