Walk with the rakyat, not against us, Bersih tells Najib

June 26, 2011 | The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, June 26 — Bersih 2.0 told Datuk Seri Najib Razak today the next two weeks leading to its July 9 rally will define his leadership, saying any further crackdown is a “tragic reflection of the failure” of his government in handling the issue.

The group also said it was disappointed in the prime minister’s declaration that Bersih 2.0 supporters are to be held responsible should chaos ensue during the July 9 rally, noting that it was against any form of violence.

“We once again make an open, sincere and heartfelt call to the prime minister to walk with the rakyat, not against us,” Bersih 2.0 said in a statement issued tonight.

The Bersih rally has come under attack from Umno and its allies, notably Malay rights group Perkasa which has also said it will march if Bersih doesn’t call off its protest. Umno Youth will also march but to defend the Election Commission which Bersih is lobbying to reform the electoral process.

Police have warned against any rallies and promised touch action against the organisers, all of whom have been called in for questioning tomorrow.

They arrested 30 Bersih activists from the Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) in Penang yesterday, and have remanded them for a week while investigating charges that they were “waging war against the monarch”. The Home Ministry has also not ruled out using security laws that allow detention without trial.

“We are glad that the prime minister has finally broken his silence regarding the July 9 rally, but are disappointed that instead of fulfilling his government’s role as the protector of the constitutional rights and safety of peace-loving Malaysians, he has chosen instead to misrepresent our intentions and wield the dark sceptre of unwarranted repressive ‘consequences’,” added the group headed by former Malaysian Bar president Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan.

They said they were disappointed at the accusation that the purpose of Bersih 2.0 was to “wrest back political momentum from the BN.”

“The prime minister must have either failed to read and understand our stated goals, or is deliberately putting Bersih 2.0 in a misleading light.

“As a movement, we have no interest whatsoever in the political momentum of any political party – our goal is to make the electoral system truly free and fair so that all political parties in Malaysia, bar none, can contest on a level playing field, where the rakyat can freely choose whoever they think is best to lead them,” they said, adding they have invited Najib’s Barisan Nasional (BN) to take part in the rally.

They pointed out that the rally was the perfect opportunity for Najib to show the progressive views he has espoused.

“He can conclusively do so simply by allowing the July 9 rally to proceed unhindered and by directing all government agencies to cooperate fully with all involved to ensure that that each and every Malaysian wishing to exercise their constitutional right may do so without any fear of clashes or chaos.

“We feel that this would be the best use of the energies and resources of the police, who have continued to thoroughly perplex observers both locally and abroad by arresting patriotic, peace-loving Bersih 2.0 supporters for ‘waging war against the monarch’.

“Surely this stark and alarming lack of logic and common sense will further tarnish our nation’s image and contradict the values championed by the prime minister and his government,” the group said.

While agreeing with Najib that political power is in the hands of the people, Bersih 2.0 said “until comprehensive reforms are introduced into the electoral system to make it free and fair, political power will remain in the hands of a select few, and not Malaysians at large.”

“Bersih 2.0 is of the view that these two weeks will be a defining moment for the prime minister and his government.

“As the final authority in the government, any crackdown on civil society, refusal to guarantee the safety of Malaysians on July 9, or rhetoric that unfairly demonises patriotic, peace loving citizens will be a tragic reflection of the failure of the prime minister to live up to their promises and the responsibilities entrusted to them by the Malaysian people,” the group added.

  1. #1 by bruno on Monday, 27 June 2011 - 2:15 am

    Najib has no marbles to walk hand in hand with Bersih.

  2. #2 by bruno on Monday, 27 June 2011 - 2:20 am

    If invited Dr. Mahathir would.The man with marbles is Dr. Mahathir.Najib,Muyiddin and Hishamuddin all no marbles.All cowards.

  3. #3 by Bigjoe on Monday, 27 June 2011 - 8:06 am

    Bersih should agressively keep engaging Najib in debate about their agenda.

    Najib made a huge strategic mistake by opening his mouth two weeks before the rally. He should have engaged in the debate, fully prepared, much earlier OR he should have wait until the last minute before he took out the fists and hammers. By opening his mouth at this stage, he has to engage in the debate which he clearly have no idea what to say or he will look like a poor leader. His personal popularity, one of the last bulwark of UMNO/BN vote bank is going down the drain. The young voters, including Malay voters will be disgusted in his engaging in lies and all the mud they throw at Anwar now sticks on him. Anwar now looks the better statesman EVEN with lingering doubts.

