The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak should send a clear directive to the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar to facilitate and ensure the success of Bersih 4 to demonstrate to the world the Malaysian Government’s respect of the people’s rights to free expression and peaceful assembly and readiness to listen to the people’s legitimate views and criticisms.
There has been a lot of irresponsible talk recently by those in power about plots to topple the elected government of Malaysia.
There are no such subversive plots involving violent and/or unconstitutional means to topple the elected Prime Minister or elected government, as I dare say after five decades in politics that Malaysians regardless of race or religion do not want any violent or unconstitutional change of government, and everyone is committed to upholding the fundamental principles of the Malaysian Constitution – which means a change of the elected government only by peaceful, democratic and constitutional means, not just during a general election, but also at times in between general elections as by a vote of no confidence in Parliament.
It is the people who deny Malaysians the right to peaceful, democratic and constitutional means of changing the government who are the real culprits guilty of violating Section 124B of the Penal Code, i.e. “activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy”.
It is the people, however high in office, who deny the people the right to peaceful, democratic and constitutional means of changing the elected government of the day who should be the subject of police scrutiny and investigations, and not those who uphold the constitutional right to peaceful and democratic change of government, whether at a general election or in between general elections.
Bersih 4, and Global Bersih all over the world, will be Malaysia’s “coming-of age” as a parliamentary democracy and a message to the world that a self-confident Malaysian democracy has arrived to join the ranks of world democracies – turning away from the path to a rogue state, where there are only the trappings but not the substance of democracy.
The Malaysian Government has as much interest as the Bersih organisers and the Malaysian people to ensure the success of Bersih 4, and I urge the Prime Minister to adopt a statesmanlike approach to help ensure the success of Berish 4 to herald the arrival of Malaysia on the world stage of democracies.