Yee Yang Yang – Tawau’s pride in standing up for the freedom and rights of university students

I am happy to be back in Tawau, particularly as it has produced a youth who had stood up for the freedom and rights of all university students in the country.

I refer to Tawau youth, Yee Yang Yang, 19, first year student at Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) who became the cause celebre of campus rights of university students as he was thrown into the limelight when he was victimized by UPM security personnel two weeks ago trying to cow students from asserting their human rights to independent student activism.

On Sept. 15, UPM security officials raided Yee’s hostel room and confiscated his laptop computer, high-end mobile phone, portable music player and several other items.

Being interrogated by the security officials was the least of his problems when the UPM Vice Chancellor Nik Mustapha R. Abdullah publicly defended the action of the security officials and justified the confiscation on the ground that Yee’s laptop contained pornographic materials.

This was a downright lie, which had virtually been admitted by the UPM authorities who have returned all the confiscated items to Yee.

Any lesser soul would have wilted under such unprecedented pressures from the university authorities. But Yee stoutly stood his ground.

Nobody wants to be a hero, but it is such unexpected tests which bring out the true character and calibre of a person — and by all accounts, Yee has acquitted himself most creditably for himself, his family, his town Tawau, his state Sabah and his country Malaysia.

All right-thinking Malaysians feel proud that despite his youth, inexperience and unpreparedness, Yee stood up to the test in UPM and remained firm in defending the freedom and human rights of students in the Malaysian university campuses.

Tawau has every reason to feel proud to have produced Yee. Malaysia too, as with such principled youths, there is still hope for the state and the country.

Well done, Yee.

(Media Conference Statement 2 in Tawau on Sunday, 30th September 2007)

  1. #1 by kcb on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 5:43 pm

    “the UPM Vice Chancellor Nik Mustapha R. Abdullah publicly defended the action of the security officials and justified the confiscation on the ground that Yee’s laptop contained pornographic materials.”

    The action of the VC is most disgusting! Why can’he just own up and apologise?

  2. #2 by observer on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 5:54 pm

    This VC should be sacked, had brought a lot of doubts on his capabilty. Uncle kit you had a good potential in the making , Should keep this young man in mind.

  3. #3 by straight talk on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 6:48 pm

    Hi this is gutd.. if only our sleepy head PM has half the guts he will do what is good for him…”call a spade a spade” Go on man det on with the work.. clean up your act. Demand the highest from the civil service… that is what a person of virture will demand.

  4. #4 by izrafeil on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 8:41 pm

    Saya rasa VC ini terlalu takut dengan suara2 ghaib, sebab itulah dia biarkan perkara ini berlarutan sehingga hero kita YYY buat laporan polis sehingga benda ni meletup, sekarang baru dia tau!

  5. #5 by jah on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 10:14 pm

    UPM means Universiti Paling Malang, hahaaa!

  6. #6 by James on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 10:17 pm

    I salute you, YYY. That is the way to show the dastardly cowards like the VC who has no baXXs. Must be a rat of some sort masquerading as a useless human. That is the root cause why the inst of higher learning are falling down like ten pins – deteriorating year after year after year.

    Congratulations useless BN govt of the worst kind!

  7. #7 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 10:58 pm

    Yang Yang, you are truly a Glokal Malaysian. Najib Tun Razak should learn from you.

    As for UPM VC, time to go back to school for your basics in simple Administration, called ‘Adminstration Course 101.’

    If UPM VC was a UPM graduate, he should have been given the “ROYAL FLUSH”, famous when it was in the days of Serdang College of Agriculture. He would just have to put his head in the toilet bowl and well, suffer the ignominity of a right royal flush.

  8. #8 by Damnsore on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 11:01 pm

    It is so convenient for the ‘Make Chinese Angry’ balls carriers to say that “it is the internal problems “of the ‘Mat Rempit University’ and thus, they should not intervene. The ball cariers are a bunch of cowards who dare not speak up for rights of the Chinese particularly in this case when there is a clear case of violation of human rights.How can we have confidence in them anymore? Its so easy to say that they should not interfere as its their internal affairs. Cowards! Another vote against the BN in the next election!

    Despite police reports having being lodged, no actions were taken against the ‘burglar’ who entered YYY’s room and took his laptop without his consent. Taking someone’s property without his consent is a clear case of theft under the Penal Code. Even a police have to obtain a warrant to search someone’s premise. What give him more right than the police.Even if the laptop is returned, it doesnt exonerate him from the crime. It should only mitigate the punishment to be meted against him upon conviction in the court.The criminal should should have been prosecuted to show that no one is above the law.And yet..sigh it will never happen in this Bolehland.

  9. #9 by burn on Sunday, 30 September 2007 - 11:08 pm

    aku tabib sama si dia… berani kerna benar.

    sayang, si VC dah melampaui kebatasannya.
    ia patut di lucutkan jawatannya skali gus. termasuk juga, pengawal pengawal UPM, yang berat sebelah!

  10. #10 by undergrad2 on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 2:43 am

    “All right-thinking Malaysians feel proud that despite his youth, inexperience and unpreparedness, Yee stood up to the test in UPM and remained firm in defending the freedom and human rights of students in the Malaysian university campuses.” Kit

    I believe he was standing up to his property rights as owner of the laptop.

