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 a 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 call 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.

*This article is also availbale in my column in TheMalaysianInsider here.

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22 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. CYC
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 13:10:30

    I support Ambiga’s leadership to pursue a free and fair election system. I demand an explanation from Najib’s weird behaviour of apologizing to the injured reporter by “whispering”. It is act of a coward not to say it loud and clear, a clear reflection of his insincerity.

    Dr Hsu, the peaceful assembly act is tainted with much discretionary power vested on the power that be. I will never accept it. Similarly the amended election act also a sign of regression and easily abused by election commission.

  2. BeWildered
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 13:23:47

    The violent ending of Bersih 3 tells us Malaysian politics is becoming low handed and very dirty, sinister. It is always easy to start a violent conflict; history already told us how the Japanese used a fabricated missing solder incident to invade China. Instead of going after Osama Bin Laden with full force in Afganishtan, George Bush used the ‘terrorism’ and ‘ axis of evil’ and fabricated case of WMD ( weapon of mass destruction) to invade Iraq which led to thousands of death of Iraqi citizen. When I saw people bringing their children to Bersih 3 demonstration, these people have no appreciation they may risk the lives of their children because violence has always been part of conflicts in time of change. It is in fact a blessing no one got killed.
    However, for every citizen got beated or kicked, BN lost 100 votes because the person concerned have family, brothers ANSI sisters, cousins, nices and nephews,friends and co workers.
    Some one was using this to back stab the PM and pin the blame on PKR and Bersih3 committee. One stone trying to kill three birds.

  3. klm
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 15:09:29

    Very good question. I dont think that slime we call PM will answer.

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  5. ERA BARU
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 16:58:17

    The Rakyat knows exactly what Najib and his cousin is capable or rather incapable of. They are very capable of NOT telling the truth and very capable of flip-flopping and passing blame to everyone else except themselves. In this case these someone elses are really the Rakyat who are completely sick and tired of the entire crooked regime which is in total denial of Rakyats’ frustrations and dissapointment. Corruption in this country is at the worst and the state of the nation is the same as Zimbabwe or even Sudan. It is a Police state and the regime is trying everything to claw on to power and greed. The coalition of political parties claiming to represent their communities but supporting this corrupt regime are doing the same greedy and selfish things of holding on to their position, although knowing very well that this regime do not want “Free & Fair Election” …. Hidup Bersih! Hidup Bangsa Malaysia!

  6. WTC
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 17:14:58

    No surprise as UMNO is very good in creating dirty schemes and tricks like creating sex stories, ISA cases against the opposition, cowgate, PKFZ and the down fall of PR State Government. The PM and DPM are not in Malaya but in East Malaysia trying to preceive they are clean and no part in quashing Bersih Sit in. It is well knwon that Special Branch, UMNO youth and pro UMNO can mingle with the crowds and a single word from them can ignite WW3.

    Even in overseas, in Sydney, there were 2 guys, both with cameras trying to record any Malaysian Public Funded students sit in during Bersih.

  7. CYC
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 17:22:24

    Klm, The ever useless KTK has answered on behalf of Jibby. Perhaps he is trying hard to finish off his prodigy TCY who was just been appointed Penang BN chief. I really hope fellow buddhists will stop inviting him to “grace” any Wesak celebration. He never practice the 5 precepts after all. He is a liar and failed to stand up for those who suffer from abusive governance. To serve the nation and paying gratitude to the nation is one of the four gratitudes one must observe as a diligent buddhist. Thank you Dr Hsu for allowing me space to tell this hypocrite off.

  8. CHEW EL
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 19:58:33

    Like a Chinese proverb: “Knowing that there is a tiger in the hill and yet you people are stubborn to look for that tiger”.
    All the Bersih organisers (except Wong Chin Huat) and opposition camp leaders (except Tian Chuan) got off scotch-free – must have prior plan their escape route and leaving those poor Malaysians behind.

  9. Wave33
    Apr 30, 2012 @ 22:55:13

    With this incident, PM rating has drop further.

    I think PM will make a drastic move to gain back his plunged rating, like divorcing his spouse will put some plus points to PM. :-)

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  11. Li Li Fa
    May 01, 2012 @ 10:39:25

    I would like to think that this whole debacle had been let loose by the authorities because the power that be harbours the intention to ‘reign’ at Putrajaya even after G13.

    What originally set to be a peaceful sit-in demonstration was intentionally caused to ‘flare up’, ‘burst’ into flames, and ‘bodies crushed’. Of course, political fingers are pointed at the concerned parties. But little do they know that pointing one finger at Bersih3 and others will mean four fingers pointing back at them.

