Organisers of the mammoth #KL112 rally held in Malaysia’s historic Stadium Merdeka have estimated a crowd attendance of at least 500,000-less than their one million target but more than enough to send a shiver through Prime Minister Najib Razak’s government.
“This show of strength is a real warning to the Umno-BN. If they continue to cheat at the general election, the Malaysian people won’t stand for it. They will come out to the streets & demand justice,” Hishamuddin Rais, a prominent activist who sits of the #KL112 organising committee.
Hishammuddin also sits on the steering committee of free & fairpolls movement BERSIH.
Police fudging the numbers?
The official figure released by the HKR #KL112 committee makes Saturday’s rally the largest ever in Malaysia, topping last year’s BERSIH 3.0 which drew more than 250,000. Those present at the Stadium are not surprised at the number.
However,what was shocking were the estimates furnished by the police & used by the government-controlled media. These ranged from a paltry 50,000 to 100,000 & can easily debunked as within the stadium itself & its immediate compound, there would have been at least 150,000. Including the crowds that met at the 8 designated meeting points & along the way to the Stadium, there were tens of thousands more.
But apart from possibly fudging the numbers, police who were out in full force were on their best behaviour, helping to control the crowd which was remarkably disciplined & well-behaved.
“Malaysians are well-known to be adocile & modest people. This is why when the violence broke out in BERSIH 3.0, the police & umno-BN were blamed for planting provocateurs. I am glad it didn’t happen again this time,” said Hishamuddin.
The #KL112 rally, also called the Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat or the People’s Awakening Rally, has 10 major objectives. They are:
1.A call for clean, fair & transparent elections with a free & independent press
2.A call for the prestige, image & reputation of FELDA to be saved by guaranteeing its agricultural role in the economy & the land ownership of the settlers.
3.Fair treatment & allocations to Sabah & Sarawak vis-a-vis Peninsular Malaysia
4.20% of oil royalty to be returned to the producing states
5.To raise professionalism, assure welfare & protect the future of civil servants including teachers & the armed forces
6.A call for a green environment that is clean & wholesome
7.A call for the national language to be supported, vernacular language to be preserved & standards of English to be raised in the education system, with free education for all Malaysian citizens.
8.A call to free all political detainees who have been unfairly imprisoned
9.A call for all traditional villages & places of heritage to be preserved,protected & defended
10.A call for a better lifestyle for women as promised in the Agenda Wanita Malaysia (The Malaysian Women’s Agenda)
Copyright 2013 by Malaysia Chronicle