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Thread: Politics: Bangkit 112 - Ambiga BERSIH 2.0 Message

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Politics: Bangkit 112 - Ambiga BERSIH 2.0 Message

    Ambiga BERSIH 2.0 Message:

    Message From Bersih /
    Ambiga Sreenevasan

    My friends, why are we here today?

    Why have we chosen to give up our Saturday to gather here? Together. Again.

    The answer is, we love our country. We care about Malaysia. We care about Malaysians. Our children, our parents, their future, our future.

    And more importantly we are here because we have hope. We think that a better Malaysia is within our grasp. We know it is. I know it is. And it is all because of you – a rakyat that cares enough to do something about achieving a bright future for our country.

    As far as Bersih 2.0 is concerned, we just want clean and fair elections. If there is to be change in the leadership, we want to do it through the ballot box. Our objectives are clear and clean and fair. Our message to all the political parties is : respect our rights as citizens, honour our vote, and, give us clean and fair elections!

    Yet I have unhappy news – by all accounts, GE 13 will be far from clean, and fair. I will not go into the details, many of you know them. The recent fiasco with the overseas voters is yet another example. The suggested process is not clean, not transparent and the conditions that have been imposed on overseas voters are not, in my view, constitutional.

    So why am I so sure the election will not be clean and fair? Well, one of the easiest demands to fulfil is to give free and fair access to the media to all parties. It takes just a phone call. Yet we see no move towards that and the mainstream media continues with its skewed and often dishonest reports. It shows a complete lack of political will to even the playing field between the parties.

    Does that mean however, that we throw in the towel? That we walk away in despair? On the contrary, Bersih has two important projects that we have launched which we believe will make a difference in the next elections.

    The first is our project called PEMANTAU, a citizens’ observer mission. This is not a new concept as it has been carried out in numerous countries. Studies have found that citizen observer missions can reduce political violence and fraud. We are excited about this project and we are looking out for approximately 10,000 volunteers to help us cover 30 – 40% of the total number of constituencies.

    The second project is to bring out the vote. (Keluar mengundi, lawan penipuan). Although our voter turn out is high, a higher turn out will help to mitigate fraud to some extent. Both these projects need your help and your input. Both are projects of the people, for the people and by the people.

    So there is much work to be done. And we can all be involved to ensure as far as possible, that fraud and discrepancies can be minimised in the 13th GE. Knowing the rakyat I know you will rise to the occasion as the nation calls to you to take part in its future. As that famous song goes, my fellow Malaysians, “This is it”!!


    我的朋友 今天我們為什麼會在這裡?


    答案是,我們愛我們的國家.我們關愛馬來西亞. 我們關心馬來西亞人. 我們的孩子,我們的父母,關乎他們、我們的未來.

    重要的是,我們懷有希望 .我們知道一個更好的馬來西亞在我們掌握之中。

    我相信的,我知道到的。這全是因為您—是您願意為我們的國家付出來讓我們對將來有個明亮的盼望。對我們淨盟 2.0來說, 我們只是盼望看見乾淨和公平的選舉。透過選票來替換領袖。我們的目的是透明的、乾淨的和公平的。 對 參政者和政黨說,請尊重我們公民的權力,敬重我們的選票,給我們公平和乾淨的選舉。

    我亦有令人不快樂的消息, 第十三屆大選將是不公平和乾淨的。我不想提細節,我相信您已心中有數。特別對海外選民的情況,按照國家憲法已經是不公平了。這正是我說的選舉將不會是公平和乾淨的。


    第一是計劃是 PEMANTAU,是公民的守察團.這不是新鮮之事,在其他國家已是很普篇。這是可以減低選舉的欺騙和欺壓。對於這使命我們心中感到非常興奮而我們也需要約一萬人參與作自願團。

    第二項計劃是鼓勵人民出來投票 (Keluar mengundi, lawan
    penipuan). 雖然我們有多人出來投票,更多的人將減少欺騙的可能。



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Politics: Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat - HKR

    Saturday, 12 January 2013 00:28

    All set for historic Stadium Merdeka: Towards a responsible society WITHOUT FEAR

    Written by Maria Begum, Malaysia Chronicle
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    UPDATED IT'S ALL SYSTEMS GO for the #KL112 or Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat rally, which will take place at the Stadium Merdeka on Saturday as planned despite an 11th-hour attempt by the police to get the organizers to to shift to another venue in Bukit Jalil.

    Eight routes have been planned for rally supporters to meet at - Amcorp Mall in Petaling Jaya; Masjid Arrahman in UM; Brickfields; KLCC; Kelab Sultan Sulaiman; Pasar Seni; Jalan Sultan and Masjid Negara.

