Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Dollah Macam Tak Nak Jumpa....But...

Hindraf and the civil-conscious group of people who opposed the ISA today grouped together to go to the PWTC for the PM's open house.

They came into PWTC with a message to be delivered to Dollah Badawi personally: release" all ISA detainees. We mean business."

I was tagging along with fellow bloggers and a few activists. I met them at Secret Recipe opposite The Mall before going there. Everyone is already dressed in red, black or orange T-shirts to express the message of rejecting the misuse of ISA. A little info from Malik Sarwar indicates that a second habeas corpus was filed. The first one was because of the police recommendation, while the second one is against the signing by Botak Albar.

Bloggers and some people gathered at Secret Recipe before going.

The Hindraf Group

At 11.15 a.m we started to move to PWTC. While we were moving, we saw many in orange, the HINDRAF group. They were intending to reach there with the same message. Compare to a dozen or two of civil-conscious group, the number of orange people was around 500.

At 11.30 when we reached there, the group was met with resistance from the men in blue. There, it was the same man, ASP Sydney Jeremiah that was telling them they were under instructions to not allow those wearing the shirts to enter into the building.

Of course this has attracted the attention of reporters and other passer-bys. Haris and Amarjit was haggling with the police and some of the officials. It took them 30 minutes and by intervention of some officials before they were allowed to enter in. As soon as we entered in, Hindraf came in a big group and tried to enter as well. They did.

Amarjit and Haris saying thanks to ASP Sydney Jeremiah after much of haggling.

You're going to have a hard time lining up.

As usual like last year, the crowd swelled, eager to meet Dollah and the ministers. But it seems that the PWTC people are trying to play a game of diverting the HINDRAF and the group from meeting them. I remembered at the point where there is a live feed, you usually take an escalator to go up - that's the route of going to the 4th floor. But going right just takes you to the food, and nothing else. Everyone went right. I think at that time, the VIP period wasn't over yet.

Of course it ended up as a false end. And we ended unable to go up to the 4th floor.

Anyhow, the crowd decided to try one more time using a different route. They used the staircase and discovered the VIP route. The routed ends up at Dollah and his entourage shaking hands with guests.

Of course, the HINDRAF group was caught in the melee. But I managed to sneak past them and followed behind someone. Thankfully, a PWTC guy allowed me - since I was tagging with a guy behind him to go inside the hall.

Finally, I managed to shake hands with a few ministers. Of course, it's Dollah, Jeanne, Najib, Nor Yackop and of course finally Hisham Hussein. Among them Kerishamuddin was the most cheerful of all, besides exchanging pleasantries, he asked me where I was from. I merely told him, "We're La Sallians!" He chuckled.

The anti-ISA activist who was with me told me how Dollah's face went plume the moment he saw HINDRAF and those wearing anti-ISA T-shirts. From the way the party was diverted it seems that he doesn't want to see them. The Malaysian Insider has one interesting line that was quoted from him that said: "I cannot have a special meeting with anyone. It is an open house." I thought it means it is against forgiveness that he emphasized the night before.

When he shook hands with Najib, the hand moves in a way of saying "go away". As for me, his head was turning away before he looked at me. I thought it's like saying no interest in meeting.

After a while, Haris and other people of the Hartal event met Dollah Badawi and told him: "Datuk Seri, please release all ISA detainees immediately. Please, please please." Hindraf would also come in to present gifts and a card for Dollah. Dollah reluctantly gave his Mr. Clean smile.

As a sign of protest, they did not touch food served to visitors in PWTC.

Mission Accomplished (pic by Malaysiakini)

We gathered at one corner after they entered. Mission accomplished.

They have sent a message to him. Now the ball is at his corner.

One Last Pic Before I Left

Haris has his posting up at his blog plus pictures.


  1. No offense, but i think that was rude. There's always proper time and place to do what is proper (but it is definitely a 'proper' free publicity for you. I agree with what u fight for, but being rude is so unacceptable. Owh..u really know how to read ppl smile and hand-shake do you? Maybe u should review your stand again coz when we're headed towards some extreminities, we are tend to be bias, and will be a perfect tool for someone manipulative. It won't hurt to take a deep breath and look back and look around you.. is this the best for Malaysia? Sadly no... not really. Good luck in what you fighting for, just don't sacrifice this beloved country while doing it.
    p/s this is only my two cent. for you only. i don't need any publicity anyway. If there's a choice of being clever but rude and stupid but polite.. i'll be the dumb waiter anytime. ;) Hv a nice day.


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