Intentional or not, fake news spreaders, beware! The Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) force will no longer require an order to investigate (OTI) for offences relating to the spread of fake news.
According to the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Abdul Hamid Bador, the new regulation is listed under the recently issued Emergency (Essential Powers) (No. 2) Ordinance 2021 of the Federal Government Gazette.
The ordinance facilitates further action by the police against any party who creates, publishes or spreads fake news regarding COVID-19 or the Proclamation of Emergency.
“All along, it’s as if the public resents the police for not taking any action or untimely responding towards fake news made viral in social media.
“It’s not that we wanted to be late. In fact, it doesn’t take only five minutes, but up to weeks to obtain an OTI.
“By then, fake news that is left as it is for a week, for instance, will fuel the fire which can lead to quarrels, even physical confrontation, if not handled immediately.
“Thus, with the ordinance, we do not have to wait for the public to lodge police reports.
“Fake news is able to create general uproar, annoyance and displeasure of certain parties. It is considered an offence under Section 505 of the Penal Code.
“Hopefully, the ordinance serves as a deterrent against anyone who attempts to spread fake news in the future.”
He commented so during a media session at the PDRM Air Force Team Training Base (PLPGU) in Ipoh today (March 12), after witnessing the aviator badge presentation ceremony and official closing of the Private Pilot’s Licence (PPL) course.
Also present were the police chief of Perak, Datuk Mior Faridalathrash Wahid and Bukit Aman Department of Internal Security and Public Order (JKDNKA) director, Datuk Seri Abd Rahim Jaafar, among others.