    Pakatan Rakyat leaders, many of whom stayed up until way past midnight last night, to sort out the details are expecting a "monster crowd".

    "Yes, Anwar Ibrahim, Lim Kit Siang and Hadi Awang will be up there on the main stage with the NGOs but this is actually a show by our civil society and activists - the anti-Lynas group, the oil royalty group, BERSIH, the free education and mother-tongue activists - to go national with their messages and demands for reform. It is not a political rally," Rafizi Ramli, the PKR strategy director told Malaysia Chronicle.

    "For us, we want to show that if we win GE13, this is the type of environment we want to offer Malaysians - an open and responsible society where the people are free to engage with each other, civil society with government, poltiicians, police, the authorities peacefully and civilly. Not like now where the government actively indulges in scare-mongering its own citizens, where the people have to live in fear and dare not speak up because they are afraid to offend the Umno-BN big shots."

    A monster crowd and wiser police force?

    The PKR leader does not expect a repeat of last year's BERSIH 3.0 where the demonstrators were beaten up and brutalized by the police. He points to a late night statement issued by the police that had riled up rally supporters.

    "If you look at the 'body language' of the statement, it's like the police telling Umno, OK you asked us to stop it and we tried. But that's it. There is no order at all to the organisers to move to Bukit Jalil or anywhere else. The police have become smarter. This time, they agreed to sign in black and white with the organisers all the terms and conditions. They cannot U-turn, they have pledged to guard the safety of the people as they should in the first place. So even though there may be provocateurs and gung-ho Umno ruffians out to spoil our day, I am confident the police can stay on top of things."

    Indeed, the police were made scapegoats for orders believed to have been put out by Prime Minister Najib Razak and his cousin, Home Minister Hishamuddin Hussein, that ended up with brutal attacks on the BERSIH demonstrators. The protest for free and fair elections was a disaster for the police who took a huge battering in their image and are still trying to regain the confidence of the people.

    Sour grapes

    On Thursday night, Kuala Lumpur police chief Mohmad Salleh threw a spanner into the works when he said that the rally should be shifted to the Bukit Jalil Stadium, which has a seating capacity of 100,000 compared to Stadium Merdeka's 30,000.

    “In view of the organiser’s goal of gathering one million participants, it is logical to hold the rally at Stadium Nasional Bukit Jalil,” Mohamad Salleh had said in his statement.

    The police chief's comments were immediately panned by the rally organizers and supporters, who have been planing and looking forward to Saturday's peaceful assembly.

    "This is pure sour grapes. We already have an agreement with the police, what we have to comply with and what the police need to carry. To shoot off a late statement like that is bad faith and typifies the Umno-BN culture of not being able to keep its word," PKR MP for Batu Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.

    "Maybe some of the Umno-BN hardcore right wing are having cold feet, but this will only reflect badly on them. Just like in Bersih 3.0, where DBKL was used to create trouble over the Dataran Merdeka venue and and in Bersih 2.0 where Prime Minister Najib Razak disgraced himself reneging on his earlier agreement to let the protesters use Stadium Merdeka."

    In black and white

    Tian's views were corroborated by PAS deputy president Mohamad Sabu, who pointed out that an agreement with the police had been reached and even inked, with both parties agreeing to the event venue and certain security conditions posed on rally organisers.

    “No police order issued asking us to move. I have spoken to the Dang Wangi OCPD (officer in charge of a police district) and it was a good discussion, and everything is in order. Our assembly will be at Stadium Merdeka,” Mat Sabu was reported as saying by the Malaysian Insider.

    Historic rally

    Saturday's rally due to begin at 2.00pm and end at 5.00pm will see the involvement of the country's top civil society movements which have been pushing for various demands through the years.

    Rally organisers target a turnout of one million people at the rally which is expected to be coloured by the BERSIH's signature yellow, the anti-Lynas' flourescent green, the Pakatan Rakyat women's purple and so forth.

    Police had on Tuesday pledged to facilitate the mammoth event, which the Pakatan Rakyat helped to organize and have in turn promised to ensure that it would be peaceful.

    "Not to worry, we will stick by the rules very closely. There should not be trouble as the police have already promised to control the crowd, which is their job in the first place. So feel free to come. It will be a very historic occassion," said Tian.
    Malaysia Chronicle

    1. Amcorp Mall, Petaling Jaya
    Laluan: Lebuhraya Persekutuan – Jalan Pantai Baharu – Jalan Pantai – Jalan Bangsar – Jalan Brickfields – Jalan Tun Sambanthan – Stadium Merdeka
    Komander: Ust Nasruddin Tantawi, Shamsul Iskandar, Sany Hamzan.

