Stop intimidating activists! – Suaram

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It is as clear as day that the “Search for missing Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim” is a public assembly consisting of activists seeking long overdue justice for Teoh Beng Hock’s death.

Police investigations against the assembly under Section 4A of the Election Offences Act is thus a blatant act of intimidation that deprives the people of their fundamental right to approach and speak to policymakers about their issues.

These tactics are not new, especially against activists peacefully assembling outside Parliament for the same purpose. The #LawanLapar assembly was a recent one last year, with Section 186 of the Penal Code used as a basis for investigations.

The police’s alleged threat to arrest activists during the assembly, followed by questions and investigations under Section 504 of the Penal Code are just as inexcusable, being attempts to delegitimise the pursuit of justice as ‘civil disobedience’ that is then justifiably repressed by the ‘rule of law’.

It is both ironic and noteworthy that these police investigations are completely antithetical to the commitment that Prime Minister Anwar made just hours before on the same day – to table the proposal that every leader, including himself, be responsible for “looking after a village to have first-hand knowledge of problems” faced by locals.

To be keen on calling “all community representatives in the village” to hear their issues but not respond to multiple active attempts by a civil society organisation over 17 months on a case of unjust death in custody only conveys double standards that cast doubt on how serious the government is in upholding the justice, transparency and accountability agenda.

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The police must immediately discontinue the probe against Ng Yap Hwa and Teoh Lee Lan.

It is also imperative that the prime minister no longer delays meeting the Teoh Beng Hock Trust for Democracy on it demands and makes concrete commitments to hold the relevant perpetrators accountable. – Suaram

Sevan Doraisamy is executive director of Suaram.

The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.
AGENDA RAKYAT - Lima perkara utama
  1. Tegakkan maruah serta kualiti kehidupan rakyat
  2. Galakkan pembangunan saksama, lestari serta tangani krisis alam sekitar
  3. Raikan kerencaman dan keterangkuman
  4. Selamatkan demokrasi dan angkatkan keluhuran undang-undang
  5. Lawan rasuah dan kronisme
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