KUALA LUMPUR, March 13 — The kill switch function in concerts will only be employed in worst-case scenarios or as a last resort, Communications Minister Fahmi Fadzil said.

He said the mechanism was introduced to prevent violations of the country’s laws from recurring, besides being an element to prevent untoward incidents.

“The kill switch mechanism was initially proposed to be used by concert organisers following the incident involving The 1975 band at the Good Vibes Festival in 2023.

“This incident was the first involving an artiste during a performance and was the only one out of 344 approved performances in 2023,” he said when winding up the debate on the Motion of Thanks for the Royal Address for his ministry today.

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Fahmi said the mechanism is also being considered for inclusion in the guidelines of the Central Agency for Application of Filming and Performance by Foreign Artistes (Puspal) currently being amended.

He said this will help improve understanding, especially for new concert organisers, to make thorough preparations, taking into account potential negative incidents that may occur during the event.

Fahmi said that the government had reduced entertainment duties from 25 per cent to 10 per cent for foreign artiste performances in 2024, as part of efforts to attract more of them to perform in Malaysia.

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He also said that the proposed amendments to the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 (Act 588) have been finalised in terms of policy, and subsequently approved by the Cabinet on March 8.

On efforts to tackle fake news and 3R (race, religion, royalty) issues, Fahmi said laws in place, Section 505 of Act 574 and Section 233 of Act 588 among others, were still relevant for regulatory and enforcement action.

“Firm cooperation between enforcement agencies such as the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) is consistently strengthened based on both Acts 574 and 588 to ensure the issue of fake news and 3R content can be promptly addressed,” he said.

He said the MCMC is committed to providing technical assistance to the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) in conducting transparent investigations based on guidelines, procedures, and provisions under Act 588 to ensure the principles of the law are justly enforced. — Bernama