    2. Masjid Arrahman, UM
    Laluan: Jalan Pantai – Jalan Bangsar – Jalan Brickfields – Jalan Tun Sambanthan – Stadium Merdeka
    Komander: Nurul Izzah, Ng Suee Lim, Safwan Anang, Adam Adli, Raja Iskandar.

    3. Brickfields
    Laluan: Jalan Brickfields – Jalan Tun Sambanthan – Stadium Merdeka
    Komander: Raja Ratnam, Faizal, Arutchelvan, Zunar - Kartunis, Maria Chin, M. Kula Segaran.

    4. KLCC
    Laluan: Jalan Ampang – Lebuh Ampang – Jalan H.S. Lee – Jalan Tun Siew Sin – Jalan Petaling – Jalan Sultan – Stadium Merdeka
    Komander: Dato’ Husam Musa, Teo Kok Seong, Mazlan Aliman, Zairil Khir Johari.

    5.Kelab Sultan Sulaiman
    Laluan: Jalan Abdul Razak – Jalan Raja Abdullah – Jalan Ampang – Lebuh Ampang – Jalan H.S. Lee – Jalan Tun Siew Sin – Jalan Petaling – Jalan Sultan – Stadium Merdeka
    Komander: Badrul Hisham (CheGu Bard)

    6. Pasar Seni
    Laluan: Jalan H.S Lee – Jalan Sultan – Stadium Merdeka.
    Komander: Dr. Siti Mariah, Teresa, Teo Nie Ching, Elizabeth Wong.

    7.Jalan Sultan
    Laluan: Jalan Hang Jebat – Stadium Merdeka.
    Komander: Fuziah Salleh, Ishak Surin, Wong Tack, Tan Kok Wai.

    8. Masjid Negara
    Laluan: Bulatan KTM – Jalan Sulaiman – Jalan Maharajalela – Stadium Merdeka.

    Komander: Khalid Samad, Azmin Ali, Dr Mujahid Yusuf Rawa.


    Pakaian yang selesa untuk bergerak termasuk alas kaki/kasut yang sesuai.

    Pakaian bersih dalam beg – untuk ditukar jika terkena bahan kimia.

    Baju hujan boleh dibawa dan digunakan untuk melindungi diri dari cecair kimia (jika ada) termasuk pelindung kepala dan cermin mata keselamatan (shatter resistant eye protection).


    Bawa air mineral/minuman secukupnya untuk diminum. Kami mencadangkan 2-3 botol air mineral/minuman 500 ml.

    Sapu tangan bersaiz besar atau tuala kecil. Basahkan dan tutup mulut/hidung dengannya sekiranya gas dilepaskan.
    Makanan seperti coklat, snek makanan ringan.

    Jika anda ada masalah kesihatan serius seperti masalah jantung dan paru-paru, kami menasihati anda mengelakkan diri dari menghadiri perhimpunan ini.

    Jika anda ada masalah kesihatan yang terkawal dan mahu menyertai perhimpunan, pastikan bawa ubat-ubatan preskripsi anda untuk bekalan sekurang-kurangnya sehari termasuk alat inhaler untuk pesakit asma.

    Topeng muka (surgical mask) boleh dibawa.

    Bawalah wang saku yang mencukupi untuk makanan, pengangkutan, telefon dan sebagainya sekadar perlu.


    Rehat, makan dan minum secukupnya sebelum perhimpunan. Walaupun kita berniat untuk berhimpun secara aman, kita tidak dapat mengagak tindak balas dari mereka yang cuba menghalang perhimpunan.

    Sertailah perhimpunan secara berkumpulan dengan rakan/keluarga yang mengenali anda, dan mengetahui masalah kesihatan anda sekiranya ada. Jangan bergerak bersendirian.

    Jangan pakai pelembap kulit berasaskan minyak kerana ia boleh mengakibatkan bahan kimia terperangkap lama.

    Jangan pakai kanta pelekap (contact lenses) yang juga boleh memerangkap bahan kimia di mata.


    Tanda-tanda terkena bahan kimia:

    * Pedih di mata, hidung, mulut dan kulit
    * Pandangan kabur, dan air mata keluar berlebihan
    * Cecair hidung keluar secara berlebihan
    * Batuk dan sesak nafas
    * Pening

    Tanda-tanda di atas hanya sementara. Ketidakselesaan pada mata akibat gas pemedih mata akan hilang selepas 5-30 minit, manakala kesan ‘pepper spray’ memerlukan 20 minit-2 jam.

