Universiti Malaya mesti menggugurkan semua tuduhan terhadap aktivis-aktivis siswa

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Students partipating in a #TangkapMO1 protest rally - Photograph: @PutraREFORMASI

[English version below] Bersih 2.0 mengutuk tindakan Universiti Malaya yang telah mendakwa bersalah Anis Syafiqah Md Yusof, Suhail Wan Azahar, Luqman Nul Haqim Zul Razali, dan Muhammad Luqman Hakim Mohd Fazli atas sebab disiplin berhubungan perhimpunan Tangkap MO1 yang diadakan pada bulan Ogos 2016.

Kami terkejut bahawa institusi pendidikan sanggup menghukum mahasiswanya yang cuma ingin menggunakan hak bersuara, berhimpun, dan bersekutu sepertimana yang tertera dalam Artikel 10 Perlembagaan Persekutuan. Perhimpunan tersebut hanya adalah salah satu aspek penting demokrasi bermatang yang memang wajar digunakan.

Soalan-soalan yang dibentangkan oleh siswa-siswi tersebut sewaktu perhimpunan dilangsungkan berkait dengan rasuah dan isu pentadbiran kerajaan yang telah diabaikan oleh pihak berkuasa dan merupakan soalan-soalan yang wajib dijawab.

Dengan menimbulkan soalan-soalan penting ini, mereka sebulat suara tangkas menunjukkan pemahaman mereka terhadap peranan dan tanggungjawab mereka di kalangan masyarakat Malaysia. Masa sudah tiba untuk kerajaan menyahut cabaran ini dan membalas sewajarnya.

Tuduhan-tuduhan disiplin yang mahasiswa didakwa bersalah – merosakkan dan memudaratkan kepentingan dan kesejahteraan nama baik universiti, merosakkan dan memudaratkan keselamatan awam, dan melanggar peraturan universiti – langsung tidak boleh diterima dan cuma digunakan sebagai alasan untuk menghukum dan membasmi sebarang perbezaan pendapat.

Malah, mereka tidak didakwa di mahkamah luar kerana mereka telah berhimpun secara aman.

Membuli mahasiswa dengan menggunakan tatacara disiplin yang tidak adil dan menjatuhkan hukuman berat tidak akan memanfaatkan pihak pentadbiran Universiti Malaya terutamanya dalam perjuangan mereka untuk merampas semula kedudukan universiti kelas pertama di arena ini.

Institusi-institusi pendidikan tinggi adalah tempat di mana pengetahuan dan pemikiran kritikal harus ditanam dan digalakkan, dan bukan dibenamkan demi pemeliharaan sebarang pihak. Sebarang tindakan membungkam suara-suara mahasiswa mestilah dihentikan. Malaysia adalah sebuah negara dengan demokrasi yang kian berkembang dan proses pentadbiran negara yang merangkumi semua patut ditekankan.

Bersih 2.0 menggesa Universiti Malaya untuk menggugurkan semua tuduhan disiplin ke atas mahasiswanya, dan cuba menggalakkan wacana dengan memulakan dialog di antara mahasiswanya dan pihak-pihak berkuasa.

Ini akan membuka ruang selamat bagi mahasiswa untuk menyatakan pendapat-pendapat mereka terhadap kerajaan dan sebaliknya, sekaligus mencerminkan kedudukan baik Universiti Malaya sebagai satu institusi pendidikan yang mementingkan sikap keterbukaannya dan pemikiran kritikal.

Bersih 2.0 turut menyeru semua rakyat Malaysia untuk mengumumkan solidarity bersama dengan Anis, Suhail, Luqman Haqim, dan Muhammad Luqman dengan menandatangani petisyen ini yang menggesa agar tuduhan-tuduhan terhadap mereka digugurkan.

Belia muda akan mewarisi negara kita dan pihak berkuasa wajib meneliti pemikiran mereka.

Satukan tenaga, Malaysia baru.

Ahli jawatankuasa pemandu Bersih 2.0

Universiti Malaya must drop all charges against student activists

Bersih 2.0 condemns the actions of University of Malaya in finding Anis Syafiqah Md Yusof, Suhail Wan Azahar, Luqman Nul Haqim Zul Razali, and Muhammad Luqman Hakim Mohd Fazli guilty of disciplinary charges for the Tangkap MO1 rally held in August 2016.

We are shocked that our educational institutions could even consider punishing their students who were merely exercising their freedom of speech, assembly, and association as enshrined in Article 10 of our Federal Constitution.  The rally was part and parcel of what a thriving democracy should be engaging in.

The questions raised by students at the rally are valid issues on corruption and governance that have yet to be addressed by the authorities and they are questions that need to be answered.

The students have all but shown us that they understand their roles and responsibilities in society by raising critical questions. It is now for the government to take up the challenge and respond appropriately.

The disciplinary charges they are found guilty of – acting in a manner detrimental and prejudicial to the interests and good reputation of the university, detrimental to public safety, and in violation of the university’s regulations – are ludicrous and simply used as an excuse to punish and stamp out dissent.

They were not even charged in a court of law as they assembled peacefully.

Bullying students through unfair disciplinary procedures and possibly passing heavy penalties does not bode well for the University of Malaya administration especially when it is aiming to regain its former status as a first-class university in the global arena.

Institutions of higher learning are places where knowledge and critical thinking are supposed to be cultivated and encouraged, not muzzled to maintain the status quo. Silencing student voices must stop.

Malaysia is a growing democracy and a more inclusive governance needs to be promoted.

Bersih 2.0 strongly urges the University of Malaya to drop all disciplinary charges against the students. Instead, the university should encourage discourse by initiating a healthy dialogue between the students and the relevant authorities.

This will open up safe spaces for students to express their views to the government and vice versa, reflecting well on the university as an educational institution that fosters openness and critical thinking.
Bersih 2.0 also urges fellow Malaysians to stand in solidarity with Anis, Suhail, Luqman Haqim, and Muhammad Luqman by signing this petition calling for all charges against them to be dropped.

The youth will inherit the country and it would do the authorities well to listen to them.

Satukan tenaga, Malaysia baru.

Bersih 2.0 steering committee members

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