KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 3 — A video clip being shared online of a man giving a racial speech and referring to a planned rally on December 8 is a four-year-old video clip that has resurfaced again, the Inspector-General of Police (IGP) Tan Sri Acryl Sani Abdullah Sani said today.
Referring to the 2.20-minute-long video on the TikTok platform, the IGP said checks have shown that this video was recorded in 2018 when the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (ICERD) was an issue, and that the December 8 rally mentioned in the video had taken place in protest of this treaty.
“The rally that was meant is the anti-ICERD rally which was held on December 8, 2018 at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur. That video has been made viral again by irresponsible quarters with the intention of inciting public anger and confusion, as if there is a rally that will be held on December 8, 2022,” he said in a statement.
“As of now, there is no information about rallies which will be held by anyone on December 8, 2022 as sought to be portrayed,” he added.
The IGP stressed the police’s commitment to ensure public safety, adding that the police will take firm action if anyone was found to be holding any rally or marches in open spaces that may threaten public peace.
The police also advised the public to not further spread this video if they have received it, saying that the cooperation of responsible social media users was necessary to prevent fake news from spreading.
The IGP also said anyone found to have spread the video could face action under Section 505(b) of the Penal Code and Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act.
Section 505(b) includes the offence of making, publishing or circulating of any statement, rumour or report with the intention to cause fear or alarm to the public, and can be punished with up to two years’ jail or fine or both upon conviction.
Section 233 covers the offence of improper use of network facilities or network service, which is punishable upon conviction with a maximum one-year jail term or a maximum RM50,000 fine or both, and a further RM1,000 fine for every day during which the offence is continued after conviction.
The December 8, 2018 rally was initially planned to protest against the Pakatan Harapan government’s plans to ratify or adopt ICERD — which is an international agreement to stop racial discrimination.
After the government decided against ratifying ICERD in the face of objections from Malay Muslim groups, the rally featuring Umno and PAS supporters was rebranded as a “thanksgiving” rally.