For a while, due probably to the end of semester exams and essay submission due date, I wasn’t following events in Malaysia all too closely. I then discovered, about 2-3 weeks ago, the planned activities of Bersih 2.0 and thought “wow, this should be great”.
I haven’t been disappointed.
For over 2 weeks I have jumped on the usual websites (Malaysiakini, Malaysia Today etc) and have picked up reports concerning 9 July 2011. More importantly, I have picked up vibes about the how people feel, leading up to the event.
I haven’t been disappointed.
The responses of the authorities have been expectedly empty gong loud noises. There haven’t been any substantive responses to the cause of Bersih. The cause is very clear, and it is made up of the following:
1. Clean the electoral roll
2. Reform postal ballot
- Use of indelible ink
- Minimum 21 days campaign period
- Free and fair access to media
- Strengthen public institutions
- Stop corruption
- Stop dirty politics
Instead of addressing the matter in substance, it has branded the movement in a number of ways, none of which demonstrate that Bersih is anything other than what it claims it is fighting for. Like I said, Ambiga Sreenevasan is fair dinkum. You cant fault her. She may be nice – after all she was a dutiful rakyat who heeded her Agong’s call – but she is also clean and has nothing to fear or lose, except her personal liberty maybe. I expected Ambiga Sreenevasan and her team to hold steadfast to the cause and I haven’t been disappointed.
It is such an exciting time to be in Malaysia, particularly in KL. It wouldn’t be pretty. It would be tense. But it is exciting, because you could sense change coming. Maybe Najib Razak did too. Maybe that is why he has run away for now. Maybe intelligence tells him (not his, Najib doesn’t have a lot of intelligence I don’t think – I meant that of the Special Branch) it isn’t safe to be in the country as this could lead to anything. Maybe the actions of the authorities, especially the police, leading up to 9 July has been such that the people would at long last, say enough is enough and they would rise and take no more of this rubbish the hopelessly finished BN government continues to dish out.
I will participate by remote presence. I will be in the Melbourne chapter. Tomorrow is expected to be a little cold, and even wet. But it is an opportunity to be part of something special. Federation Square will be Merdeka Square for me tomorrow. Thank you Bersih. Thank you Ambiga Sreenevasan.
- Running Scared in Malaysia: The government of Najib Razak is demonizing protesters demanding free and fair elections.. (thesail.wordpress.com)
- John Malott on BERSIH2.0 (dinmerican.wordpress.com)
- Malaysian Opposition Backs Off from Street Rally Threat (stevebeckow.com)
- PROHAM to Prime Minister Najib: Heed the King’s Advice (dinmerican.wordpress.com)
- The Malaysian Insider Perspective on BERSIH2.0 (dinmerican.wordpress.com)