By Khairah N. Karim | New Straits Times
Refugee rights activist Heidy Quah Gaik Li has claimed trial to making a Facebook posting on alleged mistreatment of refugees at the Immigration detention centre in Putrajaya.
The 27-year-old who founded Refuge for the Refugees, a non-governmental organisation (NGO), entered the not guilty plea before Sessions Court Judge M. M Edwin Paramjothy today.
According to the charge sheet, Quah had through her Facebook page under the name “Heidy Quah” made an offensive posting with intent to insult others at about 5.30am on June 5, last year.
The posting was later read at the Immigration detention depot’s management division office at the Immigration headquarters in Putrajaya at about 3.30pm on June 10, 2020.
The charge under section 233(1)(a) of the Communications and Multimedia Act 1998 provides a maximum fine of RM50,000 or imprisonment for up to one year, or both.
Deputy public prosecutor Noor Dayana Mohamad proposed a RM7,000 bail to be imposed on the accused.
However, counsel New Sin Yew who represented Quah pleaded for a lower bail saying that his client is an activist and founder of the NGO that has been around for almost 10 years.
He added that Quah had received many awards for her humanitarian work, including the Woman of the Future award.
“I submit that to impose bail at RM7,000 is excessive. I humbly pray for a lesser amount to be imposed which is a sum of RM2,000,” New said.
The court then allowed RM2,000 bail in one surety and fixed Sept 6 for mention.