Sabah opposition member jailed 16 months for insulting Islam

David Orok

(Malay Mail Online) – Politician David Orok was sentenced to 16 months’ jail for sedition by a Sessions Court here over a Facebook post last year that was deemed as against Islam.

The State Reform Party (STAR) politician pleaded guilty today to posting insulting remarks against Prophet Muhammad and Islam on Facebook in July 2014.

According to Orok’s lawyer, Henry Gudid, Sessions Court judge Mohamed Zairi Zainal Abidin in passing the judgement said that the sentence was appropriate given the public interest and sensitive nature of living in a diverse and multicultural society.

Gudid said that his client declined to make any statement.

“He did instruct me to file for appeal,” he said, adding that his application for stay of execution was denied.

Last week, Orok had applied for a plea bargain on the sentence but his application was rejected by the deputy public prosecutor.

“My client then wanted to change his plea from not guilty in order to not prolong the case,” said Gudid.

Orok was last year charged with committing the offence between noon and 1.50pm on July 4 at an unnumbered house in Kg. Roun, Jalan Labuaya, Topokon in Tuaran, under Section 4 (1) (c) of the Sedition Act 1948.

Orok, who had contested the Sulaman state seat in the 2013 general election, was charged before judge Ummu Kalthom Abd Samad at the Sessions Court last September but the case has been pending since.