Peaceful Assembly Bill a test case whether Najib’s pledge on becoming Prime Minister that “the era of government knows best is over” is serious commitment or just hocus pocus, bunkum and baloney


The Peaceful Assembly Bill is a test case whether the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s pledge on becoming Prime Minister in April 2009 that “the era of government knows best is over”, setting the stage for a government that responds to the people’s views and concerns, or it was just hocus pocus, bunkum and baloney with the Prime Minister not meaning what he said and not prepared to “walk the talk” right from the start of his premiership.

If Najib is serious that under his administration, the era of “government knows best” is over, then he should not find any difficultly in postponing further second reading of the Peaceful Assembly Bill and refer it to a Parliamentary Select Committee to have fullest and meaningful public consultation to ensure that the new Peaceful Assembly Act is not more repressive than the regime created by Section 27 of the Police Act by bringing about an environment where all Malaysians, particularly the civil society, human right activists and the political opposition, feel more liberated instead of being more suppressed under the new legislative proposals.

The only people who are happy with the Peaceful Assembly Bill are the Police and the Home Minister, who have been armed with arbitrary powers to impose restrictive and onerous conditions reducing the constitutional rights of Malaysians to freedom of assembly an empty one.

Najib had already run afoul of his declaration that his administration recognized that the era of “government knows best” is over, for the Peaceful Assembly Bill was drafted under the old mindset and mentality that the “government knows best” – which is why the Bill has attracted universal opposition, protest and condemnation.

It would appear that Najib has too many speech writers, with the speech writer responsible for his “the era of government knows best is over” statement after he became Prime Minister in April 2009 a very different person from the speech writer of his parliamentary speech on Thursday where he could make the ridiculous declaration that the Peaceful Assembly Bill is a “revolutionary” piece of reform.

One reason why Najib’s public persona suffers from a schizophrenic image is that one set of his speech writers do not know what another set of speech writers have committed on behalf of the Prime Minister, as illustrated by the Peaceful Assembly Bill incident.

It is reported that the Prime Minister has ordered the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz to review the Peaceful Assembly Bill as Najib was overseas when the Bill was presented to Cabinet for approval.

If this is true, it neither reflects well on Najib’s premiership nor on the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin who would have acted as Chairman of the Cabinet during Najib’s absence.

What about the other Cabinet Ministers? Were they just a Cabinet of sheep who have no views of their own and could not see instantly that the proposed Peaceful Assembly Bill is completely unacceptable and would not pass muster any meaningful consultation with the civic society, human rights activists and the political Opposition?

Although there have been conflicting reports of seven to eight amendments being considered for the Peaceful Assembly Bill, they all seem to revolve around the outrageous provision of 30-day notice for any assembly to be held – which had been made totally unacceptable when only five days’ notice is required in a country so backward on human rights as Myanmar!

The 30-day notice is not the only objectionable provision in the Peaceful Assembly Bill, as other provisions should also be deleted, e.g. arbitrary powers of the police to impose restrictive conditions, the role of the Home Minister in cases of appeal, the ban on street protests, the list of prohibited areas or 50-metre vicinity disallowing the holding of assemblies, the ban on underaged children and the onerous and crippling fines for offences under the Bill.

Najib should explain what is in the indecent haste that the Peaceful Assembly Bill, despite the universal objection, protest and condemnation of civil society, human rights activists and the political opposition, that it must be passed by Dewan Rakyat next week?

Is it just to allow Najib to have a “trophy” to present to the UMNO General Assembly, although it goes against his commitment on becoming Prime Minister that the era of the government knows best is over?

If Najib postpones second reading of the Bill and refers it to a Parliamentary Select Committee for fullest and meaningful public consultation, he will have a real “trophy” to take to the Umno General Assembly next week that he really meant what he said and that he walked the talk that the era of government knows best is over.

The ball is in Najib’s court.

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  1. #1 by yhsiew on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 4:07 pm

    When did Najib ever tell the truth?

  2. #2 by monsterball on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 4:51 pm

    We can understand and see who is actually the real No.1
    But all are wrong.
    The real No1 is not the No 2.
    It is the retired No.1…always have been.
    Retirement is for show.
    No need to talk and expect the existing ..appointed No1 to respond.
    Just call him…King of the Flip Flopper…compulsive liar and one…very greedy for commission with people’s money.
    No class la.

  3. #3 by monsterball on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 4:58 pm

    Appointed No1 will never dare to go against his No 2 who has made him a fool few times.
    Why like that?
    Use your imaginations…to conclude who is the real No.1….deciding all things.

  4. #4 by undertaker888 on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 5:06 pm

    Najib is tabling the Pissful Assembly Act. It is to piss us off. Getting rid of this arrogant govt is the only act now.

  5. #5 by Bigjoe on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 5:20 pm

    How is it a test when its a forgone conclusion he will fail? We used to call them sheeps going for slaughter. Its not a test, its time to figure out how to cull the inbred political animal that he is part of.

    His action are consistent with what happened during Bersih. Remember he offered to one thing and then renegade on it a couple of time. Its the same act again here. The man is pathetically predictable – even worst than his predecessor.

    Its time to end the political life of these inbred politicals. Its the humane thing to do..

  6. #6 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 5:57 pm

    Muhyiddin said something like this: UMNO is not a racist party.”

    Well…..mooooooooooooo.

    To say UMNO is not a racist party is to say
    cows do not moo…..
    cats do not meow…..
    and dogs do not bark…..

