- Explain blacklist, Sabah PKR rep tells state BN
- The Baling spirit lives on
- Anwar: Perubahan didorong anak muda, tangkas padam api perkauman
Posted: 03 Jun 2013 03:15 AM PDT
Sabah PKR MP Darell Leiking today demanded the state spell out how long it is barring entry to opposition leaders, saying the information was crucial to help plan future programmes.
Specifically referring to the deportation of Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar last Thursday, Leiking questioned if Sabah Deputy Speaker Datuk Johnny Mositun had been accurate when he claimed the ban had just been for a day.
"Can I ask Datuk Johnny Mositun on what is that 'threat to the state security' that Nurul Izzah poses to Sabah and can he confirm that she is banned only for that day only?
"His verification will be of great help for us to find out and to get bottom of the facts as there are many speculations as to why Nurul was denied entry and deported from Sabah," the Penampang MP said in a statement here.
"Also, a verification from the deputy Speaker of the State assembly on whether the 'ban' is only for one day is also a crucial information as that would assist Nurul on her future programmes in Sabah," he added.
Leiking was referring to Mositun's remarks in the Daily Express today where the latter was quoted saying that Nurul Izzah had been barred from entering Sabah last week for just a day and because she was deemed a threat to state security.
From the statement, Leiking said it was reasonable to assume that Mositun was privy and aware of the actual reason behind Nurul Izzah's deportation.
The deputy PKR secretary-general, however, also asked for confirmation from Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman on whether the ban had been a pre-planned decision by the state Cabinet.
Earlier today, The Malaysian Insider reported the contents of a leaked letter from Musa's office to the state's Immigration Department confirming that apart from Nurul Izzah, her father Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Lim Kit Siang, Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan and Rafizi Ramli are also on a blacklist barring them from entering the east Malaysian state.
The May 21 letter, which sports the letterhead from Musa's office, also says the list was given the Sabah Cabinet's stamp of approval following its first meeting last month on May 15 – 10 days after the 13th general election.
"The Cabinet has agreed that the chief minister invoke his absolute powers under the Immigration Act, and in accordance with certification from the Sabah Royal Malaysian Police Special Branch chief, not to land these individuals to Sabah," the letter said, before it listed out the names of the five politicians and Bersih 2.0 co-chairman.
According to Sabah DAP chief Jimmy Wong, a reliable source from the Immigration Department had leaked a copy of the first page of the document to him.
The document was emailed to The Malaysian Insider this morning. From the single page, the duration of the blacklist or its reason, was not stated.
When contacted, Lim described the ban "ridiculous", pointing out that the government was making a mockery of democracy by not only banning its own citizens from entering a state in the country, but legally elected representatives.
"Of course this is not my first time… I am probably the most banned leader… I've been banned from Sabah, from Sarawak… but I thought we have passed those days.
"It looks like we are still in the thick of it," he complained.
Last Thursday, Nurul Izzah was barred from entering Sabah upon arriving in Kota Kinabalu to celebrate Pesta Kaamatan, or the Harvest Festival, in her personal capacity.
Explaining the ban on Saturday, Musa was reported saying that those who pose a threat to the Sabah ideals of peace harmony will not be welcomed to the state.
He added that state never restricted other opposition leaders before the polls, but believed Nurul Izzah had different intentions this time.
"Now that the elections are over, their leader refuses to accept the verdict. It is a case of sour grapes and ungentlemanly conduct. He wants to rile up the masses to rally throughout the country to show his, and I repeat, his discontent," he said.
"We have reason to believe that Nurul Izzah's intentions to come to Sabah, this time around, may not be as innocent as she or her fellow opposition members make it out to be," he added.
Posted: 03 Jun 2013 03:12 AM PDT
Thirty-nine years ago, a little-known incident in Baling caused a seismic shift in Malaysian politics, but very few Malaysians are aware of the incident or realise its significance and the impact it created.
