Dissident artist Fahmi Reza has again irked the authorities, this time over a parody poster warning the public that the Malaysian Communications and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) would act against those spreading humiliating pictures of the country's leaders.
MCMC strategic communication division chief Sheikh Raffie Abd Rahman has denied issuing such a warning.
"It's not a MCMC statement, it's a false statement, we do not issue such warning," he told The Malaysian Insider.
The poster uploaded by Fahmi on the social media today shows the word "Amaran" (Warning) in bold letters, with the message "Henti sebar gambar mengaibkan pemimpin negara' (Stop spreading humiliating photos of the country's leaders).
"We are investigating this matter, we will get to the bottom of this but the public should not forward this, the statement is fake," Raffie said.
Fahmi said it was meant as a parody.
"I designed the warning poster, as a piece of political satire and parody to highlight the absurdity behind the warning issued by the government against spreading the clown pictures; that goes against Internet freedom," he said.
The poster reads: "The public is warned to stop spreading photos of the country's leaders that are edited to resemble a clown like in the above photo, on social sites including 'Whatsapp').
"It is an offence to share or spread such contents as it violates country's laws especially Section 233 of Communications and Multimedia Act 1998. If found guilty, fine is not exceeding RM50,000 and/or a maximum one-year jail term".
But Raffie said even without such a statement by the Internet body, the public should not share edited photos of leaders.
Pictures of a clown-faced Datuk Seri Najib Razak have flooded social media in the past few days, after activists rallied behind Fahmi, who was warned by police for posting on Twitter a clown caricature of the prime minister on January 31. – February 8, 2016.
Source from The Malaysian Insider