NGOs: Witch hunt of Bersih leaders a cynical attack on accountable government

NGOs: Witch hunt of Bersih leaders a cynical attack on accountable government
11 Nov 2015

We, the undersigned civil society organisations, condemn in the strongest terms the witchhunt of Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections 2.0 (Bersih 2.0) leaders, for successfully organising the the historic Bersih 4 rally on 29-30 August, as a cynical attack on the right to dissent and on the very idea of accountable government.

The witch hunt of the two Bersih leaders — and possibly more political activists — is a cynical mockery of Article 10(1)(b) of the Federal Constitution which provides for the freedom of peaceful assembly.

The electoral lobby’s chair Maria Chin Abdullah and its Sabah vice chair Jannie Lasimbang were charged respectively on 3 November 2015 and 21 October 2015 under Section 9(5) of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 for failure to serve the police a 10-day notice.

When the communication between Bersih and the police not only took place but was even reported widely in the media, when the Bersih rally was amazingly peaceful despite its scale (accumulatively 500,000 participants) and its length (34 hours), these prosecutions are nothing but persecution of those who dare to exercise their constitutional freedom.

The real “crime” that Maria and Jannie committed together with 500,000 Malaysians is demanding an accountable government and believing that citizens have the right to call for a government that betrays their trust to resign.

When demanding an accountable government is a crime, Malaysia is pushed towards worsening economic lethargy and political instability.

Citizens are pushed to either give up on changes or believe that changes can never happen under peaceful means. The former response leads to brain drain and capital flight while the latter makes them susceptible to radical means.

Ironically, the witch-hunt validates the Bersih 4 rally’s demands for institutional reforms, most notably, the right to dissent.

We urge millions of Malaysians who support Bersih 2.0’s cause for democratisation to stand firm with Maria and Jannie, who are now the face of Malaysians’ moral courage and determination for change at the nation’s trying time.

For both the sanctity of the Federal Constitution and political stability, we call upon the attorney general’s chambers to come to their sense and withdraw the charges.

Endorsed by:
1. All Women Action Society (Awam)
2. Anak Muda Sarawak (AMS)
3. Angkatan Warga Aman Malaysia (WargaAman)
4. Council of Churches Malaysia (CCM)
5. Engage
6. Federation of Malaysian Indian Organization (Prima)
7. Green Friends Sabah
8. Himpunan Hijau
9. Institute for Development of Alternative Living, (Ideal, Sarawak)
10. Institut Rakyat
11. Islamic Renaissance Front (IRF)
12. Japan Graduates’ Association of Malaysia (Jagam)
13. Jaringan Orang Asal Semalaysia (JOAS)
14. Jawatankuasa Bertindak Kuala Lumpur Tak Nak Insinerator (KTI)
15. Jihad for Justice
16. Kajian Politik untuk Perubahan (KPRU)
17. LLG Cultural Development Centre (LLG)
18. Malaysians Against Death Penalty and Torture (Madpet)
19. Malaysian Indians Progressive Association (Mipas)
20. Malaysian Indian Transformation Action Team (Mitra)
21. Malaysian Physicians for Social Responsibility
22. Malaysian Youth Care Association (Prihatin)
23. Malaysian Youth & Students Democratic Movement (Dema)
24. National Indian Rights Action Team (Niat)
25. Negeri Sembilan Chinese Assembly Hall (NSCAH)
26. Oriental Hearts and Mind Study Institute (OHMSI)
27. Partners in Community Organising (Pacos Trust)
28. Perak Women for Women Society (PWW)
29. Persatuan Aliran Kesedaran Negara (Aliran)
30. Persatuan Bekas Siswazah Univesiti dan Kolej di China, Malaysia (LiuHua)
31. Persatuan Dayak Sarawak (Pedas)
32. Persatuan Kesedaran Komuniti Selangor (Empower)
33. Persatuan Masyarakat Selangor dan Wilayah Persekutuan (Permas)
34. Persatuan Rapat Malaysia (Rapat)
35. Pertubuhan IKRAM Malaysia (Ikram)
36. Projek Dialog (PD)
37. Pusat Komas
38. Research for Social Advancement (Refsa)
39. Rise of Sarawak Efforts (Rose)
40. Sabah Women’s Action-Resources Group (Sawo)
41. Sahabat Rakyat
42. Sarawak Access (Saccess)
43. SAVE Rivers (Sarawak)
44. Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia (SABM)
45. Selangor And KL Hokkien Association Youth Section
46. Sisters in Islam (Sis)
47. Suara Rakyat Malaysia (Suaram)
48. United Chinese School Alumni Associations of Malaysia (Xiao You Lian Zong or UCSAAM)
49. Tamil Foundation
50. Teoh Beng Hock Trust for Democracy
51. The Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall (KLSCAH)
52. Tindak Malaysia
53. We are Malaysians
54. Women Centre’s for Change (WCC), Penang
55. Women Development Organization of Malaysia, PJ Branch
56. Writers’ Alliance For Media Independence (Wami)

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‘Sosma review committee yet another Najib’s unfulfilled promise’

‘Sosma review committee yet another Najib’s unfulfilled promise’
4 Nov 2015

Three years since promising to form a committee to review the Security Offences (Safety Measures) Act 2012, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak has failed to fulfil his promise, think tank Political Studies for Change (KPRU) said.