If the full details of this incident had been divulged in 1974, the government might have fallen. The Baling incident caused a nightmare for Abdul Razak Hussein, the prime minister at the time.
Today, the nightmare is recurring for Najib Abdul Razak, the leader of the current minority government. Najib feels he has no alternative but to instigate several crackdowns on the rakyat.
The Baling event referred to is not the historic meeting in 1955 of Tunku Abdul Rahman, who was the head of the Malayan government and Chin Peng, the leader of the Communist Party of Malaya (CPM).
Nor was it the Memali Incident of 1985, the shameful massacre of a defenceless community by forces loyal to Dr Mahathir Mohamad's government.
The Baling Incident (BI) which occurred in 1974 was shrouded in secrecy. It was a series of many small expressions of the bottled-up feelings of anger, betrayal, fear and resentment, of the rural poor.
In present-day Malaysia, the rakyat participated in democracy marches and rallies against oppression, injustice and the dictatorial rule of Najib and the BN government. In 1974, it was Abdul Razak, Najib's father, who faced similar marches against social injustices.
The root cause of the BI was abject poverty and starvation. The rubber smallholders faced ruin when the global price of rubber plummeted. The farmers could not cope with the rising cost of living and rural families had to forage for food in the jungles.
Bizarrely, in 1974 Abdul Razak (right) announced in Parliament that the civil servants' allowance would be increased by 50 percent, from RM1,000 to RM1,500.
When news broke of the deaths of a few children from eating ubi gadong, a type of poisonous wild yam, to stave off hunger pangs, the social unrest reached a tipping point. At its peak, around 25,000 of the rural poor took to the streets.
Like father, like son; both Abdul Razak and Najib unleashed the might of the FRU and the police on peaceful protesters. Najib is a politician without imagination, but he knew that brutal action had served his father well.
A dark chapter in our history
In 2013 Najib merely employed his father's tried and tested methods of retaliation. The consequences of 1974 opened a dark chapter in our history.
Then, like now, information was heavily censored. Abdul Razak did not want the rakyat to know that an uprising had occurred in Kedah.
Five years earlier, the country had been overwhelmed by the May 13 clashes. The Chinese were convenient scapegoats.
Abdul Razak was in a quandary. The district of Baling was mainly populated by Malays. The significance of the BI had to be suppressed.
In the BI there was no Chinese element, or communist subversives at work. BI was social unrest – a revolt by Malay smallholders and farmers. Peaceful hunger marches throughout Baling spread outwards from Baling town, Kulim and Sik.
News travelled fast and despite media censorship in 1974, students at Universiti Malaya, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia and Kolej Mara, as well as the universities' teaching fraternity expressed their support for the uprising. They organised a series of meetings and urged the government to address the plight of the poor.
Syed Husin Ali (right), then an associate professor at Universiti Malaya, said: "At first they (the students) demonstrated within their campus. The police fired tear gas but some cannisters landed on the nearby squatter settlement, injuring some children.
"The students joined forces and gathered in the centre of KL. When the police acted against them, they took refuge in the National Mosque. Over 1,000 students were arrested and detained for a few days.
"Some squatters joined some students to 'run riot' at the highway, putting up blockades and smashing traffic lights."
Abdul Razak warned of tough reprisals and over 40 students and lecturers were detained under the ISA. Among them was Anwar Ibrahim, who was detained for two years.
Syed Husin said: "I was detained for six years. I was an associate professor and considered recalcitrant for refusing to admit guilt.
"I was accused of being pro-communist and the brain behind the demos. They wanted me to serve as an example to create fear among those academic staff to prevent them from following my path.
"I think these are the reasons why I was incarcerated up to six years."
The education minister then was Mahathir. He and Ungku Aziz, the vice-chancellor of UM at the time, produced the Universities and University Colleges Act (UUCA).
