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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Preemptive intimidation

So, the police have started their campaign of 'preemptive arrests'. There were activists arrested in various towns/cities yesterday, ostensibly for distributing 'inflammatory material'. As many have already commented, the suggestion that material recommending electoral reform is inflammatory is ludicrous. This is more so in light of YB Nazri's recent observations about our sedition laws being outdated.

And if it is incitement that the police are worried about, then there are more stark instances that are deserving of attention.

The police campaign appears to be aimed more at intimidation, apparently on the misconceived basis that this is a legitimate means to preserving public order. It is not, simply because every one has the right to dissent and express such dissent. This is something that the police appear to recognise; demonstrations and marches have been permitted in recent history, more notably when they involve causes that run consistent with the politics of the Government.

When the police want to, they are fully capable of allowing mass gatherings and controlling public order. Just google "Kuala Lumpur road closures". Even as I write this there are hordes of people running past my office. They're not running from anyone or anything, they're involved in a marathon of sorts. Roads have been closed for this event, as HAKAM members trying to get to my office for our AGM have found out to their consternation.

The preemptive police campaign is inflaming a situation that politics has made tense. What started out as a peaceful expression of unhappiness over the electoral process has now become, to paraphrase the Deputy Prime Minister, a threat to national security. He is concerned that the BERSIH Rally will send the wrong signals to the international community, in particular investors. Well, we might ask the Deputy Prime Minister, what sort of signal does mass arrests send?



Shamsul Yunos said...

Malik, asking for fair election is fine butinciting people by saying elections in Malaysia are all unfair is dangerous, if ALL election in this country are run unfairly and the results illegal, adk pakatan to give up all seats ans states that they have won thru illegal elections,
Fact is election in Malaysia as fair as anywhere, anomalies ecist everywhere, george w bush was put into offic by the supreme court due to florida snafu

There are reps from all parties at all stages to ensure number of votes tally and yet none of them spotted phantom voters or cheats?

Just serve the people and stop politicising everything anfbyou will gain respect, votes and maybe one day the heavy burden of governing the country

Dont be in such a rush to get power, its not an easy job

Tiger said...

If elections were fair in our country, PR would've been in power in 2008, and our country would not be in the quagmire it is in now.