(Bloomberg) -- Malaysia is set to scrap an anti-fake news law that was once used to investigate Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad during his election campaign.
The parliament’s lower house voted to repeal the law a second time, after its first attempt was blocked by the upper house last year. This time, the decision is set to be passed to Malaysia’s king regardless of the upper house’s stance, and the king isn’t expected to deny it.
The law, which carries a punishment of up to 10 years in prison, was passed months before the May 2018 election that saw Malaysia’s first change of government since its independence. It was used to put Mahathir under investigation for saying that a plane due to take him on his campaign trail was tampered, after the Civil Aviation Authority of Malaysia denied any sabotage. The probe was later dropped.
Countries around the region are grappling with ways to prevent disinformation. Singapore pushed through a controversial law against online falsehoods last week, while Indonesia set up a “war room” to crack down on hoaxes.
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