Civil rights groups have joined forces in a campaign against the recently passed National Security Council (NSC) Bill with the hashtag #TakNakDiktator or #NoDictator.

“And the #TakNakDiktator campaign is launched! Oppose the NSC Bill! Change avatar (on social media), sign petition, write to the senators,” campaign spokesperson, lawyer and activist from the National Human Rights society (Hakam) S Ambiga said today.

Other supporting groups of the campaign include Amnesty Malaysia, Bersih, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram), Lawyers for Liberty (LFL), Centre to Combat Corruption and Cronyism (C4).

“No real democracy would have such a legislation and they would not give this power to one person. This is not about security but about power,” said Ambiga at the launch today.

The NGOs expressed grave concerns regarding the NSC Bill, claiming that it empowers the prime minister to declare an area as a ‘security area’ for a period of six months, and it usurps powers of the Agong who is empowered to declare emergency under Article 150 of the Federal Constitution.

The Bill was passed last week in Parliament. Under Section 18 of the Bill, the eight-member National Security Council would serve as an advisory body to the prime minister to take action against any person, matter or thing that has caused or is likely to cause a security threat to the nation.

Ambiga says the group is attempting to appeal to the Senate to reject, amend or delay the bill and protect democracy in Malaysia.

“We know how the Senate works, we want to bring the Senate to life and appeal to them to protect our democracy,” she said.

By S Neishasa, The Berita Daily