    Its unbelievable how UMNO/BN from top to bottom is just messing up strategically but it should be no surprise given that Najib’s got his strategic formula all wrong from the start.

  4. #4 by dagen on Monday, 27 June 2011 - 9:07 am

    So Jib, errrrmm are you anti-bersih?

    I can sense a checkmate here people! Jib does not seem to know the appropriate respond. If the people were to come out in support of the bersih movement this july the 9th in tens (or better still, hundreds) of thousands, then umno would go completely beserk. And many in umno (I believe) may even scatter helter skelter.

    So keep up the pressure. We are on the right course. Full steam ahead people!

  5. #5 by best4rakyat on Monday, 27 June 2011 - 10:13 am

    Let’s learn,organise smartly,and if necessary do not be denied but just accept the “bertanding” but not “berlawan” as said in coming GRE13,will you?

    “If you have the guts, come and fight us in the General Elections! If you don’t have the guts, then have your little street demonstrations,” said Najib,
    “This is a country of laws. The important thing is the safety of the people,” said Najib
    “Political power is in the hands of the rakyat!” said the prime minister.

    So what’s next?

    My grandma overheared in TV yesterday and she is age 95 now.She walked away in silent lowering her head and keep shaking her head!
    Grandma was educated at times during british colonial past before Merdeka!She is against racism but defend her origin in status!

    Later the youngest in family broke grandma’s silent by revealing to us her thought and reason of shaking her head after hearing the above and news about berseh rally in JUL09.
    She said in Malaysia few things will not change and is always a mistake by many good leaders who cannot make it to convince a fair change because of the following denial in reality:-

    1.One keep denying one is not racial whereas
    but you must be always stand firmly in admitting you are more ‘r’ than the ‘r’!
    ‘r’ here stands for typical race and make clear of their stand.
    This is not really racist as many parties and leaders with power that we can see is more racial (r) than other in their own identity.So do Ibrahim Ali is amongst one of them saying loudly he is a malay.
    Many non-racial or NGO leaders are good leader except always soften by this weakness too afraid to accept or recognise who they are and be bold enough to state the truth.

    What so wrong to be “more majority than the majority but safeguard the majority and vice versa for the minority”.

    Noted here also the grandma is not a chinese in origin but shaking her heads whenever chinese was criticised by other.In her memory chinese had never since from past and in history ever united under a ‘single umbrella’ before or after independent to be “more chinese than a chinese”.
    They see to have MCA as well as too many different clans except eating habits and unique in culture yet still think so different so divide and always dispute among themselves.This is so true when you look around and they keep denying this weakness in unity by saying ‘no’ and just become anger instead when condemned by one.Like the saying go:”All are just a plate of loose sand”!
    We cannot deny for malay the boldness of telling other loudly and clearly they are the malay is just more than enough needless to mention culture and belief!

    2.It is not going to change for anything if our goal is not set clearly.Keyword here is the ‘silent’ king!
    Also,one can shout and gather with big group at one place but because of unclear and undetermined mindset is going to be short-lived and again be failure to succeed in any appeal for change though right perception and truthful!
    Grandma said:
    “you see how the ants move and work…’more majority than the majority and also more minority than the minority’.They can be seen in one or few but all in sudden can become many in big group.
    They are more clever and most important is they will only move and aim at the target or goal!
    They may face obstacle yet they will move away swiftly in direction and change course.”But we humans are not specially in any rally!

    Hearing this we can sense grandma is telling us something and most important must have a target and direction just like ants are heading to!
    So are we more or less intelligent than ants for handling a mass procession or rally sometimes?

    We always and for years keep saying about change but then how…whenever always fall into the trap of be pointed as unrightful,irresponsible for riots etc and etc as excuse!
    So be a wise and behave leaders always.Also grandma said learnt as leader move with wisdom so that your opponents will never find an excuse or fault to down you!

    All men are brothers dedicate and smart wise but their ending is still in the hands of the ‘silent’ emperor as just like you will see and learn then from movie!
    So Be clear of your target goal and mission.
    Use good wisdom as she concluded whether you are a malay,indian,chinese or whatever and go wisely for approriate and smart way to create history for rakyat!

You must be logged in to post a comment.