  11. #11 by lupus on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 4:09 am

    Cool, I want to sign up for courses in UPM now. I am sure that Burma military govt have some of their officers in the course……

    1) Crowd control and use of lethal force course – theory and practical
    2) If you can’t find a valid charge, make one up course – practical only (raid on students included)
    3) Torture 101
    4) Looking like an fool on youtube

    Like I have said all the time, the power of the internet – esp youtube and liveleak, USE YOUR PHONE CAMERAS TO BACK UP YOUR STORIES – IT WILL ALWAYS BE YOUR WORD AGAINST THESE CORRUPT BASTARDS – the cameras do not lie

  12. #12 by chloo on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 9:00 am

    How do you fight for rights in an environment where the whole system is corrupt and rotten? From the police to the judiciary to the executive, nothing is spared. So it is no surprise that it is spreading to local councils and universities as well…….well, I salute YYY although I have a feeling that such “bad publicity” will be quickly swept under the carpet and forgotten as we have witnessed countless times………

  13. #13 by Bigjoe on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 9:27 am

    Yes, Yee is heroic and we are seeing more younger men and women who are willing to individually fight for their rights after decades of abuse. But how far can the fight go?

    Its not about just those willing to fight but those who can move the fight and there are way too few. Against overwhelming resources and authorities, those few can be defeated over the long run.

    Someone is already probably finding a way to make sure Yee never does much of anything ever so heroic again..

  14. #14 by Toyol on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 11:26 am

    We must all stand up for our rights, whatever the outcome may be…only then we see the true light. We need patriots…not traitors! All those in BN are only in it for themselves…at the expense of the nation. The Rulers must step in.

  15. #15 by dawsheng on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 4:11 pm

    It is essential that any political party who aspires to form the next govt either by itself or in a coalition to have enough money to support its poltical agendas. The opposition parties in Malaysia cannot remain poor because as long as they remain so, BN will always be the govt.

  16. #16 by madmix on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 6:29 pm

    Yee should sue the VC. The VC has damaged his reputation by claiming his computer contain pornographic material when this wa snot so.

  17. #17 by Cinapek on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 7:02 pm

    I fear for this young man’s future in UPM. I cannot imagine that people with the Mat Rempit mentality of the VC and his goons will let this young man off so easily. It is not easy for them to eat humble pie dished out by their political masters who made them do it because they feared a backlash from non bumi voters due to this blatant abuse of power and victimisation. They will wait for a chance to take revenge. Mentally YYY should prepare himself for a hard time in UPM from hereon. It will test his mental strength to the max.

    I remembered he is studying timber technology and this is apt for someone from Tawau. It clearly indicates he wants to contribute to Tawau and Malaysia after he graduates and it will be sad if sick minds try to drive him away.

  18. #18 by shortie kiasu on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 7:28 pm

    The “police state” permeates every level of our society to muffle all freedom of speech and expression. No dissent will be tolerated here although the government had been barking that they were working towards liberalizing the civil society.

    The more highhandness against civil liberty is obviously in the university where students are likely to be exposed to all forms of knowledge some of which the ruling party deemed detrimental to their continued existence or relevance.

    Yee Yang Yang is just one of many of the victims of such circumstance. There were many victims whose plight were never highlighted in the media.

  19. #19 by mendela on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 10:22 pm

    Heroes like YYY and songwriter of Negarakuku are saviors for Malaysia.

    We all must stand up and say No to this most corrupted Gomen in the world!

    We all must fight for justice!

    We must fight for our RIGHTS! Enough is enough!

  20. #20 by JaguhKampung on Monday, 1 October 2007 - 11:56 pm

    The fact that this VC “lied” when defending the university’s action to confiscate and justified the action to confiscate YYY’s laptop computer without any grounds automatically decredentialize him as a VC for UPM or for any university at all.

    Aren’t these people holding such highly esteemed position should be so wise and learned not to speak without knowing the facts?

  21. #21 by undergrad2 on Tuesday, 2 October 2007 - 6:01 am

    The university campus has always been the training ground of future leaders.

  22. #22 by Jimm on Tuesday, 2 October 2007 - 9:47 am

    Academically, some of our VCs are average people with the right connection in the government system.
    When we mixed politic with education environment here in Malaysia, they will always sides ..their master. who is paying them a salary and other ‘perks’. It’s these ‘perks’ that at times so tempting to resist that make oneself turned away from practising their rights over issue and professionalism in executing their duties.

  23. #23 by Jimm on Tuesday, 2 October 2007 - 9:51 am

    As for YYY, this guy are one of those younger generation Malaysian that call for his rights to be a Malaysian.
    We will soon be facing more and more waves from those younger group in Malaysia as they have adopt a better knowledge about their rights to be heard.
    Another powerful impact, the world is also listening.

  24. #24 by ktteokt on Wednesday, 3 October 2007 - 8:14 am

    What rights? In Malaysia, only those in power and those with proper connections have rights. All others are what the Chinese term as “clawless crabs”, waiting to be slaughtered.

  25. #25 by bra888 on Wednesday, 3 October 2007 - 8:08 pm

    We need more people like Triple Y in this country. Mere words cannot allow me to describe how brave and great he truly is.

    I believe that Malaysians are not aware of the importance of human rights issue. Just compare our high school history textbooks and the history lessons other countries like America has and you will see the difference. During my generation in form 5, I had to restudy our local history again which made me hated history. You will also notice that our textbooks emphasized more on our local politicians, in which I believe, has not contributed as much as great politicians outside this country like Nelson Mandela or Martin Luther King. I believe our local history regarding to the fight for human right is certainly short not to mention our country is only 50 years old.

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