Penang Bersih 3.0: All-inclusive and electric


An Aliran exco member produced this photo story of the memorable Penang Bersih 3.0 rally, the images of which are etched in the memory of all those who participated.

They came in sandals and sneakers, walking boots and cycling shorts. They came by car, they biked in, they took public transport, they came on foot.

And they came in yellow, symbol of the people’s dreams of clean and fair elections, to the Penang Esplanade on 28 April—the Bersih 3.0 rally was on. To those of us who were there, the atmosphere was warm, friendly, all-inclusive, even electric and exciting.

There was singing and chanting, claps and waves, and fists in the air calling for bersih, bersih… There was no retaliatory violence, no ugly jostling and heckling, no destruction of barriers—because there were no barriers in the way of the people. The police watched from the sidelines; the cynics and provocateurs stayed away. And thousands massed on the green, united.

Not yet 2.00pm, the scheduled starting time of the rally, and the numbers had exceeded the 1,000-mark for sure.

Young and old they came. As a 60-year-old woman in KL said, “We are already old, but this is for the children and the grandchildren.”

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Balloons were released as the crowd chanted the demands of Bersih.

aliran at penang bersih
The organisers of the Penang rally, Aliran, gave a final shout of “Bersih!”

And with a final shout and fists in the air, the rally came to a close. Later, not only did people clear out of the field without incident, they cleaned up after themselves, and the Penang Esplanade was as spotless as ever.

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