KPRU executive director Ooi Heng said the Hansard shows Najib promised to do twice in the Dewan Rakyat and Dewan Negara, but three years and three months later, this has yet to happen.

“While tabling the Sosma Bill on April 16, 2012, Najib said the government would form a committee to review the Act from time to time, and to recommend improvements.

“The prime minister also said at a Dewan Rakyat event the same day that ‘the committee will not only be made up of government agency representatives, but also the Malaysian Bar president and National Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) representative’.

“The same guarantee was repeated by the Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Liew Vui Keong on May 8, 2012,” he said.

Ooi said the Yang di-Pertuan Agong on June 18 had consented to the Sosma Bill and the legislation was subsequently gazetted as ‘Act 747’ and came into force on July 31, 2012.

However, the review committee is still nowhere in sight.

Yesterday, Bar Council president Steven Thiru raised the issue during a forum with former attorney-general Abdul Gani Patail.

Gani urged the Bar Council to take up the issue with the government.

http://www.malaysiakini.com/news/318431

Malay:https://kprumalaysia.org/2015/11/04/janji-najib-tubuh-jawatankuasa-sosma-luput-3-tahun-3-bulan-3-hari/

 

Janji Najib Tubuh Jawatankuasa Sosma Luput 3 Tahun 3 Bulan 3 Hari

Janji Najib Tubuh Jawatankuasa Sosma Luput 3 Tahun 3 Bulan 3 Hari

Susulan kenyataan mantan peguam negara Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail pada 3 November 2015, badan pemikir Kajian Politik untuk Perubahan (KPRU) ingin mengingatkan Perdana Menteri Datuk Seri Najib Razak, bahawa janji beliau menubuhkan sebuah jawatankuasa menyemak Akta Kesalahan Keselamatan (Langkah-langkah Khas) (Sosma) 2012 apabila Akta Sosma dikuatkuasakan telahpun luput selama tiga tahun tiga bulan tiga hari.

KPRU telah menyemak penyata rasmi kedua-dua Dewan Rakyat dan Dewan Negara dan mendapati bahawa pada 3 November 2015, yakni pada hari mantan peguam negara memberikan ucapan dalam forum yang dianjurkan Majlis Peguam bertajuk “Sosma – Serigala dalam badan kambing?” di Kuala Lumpur, jaminan yang dberikan oleh Perdana Menteri semasa beliau membaca kali yang kedua Rang Undang-Undang Kesalahan Keselamatan (Langkah-langkah Khas) (Sosma) 2012, telah luput selama tiga tahun tiga bulan tiga hari.

Pada 16 April 2012, semasa mencadangkan Rang Undang-undang Kesalahan Keselamatan (Langkah-langkah Khas) 2012 dibacakan kali yang kedua, Perdana Menteri telah memberikan jaminan yang berbunyi seperti berikut:

“Lindung jamin keenam ialah apabila akta ini berkuat kuasa, kerajaan juga akan menubuhkan satu jawatankuasa secara pentadbiran untuk menyemak keseluruhan akta ini daripada semasa ke semasa dan jawatankuasa ini akan juga bertanggungjawab untuk meneliti pelaksanaan akta tersebut dan mengemukakan syor untuk penambahbaikan.”

Perdana Menteri juga menyatakan dalam Majlis Mesyuarat Dewan Rakyat pada hari tersebut, bahawa “jawatankuasa ini akan dianggotai bukan sahaja dari agensi-agensi berkenaan tetapi juga oleh Presiden Majlis Peguam dan SUHAKAM.”

KPRU mendapati, jaminan yang sama telah diulang oleh Timbalan Menteri di Jabatan Perdana Menteri pada ketika itu Datuk Liew Vui Keong dalam Majlis Mesyuarat Dewan Negara pada 8 Mei 2012.

KPRU juga menyemak status Akta Sosma dan mendapati bahawa Akta Sosma telah diperkenan oleh Yang di-Pertuan Agong pada 18 Jun 2012, diwartakan pada 22 Jun 2012 sebagai Akta 747 dan dikuatkuasa pada 31 Julai 2012.

Dikeluarkan oleh,
Ooi Heng
Pengarah eksekutif
Kajian Politik untuk Perubahan (KPRU)
4 November 2015