    Bagaimana menghadapinya:

    BERTENANG. Jangan panik. Ingat, ia hanya kesan sementara.

    Hembus hidung, kumur mulut & elakkan daripada menelan. “JANGAN SAPU MUKA”

    Sekiranya gas pemedih mata dilepaskan, cuba elak daripada mengikut arah angin.

    Sila dapatkan bantuan sukarelawan ‘Pasukan Perubatan’ yang berada di sekitar kawasan perhimpunan dengan segera sekiranya anda memerlukan bantuan perubatan.

    Jika anda seorang pengamal perubatan, bantuan anda kepada yang memerlukan amat dihargai.

    * Maklumat ini sekadar panduan kepada peserta. Ia hanya maklumat umum, dan tidak sepatutnya menafikan pandangan pakar perubatan yang merawat anda, atau pakar perubatan yang lain.

    Segala risiko kesihatan yang mungkin berlaku semasa perhimpunan adalah atas tanggungjawab anda sendiri.

    - Sekritariat HKR

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Berjalan Bersama AMK Demi Kebebasan, Keadilan dan Demokrasi


    Friday, 11 January 2013 admin-s

    8 rally points for #KL112

    Angkatan Muda Keadilan Malaysia (AMK) mengalu-alukan keputusan untuk membenarkan Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat (HKR) berlangsung di Stadium Merdeka pada 12 Januari 2013. Keputusan yang bersejarah tersebut merupakan kejayaan kuasa rakyat yang sentiasa berjuang untuk berhimpun serta hak untuk mengguna ruang awam untuk bersuara sejak zaman Reformasi lagi.

    AMK menyokong sepenuhnya Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat serta 8 tuntutan rakyat yang melibatkan seluruh aspeks kepentingan rakyat tanpa mengira kaum, agama dan jantina. HKR akan menjadi satu detik bersejarah di mana seluruh rakyat Malaysia bangkit dan semangat kemerdekaan daripada penindasan, kezaliman serta kemiskinan.

    Dengan itu, AMK akan mengadakan Berjalan Demi Kebebasan, Keadilan dan Demokrasi pada Sabtu ini sempena HKR. AMK yang diketuai oleh Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin akan berjalan dari Padang Timur, Petaling Jaya (PJ), depan Amcorp Mall ke Stadium Merdeka bersama-sama dengan anak-anak muda.

    Berikut adalah perjalanan yang akan dilalui oleh AMK pada 12 Januari 2013 (Sabtu):-

    8.00am – Berkumpul di Padang Timur, PJ (Depan Amcorp Mall)

    9.00am – Berjalan menuju ke Masjid Ar-Rahman Universiti Malaya (UM)

    11.00am – Bergabung dengan mahasiswa dan anak muda di UM di Masjid Ar-Rahman

    12.30pm – Bergabung dengan peserta HKR di Stesyen Monorail Tun Sambahtan, Brickfield untuk berjalan ke Stadium Merdeka

    1.30pm – Sampai di Stadium Merdeka untuk gegarkan #KL112

    AMK mengajak orang ramai untuk menyertai Berjalan Demi Kebebasan, Keadilan dan Demokrasi pada Sabtu ini. Dengan berjalan kaki ke Stadium Merdeka, semangat perjuangan bersama rakyat serta tekad kebangkitan rakyat untuk menuntut 8 tuntutan rakyat dapat ditunjukkan.

    Sementara itu, tiga Pasukan Pertolongan Kecemasan akan bersedia untuk membantu semua peserta di sepanjang perjalanan. Semua peserta diseru untuk mengikut arahan penganjur serta pasukan keselamatan. Jangan terperdaya dengan pelbagai maklumat dan propaganda hitam yang disebarkan oleh pihak yang tidak bertanggungjawab.

    Keselamatan peserta serta perjalanan yang lancar adalah diutamakan untuk mencapai matlamat yang ditetapkan. Dengan sikap yang disiplin dan tertib, AMK yakin HKR akan berjaya dilangsungkan dengan semangat kebangkitan rakyat yang mengubah lanskap politik serta mencatat sejarah di Malaysia.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    People's Uprising Rally picture gallery

    SATURDAY, JANUARY 12, 2013 - 15:20

    by The Malay Mail Team


    THE Malay Mail's team of photographers – SHAHIR OMAR, RAZAK GHAZALI, ASHRAF SHAMSUL AZLAN, FIRDAUS LATIFand ARIF KARTONO – bring you the rally in pictures. Journalist – IKRAM ISMAIL also contributes to the telling of the story, in pictures, here.


