Sarawak activists, lawyer detained ahead of polls

by Keruah Usit
Jan 7, 11

Police detained four activists and confiscated ‘seditious’ CDs and VCDs containing video and audio recordings of TV Sarawak Bebas and Radio Free Sarawak late last night in Kuching and Miri in what appears to be coordinated arrests.

Kuching-based land rights activist and Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (Sadia) secretary Nicholas Mujah and Miri-based land rights lawyer and activist Abun Sui Anyit were both detained by Kuching and Miri police respectively.

The duo had their statements taken by the police. The other two, who were arrested by police in Kuching but without their statements taken, were social activist Ong Boon Keong and Sadia staff Nikodemus Singgai.

Six Home Ministry officials and a team of Special Branch officers raided Sadia office just past midnight and confiscated about 1,200 of CDs and VCDs. Also confiscated were two compact disc burners and some promotional leaflets.

Mujah, Singgai and Ong were subsequently taken to the Satok police station in Kuching.

A few hours later, Mujah was transferred to the Home Ministry office in Kuching for questioning after the confiscated materials were recorded at the Satok police station.

He was told that he is being investigated under Section 6 of the Film Censorship Act.

While he was not charged, Mujah was required to return to the police station in one month’s time. The trio was finally able to head home at dawn, around 5.30am.

Prominent Kuching-based land rights lawyer See Chee How was present during the raid at Sadia office and accompanied those arrested by the police until all were released.

Lawyer intercepted at Miri airport

Meanwhile in Miri, Anyit was stopped by a group of police officers at the Miri airport at 8.30pm as he arrived from Kuching early last evening.

Anyit was said to be carrying about 200 similar CDs and VCDs as he was stopped by police and was told that they suspected the materials were seditious.

He was then taken to the Miri police station and had his statement taken. He was told that he was being investigated under section 4(1) of the Sedition Act and had been told to appear in court later today.

Anyit was eventually released on police bail and allowed to leave at around 3am.

Speaking to Malaysiakini this morning, Anyit, a PKR member, said that12 police officers had come to arrest him and that he was questioned about his political and work activities.

“They also asked about my parents, siblings and son… this has nothing to do with the CDs. I believe that this is politically motivated,” he said, adding that he is expected to be charged in court on Feb 7.

‘TV Sarawak Bebas’ is a DVD-based media targeting Sarawak’s vast rural communities.

It has recorded several stories from the rural communities on their fight to defend their land rights and about the abject living conditions.

‘Radio Free Sarawak’ is an independent station which started its daily broadcast on Nov 16 last year and sources its news from the expose-website Sarawak Report as well as from Sarawak activists and communities defending land rights and against abuses by the Sarawak BN government under long-time Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud.

Malaysian blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin, who is popularly known as RPK, is a regular commentator on the radio programme.

Sarawak state election must be held before July 2011 and the opposition Pakatan Rakyat is mounting the most serious challenge yet to Taib Mahmud, who is facing mounting calls to quit after Sarawak Report exposes incidences of corrupt practice on a massive scale.

  1. #1 by sheriff singh on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 12:55 pm

    The same tactics will probably be applied during the 13th GE where many Opposition leaders will most likely be neutralised for a BN walkover.

  2. #2 by yhsiew on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 1:10 pm

    Ya, taking the clue from what is happening to these Sarawak activists, one can anticipate many arrests of opposition leaders and supporters come the 13th GE. BN’s intimidation tactics are well-known.

  3. #3 by undertaker888 on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 1:13 pm

    CD talking about corruption is seditious? but corruption is not? is the police high on amphethemine?

  4. #4 by k1980 on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 1:50 pm

    //Mujah was transferred to the Home Ministry office in Kuching for questioning after the confiscated materials were recorded at the Satok police station. He was told that he is being investigated under Section 6 of the Film Censorship Act.//

    Don’t tell me that Mujah’s film is more pornographic than Chua’s video “The Last Tango in Muar”. Better if Chua is also arrested for corrupting the mind of kids. If Mujah gets 2 years in prison, Chua should get 50 years due to seriousness of his offence.

  5. #5 by negarawan on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 2:03 pm

    Let’s pray for their safety in the hands of these shameless thugs. May God almighty deliver His justice and protect the people of Sarawak and Sabah, especially the natives who have been severely marginalized in the last 50 years under UMNO/BN.

  6. #6 by dagen on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 2:25 pm

    Get rid of your opponents and pray for a walkover no-contest election.

  7. #7 by johnnypok on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 3:31 pm

    Since not free to operate on the surface, then no choice but to go underground.

    We are heading for trouble.

  8. #8 by boh-liao on Friday, 7 January 2011 - 4:13 pm

    D coming GE will b d MOST dirty GE UmnoB/Bn will conduct
    “Take no prisoners” stuff, mayb another Op Lalang & ISA then follow by GE

  9. #9 by Loh on Sunday, 9 January 2011 - 4:45 am

    May 13 broke out when general election of 1969 was in progress in Sabah. The election was suspended. When the suspended general election in Sabah was about to resume, Tun Mustapha, the then Chief minister of Sabah, arrested all those opposition candidates against the Alliance. In the end, Sabah gave Razak enough seats to attain 2/3 majority in parliament. Article 153 was then amended.

    The trick applied by Mustapha 42 years ago in Sabah is being repeated in Sarawak. UMNO must have been the adviser in both incidents.

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