    It was good public relations when Ah Jib Gor and his cousin allowed a peaceful demonstration to take place. But the decision on the venue was delegated to CityHall, who then pushed the matter to the boys in blue. Could we assume that originally there was no intention to allow the demonstration to take place? But to be viewed as democratic in the eyes of the people and outsiders, AJG had to allow it. Who do you think CityHall and the boys in blue report to?

    Many innocent people were beaten, bruised, and banished from the scene, minutes after the decision to disbursed was announced. Teargas cannisters were fired and brute force took over. Many landed in hospitals. Phone and video jammers were put to good use by the authorities. It was alleged that AJG’s cousin ordered that journalists be brutally handled. OMG! For want of the best democracy in the world? About 250,000 people attended the protest, and they had brought along with them video recorders, cameras, hand-phones, and the most natural of all, their witnessing and knowing eyes.

    As the good name of PM takes a slide, the clock ticks steadily towards the 13GE, which has to be held by June,2013. What drastic steps AJG wil take, depends on how he handles and answers prying questions. Pointing fingers now will only dig deep the mire he has landed himself in.

    A bouquet of yellow roses to Bersih3 and all the supporters.

  12. Dr Hsu
    May 01, 2012 @ 21:37:29

    Dear readers

    I recommend all of you to read this first hand account of what happened at the barrier. The writer even showed photos of Anwar asking people to step back away from the barrier.

    http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=32995:bersih-30-the-perfect-assembly-until-anwar-arrived-and-umno-panicked&Itemid=2

    http://www.loyarburok.com/2012/04/30/bersih-perfect-assembly/

  13. Kai-Lit Phua
    May 02, 2012 @ 10:21:23

  14. Dr Hsu
    May 02, 2012 @ 12:23:02

    Perhasp the answers to my questions can be answered by these photos compiled by Bersih 3.0 (official):

    http://www.facebook.com/gen428

  15. complete_nutrition
    May 02, 2012 @ 18:19:54

  16. Dr Hsu
    May 04, 2012 @ 14:16:31

    Someone actually suggested there is a consipracy behind what happened. The person who has the most to lose is Ah Jib Kor from this mess.

    So who is to gain? The theory is actually some conservative faction (headed by your know who , the vulture that is within ascendancy to the top) is sure of winning a simple majority next GE and they do not want ah jib to win too much. So to sabotage him, certain trade off was done.. leading to what happened in the Square.This will ensure Ahjib will win but not too much and thus he will be another SleepyHead.

    Ofcourse this is just one theory…

  17. Kai-Lit Phua
    May 04, 2012 @ 14:49:05

    Hmm … Dr Hsu

    If this theory is right, then the cousin is in “the other camp”.
    I don’t think this theory is correct.

    Did you see the surreal photo of him looking at the individuals on the wanted list of the police?

  18. klm
    May 04, 2012 @ 15:38:47

    Dr. Hsu. You are not far off the track. I have heard story of the cousin been talking to No. 2. The pair could be setting up the cow for the sacrifice.

  19. Dr Hsu
    May 04, 2012 @ 17:35:04

    klm,
    the cousin’s position is like ahjib’s position in 1987 fight. Fence sitting t see which way wind blows stronger..

    The whole episode reminds of what jib’s father did to tunku in 69.tunku never thought that could happen. if this is true, then things have come a full circle..

  20. CYC
    May 04, 2012 @ 18:47:46

    Karma knows where and when. U can’t escape no matter how “clever” u are. But, i don’t expect to know the truth even a special commission is set up to probe 428 as the one one who responsible to appoint its member is someone who does not hold a neutral view but extremely biased. Its akin to appoint Hitler to probe Nazi.

  21. A true Malaysia
    May 04, 2012 @ 22:41:38

    Time is not at their side, which factions they may be. Let them do whatever dirty tactics against each other what I care. CYC is right, karma know when, whom and where.

    Melayu bukan bodoh. M___ U___ yang bodoh. Fill in the blanks. No prize for right answers by the way because all of us know the answers.

  22. Phua Kai Lit
    May 06, 2012 @ 09:08:54

    Dear “A true Malaysia”

    Yes, change will come sooner or later to Malaysia. The “social forces” are moving the country in that direction e.g. more and more relatively well-educated university graduates who are underemployed or poorly paid will mean growing dissatisfaction against the incompetent ruling regime.There is a limit to how many civil service jobs can be created to absorb these masses.

    The problem though is that if change comes later, considerable damage may be done to the Malaysian economy by the ruling bunch of kleptocrats

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