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Sunday, April 29, 2012

Yes, Prime Minister, we need answers!



 
2 days after Bersih 3.0, and after viewing many videos and photos in the internet, I would like to pose a few questions to the authority, specifically the Prime Minister, who missed a golden chance to walk his talk (and claim to be a reformist)
1.  When was the decision to fire tear gas made? was it the spur of the moment decision or was it made much earlier?
2. Why was the phone scrambler being used at about 2pm ( around which time, all of us at Masjid Jamek area were unable to send out messages and make calls) when the whole rally was still peaceful and look more like a carnival?
Did the authority already know by then that there would be violence and  the use of phone scrambler was to prevent any pictures and videos being sent out?
Was the failure for part of the crowd to disperse due to the fact that Datuk Ambiga’s urge to disperse failed to reach those who were in other parts of the rally and who could not receive messages/calls on their phones?
3. Who were those who break through the barrier? I was at the barrier area earlier and saw many lines of police standing right in front of the barrier. How could people break through the barrier if that is so? Many accounts told of the police suddenly leaving the barrier, and that led to some from the crowd (provocateurs?) breaking through the barrier. Was that what led to the firing of tear gas ?
4. Why the need to fire deep into the crowd when just some of them went over the barrier? Wouldn’t it be possible for the police to arrest those few that went over instead of firing tear gas and beating up many innocent people , including the media who were there to perform their duty?
5. Who ordered the closure of the LRT stations in those areas where the people assembled? I left the Masjid Jamek area after Ambiga’s speech, and I still managed to catch a LRT back. However, later these stations were closed leading to many people unable to leave. If the police crackdown was to ask the people to disperse, then why the illogical  decision to close the stations ?
Isn’t it contradictory that on the one hand, the authority wanted people to leave but on the other, the means to leave the area was denied to the same people? Or was  the crackdown meant to punish the people, 99.9% of them were peaceful and harmless ?
6. Did the authority not remember that under the Peaceful Assembly Act, the people have a right to assembly and  police’s  function should be to facilitate and protect those who assembled peacefully and arrest the few that made trouble, and not by shooting tear gas indiscriminately ?
7. If the rakyat can assemble for the annual New Year countdown in Dataran, why can’t a peace movement be allowed to assemble ? Isn’t asking for a fair and clean election something more important than counting down to  a New Year?
I support Bersih Chairperson Ambiga’s call for a complete, thorough and open investigation, but as a Malaysian, I feel that I deserve the right to the answers to the above questions.

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