  5. #5
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    Oct 2008

  6. #6
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    Oct 2008

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Solidarity In London – Please Return To Help Monitor Fair Elections

    12 Jan 2013
    Outside Downing Street – the message to the British PM is that Malaysian expect free elections too, not rigged elections.
    Inspired by news that half a million people had successfully made their point earlier in the day in the Merdeka Stadium and all over KL, a solid troupe of Malaysian nationals braved the cold snap to march from Trafalgar Square to Downing Street and then the Westminster Parliament today.
    They waved banners and flags, chanted calls for clean elections and read out the speech by Bersih’s Ambiga Sreenevasen calling for Malaysian nationals abroad to return for the election and help participate in observing the elections – the so-called ‘Citizen Election Observers’.
    The cheerful group were accompanied by a couple of low key police officers, who came in very handy in holding back the traffic as they crowded into Whitehall.
    The demonstrators were particularly pleased and happy that the news had come through of similar police restraint in KL, proving that a peaceful demonstration can take place go off without incident as long as the ‘forces of law and order’ have not been encouraged to get tough and beat people up.
    Helping hand – the police hold back the traffic as marchers walk across Trafalgar Square and into Whitehall
    Message to the British Government
    The posters being waved signalled a very simple series of messages, which British official observers would do well to consider.
    Britain and Malaysia have been visibly cosying up over the past several months, notably since the current government arrived in Downing Street.
    It is a deliberate policy that would appear to suit interests on both sides. Najib is looking for international credibility, while the British are seeking lucrative foreign deals to help make up for a floundering economic strategy.
    The UK Prime Minister, David Cameron put it this way when he hastened out to Malaysia last year:
    “This is the first time that a British Prime Minister has come to Malaysia in almost 20 years. It has been a period, as you have charitably put it Prime Minister, of benign neglect, and I am determined to put that right. So, my message today is very simple: the era of benign neglect is over. Britain is back: back to do business with Malaysia, back to build our partnership on vital global issues. We started that conversation in Downing Street with your visit, we’ve continued it today, and it is just the start of a much refreshed and reinvigorated relationship that we both want to see between our two countries”.[David Cameron, speaking in Kuala Lumpur 12/4/2012]
    Don’t do deals with a dirty government.
    Part of this ‘much refreshed and reinvigorated relationship’ appears to focus on a bi-lateral arms deal being negotiated by BAE systems for the sale of Typhoon Jets.
    It is a deal that may be sweetened by the gift of a significant number of second hand jets being retired from the Royal Airforce, as part of a series of UK Defence cutbacks that have less than delighted many in the armed services.
    A Free Trade agreement is also being negotiated with the European Union and clearly other bi-lateral deals are being aggressively pursued by the British as well and they are throwing everything they can at the project. Visits by politicians, visits by Royalty and return visits too, according to Britain’s High Commissioner:
    “It has certainly been a significant year for Ministerial visits, which I gather were pretty rare at Cabinet level during the terms of office of my predecessors but are now well and truly back on the agenda. Prime Minister Najib and five senior Cabinet members visited the UK last July as a guest of the British government.

    This was reciprocated only 9 months later by the visit in April by Prime Minister Cameron with the Trade and Higher Education Ministers and 35 business people. We have also had visits here by the Defence Secretary, Gerald Howarth (twice), Lord Green, and by Baroness Warsi, the Cabinet Minister and co-Chairman of the Conservative Party.

    In the opposite direction there was a second visit to the UK by Prime Minister Najib last month, and several other Cabinet ministers have visited including Foreign Minister Anifah.

    In the immediate future I know that at least two senior Malaysian Ministers will be visiting the Farnborough Airshow in the UK next month. The last twelve months have also seen an unprecedented number of Royal visits in both directions..”[ Simon Featherstone, British High Commissioner 26/6/2012].

    By Nelson’s column – Malaysians want the same freedoms as the British, supposedly guaranteed by the British at independence.

    Today’s message was clear enough from the Malaysian marchers in London. Deals with the BN government should not come at the expense of the freedom and good government of the Malaysian people.

    If the UK stands accused of ignoring Malaysia’s rampant corruption as it stampedes to do business again, the banners were reminders of other issues that negotiators and diplomats should be raising.

    “Widespread Election Fraud In Malaysia”; Malaysian Government Most Corrupt In the World; Free The Malaysian Press; Clean The Electoral Roll were just some of the blunt demands.
    The same matters will be raised again in the British Parliament next week. when the NGO Suaram and Clean Elections Campaigner, Ambiga Sreenevasen will be meeting decision-makers and MPs and informing them about Malaysia’s growing democracy deficit and corruption index.
    What is the UK doing to encourage election monitoring in Malaysia?

