Monday, October 27, 2014

Let me tell Najib that his failure to keep his pledge to repeal the Sedition Act and with the political prosecution of oppositionists, he will definitely go down in history as a pseudo reformist.



Press Statement by M Kula, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 27th October, 2014

Let me tell Najib that his failure to keep his pledge to repeal the Sedition Act and with the political prosecution of oppositionists, he will definitely go down in history as a pseudo reformist.

Today is the 27th anniversary of the infamous Operasi Lalang. On October 27, 1987, more than 100 persons comprising politicians, educationists, activists, intellectuals were detained under the draconian Internal Security Act. 

It was a day of darkness in Malaysian history. 

It was also the worst abuse of the Act and the crackdown also saw the  he revoking of the publishing licenses of two dailies, The Star and Sin Chew Jit Poh and two weeklies, The Sunday Star and the Watan.

Today, Tun Mahathir who was responsible for the crackdown has long retired but the government still owes those detained an apology.

Datuk Seri Najib has started his premiership six years ago with talk of 1 Malaysia and moderation concepts as well as promises of political reforms, but what we see today is not what he has promised.

Despite his talk about 1 Malaysia concept and the value of moderation, he is not able to walk his talk and has remained silent when extremists continue to play with racial and religious fires.

Although the draconian Internal Security Act has been repealed, a new political crack down in the form of sedition blitz against government critics has taken place. 

Najib has promised to repeal the 1948 Sedition Act in 2012 but till today, he has yet to fulfil his pledge. Worse, the Act has become the new weapon to stifle political dissent and silence government critics. 

Many opposition lawmakers have faced court prosecution, yet Perkasa president Ibrahim Ali who has threatened to burn the Bibles has not been charged. 

De facto Minister Nancy Sukri’s explanation that Ibrahim was merely defending Islam met with strong and massive criticism, yet the Prime Minister has remained silent. .

Let me tell Najib that his failure to keep his pledge to repeal the Sedition Act and with the political prosecution  of oppositionists, he will definitely go down in history as a pseudo reformist.

I wish to remind Najib that the public do not have short memories and still remember his 2012 challenge to the opposition. 

In 2012, when commenting on the Bersih 3.0 sit in protest which attracted 200, 000 participants, Najib had said:-

“To these people, I challenge them to fight' at the ballot box. If you are anak jantan (man), let us fight there."

So I wish to challenge the Prime Minister to stop the political persecution of opposition lawmakers and fight the opposition fair and square at the next general election.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Call on IGP Tan Sri Khalid to support the immediate setting up of IPCMC



Press Statement by M Kula Segaran, DAP National Vice Chairman and MP for Ipoh Barat in Ipoh on 25th October, 2014

Call on IGP Tan Sri Khalid to support the immediate setting up of IPCMC

Despite the continued occurrences of custodial deaths, the federal government’scontinued refusal to set up the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission (IPCMC) recommended by the Royal Commission of Inquiry headed by Tun Mohamed Dzaiddin Abdullah, is most disappointing and even irresponsible.

The main excuse given by the government is that the setting up of the Enforcement Agency Integrity Commission (EAIC) is sufficient.

But time has proven that EAIC has failed to stop more custodial deaths from happening since it was set up in 2011.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) in its “ No Answers, No Apology: Police Abuses and Accountability“ report released  in April this year in Kuala Lumpur revealed that just 7% of complaints against the police force between 2005 and 2012 reached a courtroom while more than half the cases has yet to be fully investigated.

From extrajudicial killings of teenagers to custodial deaths, threats to lawyers and assaults on journalists covering demonstrations, the report gives chilling and bloody first-person accounts of police abuse and misconduct.

The report without a doubt further showed the urgency of setting up an external oversight body like IPCMC.

But the government is still adamant in refusing to set up the IPCMC when such oversight body has been set up in many other countries.

It is no secret that the Police leadership has always been opposing the setting up of the IPCMC.

Yesterday, Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar said that the police were not in favour of the setting up of IPCMC last year because the terms in the proposal treated the force like second-class citizens.  

He said the proposal gave members of the force no avenue for justice.
“For instance, in the proposal, a policeman picked up for corruption does not have the right to defend himself,” he was quoted as saying.

Was Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar saying that the police will support IPCMC formation if the required changes are made?

On June 29 last year, former IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan called on the government to set up IPCMC after the Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar was ruled responsible for A Kugan’s death under custody.

In a landmark civil suit, the High Court had ruled that Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, at that time the Selangor police chief, was liable to misfeasance in A. Kugan’s death behind bars in 2009. 

“You need monitoring, of course, on the police,” Musa told The Malay Mail Online. He also proposed that changes be made to allow appeal against IPCMC decisions.

What Tan Sri Kahlid Bakar said yesterday was no different from what Tan Sri Musa said more than a year.

I wonder why it took Khalid Bakar more than a year to state his position.

Nevertheless, since Tan Sri Khalid Bakar has stated his position, I call on him to propose the necessary changes to the government and to express his full support for the immediate setting up of the long delayed IPCMC.

There need to be independent investigative body to look into complaints of wrong doings by the police. By establishing this like IPCMC it will enhance the confidence on the police and their investigations.

The bottom line is the police cannot and should not be given the exclusive monopoly of investigating their own wrongs. The police should not be judge, jury and prosecutor of complaints and wrong doings against its own personnel.