PRESS STATEMENT (23 NOVEMBER 2016): The Deputy Home Minister must answer for Maria’s SOSMA detention

BERSIH 2.0 criticises Nur Jazlan Mohamed’s refusal to comment on BERSIH 2.0 chairperson, Maria Chin Abdullah’s, detention under SOSMA by hiding behind a cowardly sub judice excuse. (

Sub judice or “under judicial consideration” is no longer relevant in our context as it was used in trial by jury. Cases are now heard by judges who are trained experts who cannot be swayed or influenced by public opinion. It does not preclude the disclosure of facts and fair comment especially if it is matter of public interest. Maria’s unfair detention under SOSMA and her treatment as a terrorist is not just a national issue but has attracted international attention.

It is irresponsible for Nur Jazlan, especially in his capacity as Deputy Home Minister, to continue avoiding questions on the issue by citing sub judice which does not even apply. He is putting on a public show while allowing a crime to continue taking place as Maria’s detention is unlawful.

We are only asking a simple question: Why is Maria being detained?

BERSIH 2.0 demands the authorities provide a valid basis for detaining Maria, a civil society leader, under SOSMA and for her immediate release.

We will continue to gather at Dataran Merdeka at 8pm every night in solidarity with Maria until she is released.

#BebasMaria #MansuhSOSMA

Signed by the BERSIH 2.0 Steering Committee members