    Britain’s previous period of cosy trade with Malaysia ended with the Pergau Dam “Arms for Aid” Scandal, a deal between the then Defence Minister, one Najib Razak, and a number of current high-profile conservatives.

    It is a cautionary episode that the British would do well to keep in mind and a new bookhas just been published, detailing the whole blundering affair.

    The same Najib Razak, now Prime Minister, was also of course the man involved in pulling together the Scorpene Submarine deal that is now enmeshed in a hundred million euro kickback and murder scandal, currently being examined in a court case in France.

    History suggests the UK might do well to tread more carefully and less eagerly when it comes to trading relations with the country that has now reached Number 3 in the illegal capital outflow index and to listen harder to the calls for freedom and democracy from the people who want to clean up their government.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    KL rally ends with election pledge

    UPDATED @ 12:12:39 AM 13-01-2013
    By Boo Su-Lyn and Md Izwan
    January 12, 2013
    The People’s Uprising Rally (Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat) ended peacefully without any incidents with a pledge by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim that a Pakatan Rakyat federal government will have zero tolerance for corruption. – Photo by Choo Choy May

    KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 – The Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat rally in the capital city ended this evening with a pledge by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim that a Pakatan Rakyat (PR) federal government will have zero tolerance for corruption or any attempt to plunder the people’s wealth.Anwar, who has said that the coming 13th general election will be his last shot at power, told the sea of people gathered at and around the iconic Stadium Merdeka that if the government stopped stealing from its own citizens, the country could finally prosper.

    “If we have to paddle on our own, we shall do so with our very own hands, our fingers. We will not compromise when it comes to corruption and robbing the people.

    “Ladies and gentlemen, to me, this is most crucial. If we can control it, the people’s lives can change and the welfare and livelihood of Malaysians nationwide, from Perlis to Sabah, up to Putrajaya, will be improved,” he said.

    Anwar was the last to speak at today’s mammoth gathering, which is possibly the largest mass gathering the nation has seen in years.

    Police had estimated the crowd inside the stadium at 80,000 but later retracted it, saying it was a “technical mistake”. Thousands others crowded outside the stadium and several roads ringing the area.

    The PR de facto leader did not mince his words as he addressed the excited sea of rally participants who were all decked in a myriad of colours to represent their respective causes.

    He told them that he “understands” their daily suffering and has seen it for himself, lamenting against what he labelled as mismanagement by the current Barisan Nasional (BN) administration.

    “Ladies and gentlemen, I have seen it for myself, the spirit of the people, and I can feel it, the suffering of the people.. I know of your anger.

    “Therefore, we in PR, can make a pledge with the purest of hearts, that under our rule, we will not permit stealing from the people or corruption,” he said.

    The Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat (People’s Uprising Rally) was organised by both political leaders from PR and non-partisan members of various civil society groups as a final showcase of election issues before the 13th general election is called by June.

    DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng told the crowd that BN was wrong in saying that only the Malays could fight for the Malays, Chinese for the Chinese and Indians for Indians.

    “Whether we are Malays, Chinese, Indians, Ibans or Kadazans, we can all take care of each other,” he said.

    Lim, who is also the Penang chief minister, said that Malaysia’s independence was proclaimed in Stadium Merdeka on August 31, 1957.

    “We need a new independence, not from colonial rule, but from poverty. We promise to free Malaysia from corruption. We want to free Malaysia from abuse of power. We don’t want a repeat of (Ahmad) Sarbaini (Mohamed), (A.) Kugan and Teoh Beng Hock,” he said, referring to the custodial deaths of the three men.

    PAS president Datuk Seri Abdul Hadi Awang said that PR’s clean governance was evident in Selangor, Penang, Kedah and Kelantan.

    “The people must be brave... let us declare a second independence,” he said.

    “Ubah sekarang (Change now),” shouted Abdul Hadi, as the crowd cried out “Allahu Akhbar.”

    The politicians’ speeches were frequently interrupted with cheers, applause and the sounding of air horns from the massive crowd.

    PKR secretary-general Datuk Saifuddin Nasution Ismail led the participants in reading a pledge to claim the following: a free and fair election; the restoration of Felda’s reputation; Sabah and Sarawak to be given the same status as peninsular Malaysia; 20 per cent oil royalties to petroleum-producing states; to raise the professionalism of civil servants like teachers and the security forces; a clean environment; to uphold Bahasa Malaysia, protect native languages and improve the English language; to release all political prisoners immediately, to defend traditional villages and places of heritage; and a better life for women.

