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Monday, March 20, 2017

Maria complains of disturbing phone calls early in the morning

Bersih 2.0 chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah has reiterated her complaints of getting strange phone calls in the early morning, claiming that those behind the calls are out to irritate and intimidate her and others.
However, Maria maintained she is not intimidated or daunted by such calls.
“Everyday I get phone calls at 2am, 3am and 4am and when I answer, there's no reply - or the unknown caller asks if I was having a foam or bubble party.
“I switch off my handphone or sleep through the calls. I take these calls as coming from people who are paid or instructed to disturb us or hope to create fear, in us” she said.
In a Facebook posting today, Maria said it was not only she who received these unreasonable calls but that fellow Bersih steering committee member Mandeep Singh and her predecessor Ambiga Sreenevasan also received such calls.
Speaking to Malaysiakini, Maria said she has even resorted to blocking the numbers, as advised by her telephone companies, and that the calls started coming in after her release from detention under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act last November.
“I have blocked like ‘thousands’ of numbers, but they keep calling through other numbers and this is meant to irritate us,” she said.
Maria added that she herself had received two death threats, and has lodged reports and complaints to the police.
She said she even surrendered two of her handphones to the police to investigate the anonymous calls, but the police said they could not find the culprits.
“The police could catch other people for other offences, like making postings on 1MDB or for putting up text messages on social media. But in my case, why can’t they even locate the culprits who made the death threats,” the Bersih chairperson wondered.
Calls keep coming in
Despite this, Maria remains undaunted despite the intimidating calls keep coming in, up to last night, and that she could understand the context of such calls or text messages.
“However, insults, unreasonable comments, inability to talk, unjustifiable lies or comments are behaviours that we should not accept.
“Some may say it is freedom of expression, but a line has to be drawn as such calls are intimidation,” she said, adding that friends don’t do this to her.

The Bersih chairperson suggested that whoever instructs or pays for such behaviour to look at themselves and to stop the intimidation.
“We are not afraid, period,” she said in ending the Facebook post.
The calls, Maria told Malaysiakini are irritating but she, along with Mandeep and Ambiga, are not daunted by them.
"We will continue to ignore the calls," she added.
It was reported in December 2015, that Maria and Ambiga have been receiving such calls in the middle of the night since the Bersih 4 rally. Even Mandeep has received such calls and they claimed that their numbers were put up through unauthorised advertisements.- Mkini

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