    Ok, Moooooo……………………..

  7. #7 by monsterball on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 6:04 pm

    “hocus pocus…bunkum and baloney”
    Tricks ..nonsense and more full of…shheeet.
    How to beat this descriptions?
    Perfect…excellent….descriptions.

  8. #8 by Godfather on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 6:07 pm

    Moo also said that HE is not racist and that perceptions that Moo is racist are wrong. If that’s the case, pronounce you are Malaysian first and Malay second. If you don’t, then you should quit the post of DPM as the post is for ALL Malaysians.

  9. #9 by Godfather on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 6:08 pm

    Several blogs have predicted that BN will water down some of the provisions of the Bill. I think the optimism is premature and unjustified. They are not going to chart their own demise.

  10. #10 by Peter on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 7:50 pm

    The Peaceful Assembly Bill (“the Bill”) which was recently tabled in Parliament has attracted much criticism. More so, this was due to the fact that the Bill was, and still is, supposed to be a fulfilment of one of the many promises made by the Honourable Prime Minister on the eve of Malaysia Day 2011. This proved that our PM on 1Malaysia, 1 etccc….are all just talk to hoodwink the general rakyat.
    The rakyat esp Bersih and theBar Council should join hands and knock some sense into these BN/UMNO numbskull who only care how to milk more money from the raykat .

  11. #11 by tak tahan on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 8:18 pm

    Ajib could have been suffering far more serious ‘mudah lupa’ syndrome than apa nama mamak.That’s the reason why he always flip-flopped or bactracked all the promises and reforms.Or is he is a habitual liar?Yes,a blardy PM with no honour with his words.

  12. #12 by Loh on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 8:24 pm

    ///It is reported that the Prime Minister has ordered the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz to review the Peaceful Assembly Bill as Najib was overseas when the Bill was presented to Cabinet for approval.

    If this is true, it neither reflects well on Najib’s premiership nor on the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin who would have acted as Chairman of the Cabinet during Najib’s absence.///–Kit

    The Home Ministry which enforces the police act should have the responsibility to provide the details on the new law which replaces the old Act. It shows how Kerismuddin wanted to retain police power. Why was he not asked by Najib to work on the amendments? Najib cannot trust him?

    Muhyiddin was too happy to approve the bill which would put Najib in bad light. It was an opportunity he would not miss; he pretended that Najib had seen the draft, and he acted as if he was a loyal deputy and supported whatever written in Najib name whether or not it had been approved in advance. If it was Kerismuddin who prepared the bill, why did he send for approval in Najib’s absence. Did he not know that requiring 30-day notice to mobilize traffic police cannot be a norm in 21st century, and that alone would attract attack? He anticipated adverse reactions from the public and yet he chose to put Najib through public glare of having to review Cabinet decision on the bill.

    So Najib is fighting for political survival in his own party. Mamakthir must have a hand in it based on his enthusiasm in voicing support for the Peaceful Assembly Bill which denies the right to assembly.

  13. #13 by yhsiew on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 9:07 pm

    I am very surprised that so many BN ministers have no concept about democratic rights, civil liberties and constitutional entitlements. The country will remain backward under the administration of this bunch of BN ministers.

    Don’t be surprised that Myanmar will overtake us in terms of democratic reform in a few years time.

  14. #14 by BaronV on Saturday, 26 November 2011 - 11:26 pm

    Created a facebook page against this ridiculous Peaceful Assembly Act 2011. Spread the word! Lets get more than 1mil members in under the 30 days Najib wants us to wait!!

    http://www.facebook.com/1mMsiansagainstPAB2011

  15. #15 by boh-liao on Sunday, 27 November 2011 - 4:24 am

    NR n UmnoB KNOW dat it’s OK 1, no harm done 1, cos most Malays (feeling INSECURE if they don’t vote 4 UmnoB) n many nonMalays WILL CONTINUE 2 support UmnoB/BN what, despite incompetency, cronyism, nepotism, scandals, COWgate, arrogance, self-serving, corruption, ostentatious displays of ill-gotten wealth

  16. #16 by dagen on Sunday, 27 November 2011 - 10:41 am

    Recorded this interesting convesation the other night between to long time neighbours.
    Dog: Wooof woooooof wof wof wof woooor. Grrrrrr woof. Wof Woof Grr wof Grr wof Grrrrrrrr wooooooof.
    Cat: Miow. Meow. Meoooooowww. Mioa. Mioa. Meow. Miau. Miau. Mioooooow. Mow. Mow. Mow. Miau.
    I dont quite understand the communication. But it is quite obvious that the two neighbours were getting quite agitated. Of course curiousity overcame me and I decided to google for the meaning of that exchange.
    Dog: Umno is stupid, idiotic to pass the assembly act.
    Cat: You are being anti-agung, anti,sultan, anti-gobermen, anti-melayu (actually umnoputras), unpatriotic, ungrateful, communist, terrorist etc etc and there you are isa-able.

  17. #17 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Sunday, 27 November 2011 - 6:22 pm

    Najib is not going to take the loss of GE 13 lying down.

    SO all this talk of peaceful asseembly is simply baloney.

    Peaceful assembly, huh? Look what he did to the peaceful assembly BERSIH 2.0 – guns, tear gas, water cannons, riot police…..

    Do we need any more proof Najib is a man of peace or man of war?

    He has already talked of cyber war….will he ride off quietly into cyberspace……when he loses.

    Malaysians have reasons to fear this man.

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