    Anwar ended his speech by shouting “Merdeka” repeatedly and pumping the air with his fist, while the crowd shouted “Rakyat” in response.

    The historic stadium was packed with people filling the bleachers and the field.

    They were predominantly Malay dressed mostly in canary yellow and lime green, waving PAS, PKR, and DAP flags, as well as the Malaysian, Sabah, Sarawak, Penang and Selangor flags.

    Yellow signified electoral reforms, green for environmental causes, bright red for pro-oil royalty groups, orange for the anti-Felda Global Venture Holdings (FGVH) listing movement, and purple for women’s rights.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2008

    Pakatan takes a stab at Umno's 'Merdeka' legacy

    • 9:40PM Jan 12, 2013

    Fifty-six years ago, Umno was etched into the history books as the party which helped free Malaysia from British colonialists, a feat which it has hitherto never stopped reminding Malaysians about.

    The declaration of Independence was made by Umno's second president Tunku Abdul Rahman at Stadium Merdeka, which grew even more famous over the years by playing host to premier entertainment, sporting and national events.

    Today, the ageing stadium hosted yet another historical milestone. It was the site of the biggest ever rally organised by opposition parties, which no doubt helped set a new record for the 30,000 capacity stadium.

    If it wasn't enough to stage a massive anti-Umno and anti-BN rally at the venue which played a major role in Umno's legacy, PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim capped off the event by chanting "Merdeka" seven times, mimicking Tunku not only in frequency but in mannerism as well.

    "Like how our forefathers cried out (Merdeka!), today we repeat that oath and this time, we will achieve genuine independence for the people," he said.

    In an attempt to redefine the term, each time Anwar said "Merdeka", the crowd responded with "Rakyat".

    How will Umno react?

    Pakatan Rakyat's antics in Stadium Merdeka is unlikely to bode well for Umno diehards, who are likely to question the sudden and unexpected liberal approach.

    Until today, any major rally with a hint of anti-Umno and anti-BN sentiments would have faced the full brunt of the law, with tear gas, batons and water cannons to boot.

    Instead, the federal government went out of its way to make sure that the rally proceeded without incident, to the extent of having the police say that their aim was to have "zero casualties" during the event.

    In essence, Pakatan came out looking like its support base is growing, despite the intensifying negative press about them coming from the government-controlled media organisations since the last general election.

    Such media organisations are going to be hard-pressed to claim that 100,000 people were paid to attend the rally, whereas Pakatan supporters will claim they braved the heat and congestion, unlike BN's less organic approach in drawing a crowd.

    Looking beyond race

    Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's predecessors have never faced an opposition show of force on this scale before and his party will face a challenge to explain why opposition rally numbers are on the rise under his watch.

    During the rally, Anwar, PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng offered their theories, but it was mostly centred around BN's race-based policies.

    "We need to break from Umno and BN's sentiments that only Malays can take care of Malays, only Chinese can take care of Chinese, only Indians and can care of Indians, only Ibans can take care of Ibans, and only Dayaks can take care of Dayaks.

    "We want to prove we can take care of everyone regardless of race," declared Lim.

    Abdul Hadi also sought to reassure Malay supporters that despite the new politics being advocated, the fundamentals of the country will remain unchanged.

    "PAS together with PKR and DAP have settled on the principles of constitutional monarchy, Islam as the national religion, Malay as the national language and that bumiputera rights would be defended," he said.

    Najib scores own goal?

    Pakatan's message was best reflected in Anwar's call to give the opposition coalition's formula a shot.

    "Give us a chance because we are sensitive to the people's voice, we are not deaf like BN," he said.

    Perhaps it was this "deafness" which may have also contributed to the rise of civil society movements - such as the oil royalty campaign, Himpunan Hijau movement and the Pengerang anti-oil refinery movement - whose supporters made up a significant portion of the participants at the rally today.

    These groups have been growing in strength over the past four years after their pleas to the federal government fell on deaf ears.

    Save for the Bersih coalition, representatives from every civil society movement that took to the stage explicitly urged Malaysians to bring in a new federal government.

    The Najib administration may have avoided a crackdown to prevent a backlash such as in past rallies, but he is now faced with a new challenge of an emboldened Pakatan projecting its strength on Umno's sacred turf.


