THE PREVIEW OF POLICE’S ABILITY TO MAINTAIN PEACE AND ORDER

THE PREVIEW OF POLICE’S ABILITY TO MAINTAIN PEACE AND ORDER

 

Press Statement: 15th January, 2013

 

SUARAM is of the view that the facilitative as opposed to clamp-down approach demonstrated by the Royal Malaysian Police on 12/1/2013 during KL112 was a positive change and appears to be a step in the right direction to future exercise of freedoms in peaceful assemblies.

SUARAM’s monitoring and urgent arrest team observed that the police had chose not to repeat the heavy-handed actions that led to many untoward incidents during BERSIH 3.0. The KL112 approach begs the question as to whether the government and the police are now sincere to maintain the same standard of professionalism and respect to peaceful participants in future assemblies. If the similar approach were used during BERSIH 3.0 and other past rallies, injuries and damages caused to the participants would very well be kept at the sifar zone.

However, SUARAM condemns the apprehension of participants post KL112 in what appears to be the S.O.P of the police acting under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012. Credit and compliments obtained by the police at KL112 quickly lost colour as the police announced that they would investigate participants for alleged violations of the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012.

 

SUARAM is concerned on the investigation and states that children shall not be discriminated and shall be allowed to freely exercise their legitimate right to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association without undue restrictions from the State in accordance to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child, in which Malaysia was a State Party to the same since January 1995.

 

The Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 clearly contradicts the Convention and other international human rights instruments and is, and still is the stumbling block to the legitimate exercise of fundamental rights of the people.

 

In the absence of sincerity and genuine political will, we will continue to experience a flip-flop endowment of freedoms at the expense of the people, as and when it suits the political climate best. Regardless, SUARAM strongly urge the police to liberate themselves from political instructions and put their second foot forward to walk the talk of being a professional and accountable institution with integrity.

 

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