Activist Fahmi Reza has filed an application to be freed of his charge under Section 233 of the Communications and Multimedia Act (CMA) at the High Court in Kuala Lumpur today.
He has also filed an application to challenge the validity of Section 233, and for it to be declared unconstitutional.
“The charge against me is flawed because it doesn’t say who was offended by the graphic poster,” he said in a Facebook post today, explaining that this was one of the grounds of his application.
Fahmi had previously been charged on June 10 for uploading images ridiculing the country’s leadership on Facebook.
The image was a caricature of a clown-faced Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak which went viral on social media since he first posted it on Feb 8.
In his Facebook post today, Fahmi said that he wanted to challenge Section 233 of CMA because it infringed on his freedom of expression which is protected under the Federal Constitution.
This included the freedom to produce artwork critical of leaders, the freedom to express dissenting views as well as the freedom to use art in the form of political satire as a means of protest, he said.
Not only that, he said, the charge against him was a form of internet censorship which goes against the CMA itself.
His lawyer, Syahredzan Johan, will be handing a copy of the cause papers to the Attorney-General’s Chambers today.
For now, Fahmi said, no date has been set yet for the hearing of his application in court.
The trial dates for the case of the clown-faced poster, however, has been set for the Session Court from Sept 5 to 7, he said.
If convicted under Section 233, Fahmi can be fined up to RM50,000 or jailed up to a year or both.