  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2008
    Pakatan Rakyat have estimated that close to 500,000 turned up for the rally yesterday while police said the crowd was, at the most, 45,000. — file pic

    KL rally makes GE13 a keener battle, say analysts

    By Clara Chooi and Boo Su-Lyn
    January 13, 2013

    KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 13 — Kuala Lumpur’s mammoth rally yesterday has revived Pakatan Rakyat’s (PR) push to capture Putrajaya from the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) which has used a combination of policy and handouts to claw back support, say political analysts.
    The analysts told The Malaysian Insider that PR’s ability to organise up to 100,000 for the Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat gathering and the crowd’s interest in the issues being discussed will make the general election a close battle for both coalitions. PR have estimated that close to 500,000 turned up for the rally at the iconic Stadium Merdeka but police said the crowd was, at the most, 45,000.

    “Regardless of the actual crowd numbers, aerial photographs emerging from the event show a very large crowd, which reflects on the opposition and civil society’s ability to mobilise the public,” Merdeka Center’s Ibrahim Suffian noted.

    “But apart from showcasing the capability of organisers, it also shows the enthusiasm and energy of the forces opposing the government, underlining the fact that the coming polls contest will no doubt be the toughest that the ruling coalition will face in its history,” he added.

    Centre for Policy Initiatives director Dr Lim Teck Ghee said the rally was a “clear-cut victory” for both the opposition and civil society, citing the massive turnout, the disciplined behaviour of participants and the “formidable” consensus shown by all parties in opposing Barisan Nasional’s (BN) rule.

    “All these indicators will strike dismay in BN,” he said.

    But Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) political analyst Professor Datuk Dr Mohammad Agus Yusoff expressed a slightly different view.

    “When such a big rally is not disturbed and goes on so peacefully, why then did it not attract the one-million supporters as promised by Pakatan?” he asked.

    In the run-up to the event, rally organisers had estimated attendance at a whopping one million people, although the seating capacity at Stadium Merdeka is only 30,000.

    The gathering, which saw people dressed in T-shirts in a rainbow of colours to denote various causes, was organised by both political leaders from PR and non-partisan members of various civil society groups as a final showcase of their demands before the 13th general election is called by June.

    “So one impact from this event is that we cannot always believe what these parties tell us. They always boast figures.

    “Sometimes, they should just be realistic. You cannot promise something that is beyond your reach... you will just give false hope,” Agus said.

    But on a more positive note, the professor said the smooth running of the rally, possibly the largest public gathering yet in years, should be marked as a milestone in the growth of democracy in Malaysia.

    He said scenes of the carnival-like atmosphere as rally-goers of all race and backgrounds came together for a cause was enough to reduce a person to tears.

    “It made everyone so happy to get the permit. It shows that we, Malaysians, can now express our rights in a peaceful way. This is what democracy is,” he said.

    Agus added that one of the biggest takeaways from the rally was that it helped voters make up their minds for the polls by placing them in the “best position to assess which party is the best”.

    PR’s de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim made several election pledges that appeared to strike a chord with the predominantly Malay crowd at Stadium Merdeka.

    Speaking to The Malaysian Insider after the event, many rally participants appeared enthused and determined to make sure there will be a change of guard in Putrajaya after the 13th general election.

    “This is the climax before PRU13,” despatch rider Md Isa Ishak said, referring to the polls. “We are angry at cronyism. They are robbing us. We are angry at our leaders now.”

    “I feel positive after this event. I always feel angry at BN,” said 36-year-old videgrapher David Lim, adding that he would get all his friends to vote in the polls.

    Clerk Laila Mahmud said after hearing the issues raised at the rally, she felt that the BN government should be booted.

    “Under the ruling government, everything is controlled by the government. We cannot express our dissatisfaction,” she told The Malaysian Insider.

    “The voices of the people are not being heard by the current government,” she added.

    Laila also expressed her confidence in PR’s ability to take the place of BN as a credible federal government.

    “They are fighting for what the people could not get. For example, the price of petrol, goods, the freedom to choose a government, fair elections,” she said.

    Factory worker Shamsuddin Hassan, 37, said that the rally showed the people’s uprising.

    “It has increased our level of confidence in changing the government,” he told The Malaysian Insider.

    “I think Pakatan is better. We heard just now about many issues, for example the cow issue, guilty people, the issue of (oil) royalties,” Shamsuddin added, referring to the National Feedlot Centre (NFC) scandal that led to a minister’s resignation.

    Housewife Nasrias Awang, who drove to the rally from Besut, Terengganu, said that BN needed to be kicked out of federal government.

    “I’m confident that Pakatan Rakyat will bring something good. I’m confident that it (the rally) will spur the spirit of the people,” said the 45-year-old.

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