The PROTES rally was held today at Kelana Jaya stadium. I came with the usual denizens of the Wharf, (Gus, Benny and Art). We had reports from everywhere saying that there are roadblocks within the vicinity of in and out of the stadium in Kelana Jaya, but we did not see any military vehicles or personnel on the way there.
We thought that Anwar would be there in the morning, and so we decided to be there after the speech. But we were told that Anwar would only be there at night and in his place is the rally co-coordinator and PKR man, Chegubard. Also, we learned that night time, the Pakatan heads with the Chief Ministers from the 5 states would be participating in the rally with some MPs.
The usual suspects of bloggers were there including Old Sea Dog, who lives behind the stadium and of course Capt. Lokman. Haris came with Michelle and some others later at 1.30 p.m but left early. When we first came, we noticed that the number was around 7 to 10 thousand as according to the media.
Throughout the whole day, there has been constant chants of 'Turun, turun' and 'Hidup Rakyat'. We encountered several politicians including Gwo Burne, William Leong, Arutchelvam, Mat Sabu, Azmin Ali and Nasir Hashim. At around 3.15 p.m, the numbers started to swell, with the arrival of Sabu and Azmin.
The color red reminded me of the Bolshelvik Revolution and it's PSM pamphlet contains similar themes that concentrate on the socialism, a dirty word in the current world of capitalism.
Capt. Lokman spotted some SB men up on the GLOMAC 3 building and we suspected that those men are using communications jamming equipment to prevent people from sending text messages. This could one of the factors that the rally didn't meet most of the objectives, in which I explain later. Later on, there was a helicopter circling around the stadium and at the third circling, the helicopter went low and everyone in the stadium reacted at the chopper as if the other police officers wanted to snoop on them.
We didn't stay until nightfall, but we left at around 5 p.m, with most of us gone back already. It's already turned into a fun fair since it is confined into just one place.
At night, apart from the main event, some incidents occured in which :
1. 700 Unit Amal men quit in disgust over the rock band antics (strip show)
2. A man attempts to reach Anwar after he finishes his speech.
Here's me and with Capt. Lokman and other bloggers: (pic by Capt. Yusof)
Notes and observations
1. GERAMM set an unrealistic objective of 1 million people. They should have set lower than that. Today marks the first day of the Malaysian Mega Sale, which is why people go for shopping today. Also, the news (which is a lie) that military vehicles placed along the vicinity of the stadium is an act of intimidating people from attending the rally. The planning wasn't as meticulous than the one made during the Bersih rally, November 10.
2. The time given is way dragging too long. We observed that by the time of afternoon prayers, the momentum is lost. I thought it would be more appropriate if they reduce it to a 6 hour timeslot to accomodate everything.
3. You tend to feel different if this is held in a stadium instead of in the streets. Of course doing it in the streets would cause massive jams but it ropes in people who feel that they should they have a valid point of going for their cause. It also attracts much better attention than doing it in SMSes.
4. Again, Syed Hamid Albar and the gang misused tax payer's money and misuing resources in calling police, military and equipement just for this rally itself. They could have done something better than wasting a million ringgit for today's show.
5. WE WERE DUPED by MSM and Musa Hassan. Remember of 'military presence' as join exercise. There was no military presence at all there.
Additional photos can be viewed at my Facebook photo album here.
Old Sea Dog - Anti-fuel hike rally
Galadriel - Jom Protes Carnival
Haris - Jangan lupa, ingat! Rakyat Bersatu Takkan Kalah!