PUTRAJAYA – The Home Ministry has declared the Sarawak Association For Peoples’ Aspiration (SAPA) an illegal organistaion.
Home Ministry (KDN) secretary-general, Datuk Seri Mohamad Khalid Shariff (pic) said the decision was made Friday (Nov 14) according to Section 5 (1) of the Societies Act 1966.
“SAPA is an organisation that carries out activities detrimental to the interests of the security of Malaysia and public order in the country.
“I call on the public to cooperate in efforts by the government to address the activities of SAPA which are deemed to be contrary to existing laws in the interest of national security and public order,” he said in a statement in Putrajaya, Saturday.
Mohamad Khalid said the provision under Section 5 of the Societies Act 1966 (Act 335) empowers the Home Minister to declare an organisation as unlawful.
“Therefore it is legal for the Minister, in his sole discretion, declare as illegal any organisation, its branches or society which in his opinion is or is being used for purposes harmful or contrary to the security interests of the Federation or any place in it, public order or morals,” he said.
Pursuant to this, Mohamad Khalid said nobody can use the name, symbol, crest or logo of SAPA as a society based on Section 7 (3)(b) of the Societies Act 1966.
As such, he said, all bank accounts, assets and properties of SAPA would be confiscated and handed over to the Insolvency Department.
“No one can any longer hold positions, carry out activities as a member, hold meetings of any kind, disseminate information on SAPA or act for or represent SAPA.
“Those responsible for carrying out any SAPA activities will be investigated and charged for committing an offence under Act 335, among them under Section 6 (2) and 6 (3), Section 42 and Section 48 of the Societies Act 1966 and Section 142 of the Penal Code,” he said.
In KUCHING, SAPA president Lina Soo, when contacted by Bernama, said (SAPA) will wait for a letter from the Registrar of Societies (ROS) or the Home Ministry regarding its ‘unlawful’ status as announced by the ministry Saturday, before taking any further action.
Soo said she was surprised by the ministry’s action to issue a statement to the media about the status of SAPA.
She said she would have expected the authorities to inform the association first on the matter before announcing it to the public.
She did not rule out the possibility of preparing a legal team as her next move, but stressed that at the moment she had decided to wait for some confirmation from the authorities before doing anything.
Late Friday night, SAPA in a statement e-mailed to Bernama said the association was approved and registered by the ROS in November 2013, and had been carrying out activities within its stated objectives on a constitutional platform. – Bernama