Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Ambiga furious over ‘hate’ booklets | Free Malaysia Today

Ambiga furious over ‘hate’ booklets

RK Anand | July 10, 2012
In the latest twist to the Bersih saga, the electoral watchdog's chairperson sees red over booklets condemning the movement.
PETALING JAYA: Booklets purportedly printed by the Information Department condemning Bersih has got the electoral watchdog chairperson S Ambiga fuming.
“I am very angry. Enough is enough!” she exclaimed.

Ambiga stressed that the government must cease demonising Bersih and peddling lies to the public about the movement and its call for free and fair elections.

“The public must know the truth since public funds are being used in this process of demonisation,” she said, adding that she was alerted about the booklets by several NGOs.

The former Bar Council president said there was a concerted campaign against Bersih and this revealed the disconnect between the country’s leaders and Malaysians.

“I would have no objection if the reporting was fair. But since the Bersih 3.0 rally, all they have shown is a skewed perspective,” she said.

“This is deliberate lying by the government organs with improper motives,” she added.

Ambiga also asked if this was an attempt to influence the government’s own panel tasked to probe the violence during the April 28 rally.

Commenting further, she said the government was behaving as if it was at war with Bersih.

“They must realise that it is then a war with the rakyat.

“From April 28 till now, they have been using the heavy artillery against the unarmed rakyat. Yet I am confident that it is the unarmed rakyat fighting for justice who will prevail,” she added.

Booklet found in taxi

Meanwhile, social activist Adrian Anthony told FMT that he had chanced upon the booklet when he took a taxi from Damansara Utama this morning.

The Youth coordinator for the Catholic Graduates Movement said the booklets were in the pouch behind the front passenger’s seat.

Among others, the booklet depicted scenes of protesters attacking police vehicles during the rally, with the words: “Hidup biar beradap bukan biadap!” and “Bersih 3.0 yang kotor”.

It also called on the public to think carefully and warned them not to support the recalcitrant troublemakers or to be used as their tools.

Despite numerous attempts, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Nazri Abdul Aziz and Information, Culture and Communications Deputy Minister Maglin D’Cruz could not be reached for comments.

The Bersih 3.0 rally drew tens of thousands to the streets but violence erupted when the protesters crashed through the barricades, leading the police to fire tear gas and water cannons.

Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak later claimed that it was an attempt to topple the government, a charge which both Bersih and the opposition denied.

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