Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Student activist Safwan refuses bail following sedition charge

An activist said Safwan (seated) was refusing to be released as a sign of protest against the BN administration

Student activist Muhammad Safwan Anang today refused to be released on a RM5,000 bail, choosing to be sent to prison after he was charged under the Sedition Act 1948.

His lawyer, Ariff Azam, said he was surprised at Safwan’s decision, saying that his client wanted to protest against the case in which he was charged this morning with uttering allegedly seditious words at a forum.

“My client Safwan said he’s not ready to come out despite being [bonded]... we are still trying to persuade him.

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“We understand that this is a protest by Safwan against the charge brought against him,” Ariff Azam, one of Safwan’s lawyers, told reporters at the Kuala Lumpur Courts Complex here.

“If we are unable to convince him, this afternoon (he) will be brought to Sungai Buloh. But we are still trying to talk to him,” he added, referring to the Sungai Buloh prison where Safwan will be held if not released on bail.

Safwan’s wife said she had no prior knowledge of the decision but supported her husband’s move.

Activist Badrul Hisham Shaharin, who was also present in court, said the move by Safwan to reject his release on bail was done in protest against the Barisan Nasional (BN) government.

“He is now brought to Sungai Buloh, tonight gather at Sungai Buloh for solidarity,” the Solidariti Anak Muda Malaysia (SAMM) chief said.

Supporters of the SAMM NGO are expected to show up at the prison tonight to show their support for Safwan.

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