The UUCA has effectively curbed students' freedom and deprived universities of their autonomy. Students and lecturers are fearful of speaking out on issues which are deemed sensitive to BN. Our universities have never recovered from Mahathir's despicable legacy.
Abdul Razak, his peers and successors' children were sent abroad for their education, whilst the rest of the rakyat received a stifling Malaysian schooling.
Baling not an isolated incident
In 2013, history repeated itself and the nightmare which descended on Najib's father is now his own.
Today, Najib has warned that he would get tough with students Adam Adli Abdul Halim and Safwan Anang as well as other dissenters. The ISA has been repealed, so what has Najib up his sleeve?
Let this column warn both Najib and Mahathir, the joint rulers of Malaysia that their efforts to subjugate the rakyat will not succeed. Baling was not an isolated incident.
Prior to BI, there were unreported acts of unrest against the BN government. In Tasik Utara, Johor Baru, poor urban Malays camped in front the residence of then MB Osman Saat to voice their disgust at being cheated of housing and land.
In 1974 and in 2013, the Malays opposed the government, but Najib has created a red herring and claimed that in GE13, it was a Chinese tsunami.
It is not! It is Malaysians fighting tyranny.
The wounds which Abdul Razak, Mahathir and Najib opened are still festering. Our awareness of their crimes and of their despotic rule are more acute.
Their policies have cast long shadows and there will be more Baling incidents until Najib and the illegitimate BN government step down.
Posted: 03 Jun 2013 03:09 AM PDT
Kebangkitan anak muda pelbagai bangsa di Malaysia menuntut perubahan sosial, ekonomi dan politik adalah yang terbesar pernah berlaku dalam sejarah negara ini, kata Ketua Umum KEADILAN, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
Justeru, percubaan media Umno-BN mencetus sentimen perkauman untuk memecah-belahkan rakyat tidak akan berjaya kerana desakan perubahan lebih kuat didorong golongan muda di Malaysia.
"Kemahuan anak muda untuk perubahan sangat tinggi. Lihat di kiri dan kanan kita. Mereka (kerajaan) tidak sedar. Desakan perubahan digerakkan oleh mereka. Majoritinya anak muda.
"Makna kebebasan dan wacana sekarang ini ialah tentang kefahaman antara bangsa-bangsa. Ini pilihan pada masa akan datang," kata Anwar dalam program wacana bersama Profesor Dr James Piscatori dari Univesiti Durham di kediamannya semalam.
Anwar menceritakan pengalamannya dalam gerakan Angkatan Belia Islam Malaysia (ABIM) yang membincangkan isu poltik Islam dan masyarakat Melayu berdepan dengan hujah perkauman dilontarkan Umno-BN ketika itu.
"Semenjak saya dari zaman ABIM, kita berhadapan dengan isu kelangsungan politik Melayu-Islam. Ia sebenarnya satu desakan dan isu ini relevan untuk dibahaskan," kata Anwar
Namun, Anwar menegaskan beliau ketika itu tetap mengambil pendirian untuk menentang pendekatan politik perkauman yang diamalkan Umno-BN.
Malah katanya, kaedah itu diteruskan oleh rejim yang sama hari ini sebelum dan semasa kempen pilihan raya umum ke-13 berlangsung.
Namun, beliau yakin kelompok muda di Malaysia telah memahami sejarah dan menolak agenda sempit yang cuba disebarkan.
"Saya bangga dengan anak muda," kata Anwar menegaskan setiap anak muda meskipun dari agama yang berlainan tetap mempunyai peranan dalam agenda perubahan.
Anwar merujuk pandangan ahli falsafah Perancis, Alexis de Tocqueville yang menulis di dalam karya 'Revolt of the Masses' bahawa kebangkitan itu itu datangnya daripada rakyat, manakala parti politik hanya sebagai 'kenderaan' untuk membawa tujuan.
"Meskipun dalam keadaan media Malaysia yang tidak bebas, kita masih boleh mempertahankan keyakinan kita," katanya.
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