Sunday, November 16, 2008

Ridiculous Permit Conditions Couldn't Stop Them

It was a much better gathering there at the Civic Centre in Petaling Jaya than last week. Roughly 100-300 people turned up there and everyone was in good spirits, undeterred by the last week's police brutality.

Before the event began, MBPJ Councilor Richard Yeoh held a copy of the police permit that is required to hold the vigil. Given that it is in the private grounds that is under the purview of the City Council, I find it absurd when the permit features a dozen of ridiculous conditions that Haris and the people find it unacceptable.

The Permit

Below here is the letter of reply - minus headings - by the police in regards to the permission to hold the vigil. I let you judge for yourselves. First thing though is that the original text is in Malay language. But for the sake of our English readers and international readers, I'll provide the translation of the letter. This letter is a reply to Richard.

Ref: FTMT PJ 489/2008 Dlm 16/17
Date: 14 Nov 2008

Subject: Appl. For Permit to Hold People's Vigil

2. This office has made a study on the application and we're pleased to inform you that our people have no objections to the application below:

Date: 16 November 2008
Time: 8.30 - 11.30 p.m
Place: MBPJ Civic Centre Parking Lot

3. However, the following conditions have to be observed:

3.1 Safety of visitors is under the organizer's responsibility.
3.2 Permission / Approval to use the place is the organizer's responsibility.
3.3 No overflows until it causes traffic disruptions.
3.4 No political / racial speeches are allowed
3.5 No burning of fireworks or explosives unless there's permission from the appropriate party.
3.6 Dangerous weapons are not allowed.
3.7 Only allowed to be at the fixed time and place.

3.8 Organizers are not allowed to burn any candles to show objection to the ISA.
3.9 Organizers are to ensure that audience do not wear any clothes that shows support against the abolishment of the ISA.
3.10 Organizers are not allowed to hold any activities that show sympathy to the ISA detainees.
3.11 No hanging of any banners or distribution of leaflets in regards to the pushing for the abolishment of the ISA.
3.12 The police reserves the right to do audio and video recording throughout the period of the activity.

4. You are asked to obey all conditions are mentioned in paragraph 3. The police has the right to cancel the permit / approval if the organizers fail to obey the set of rules and conditions given

Thank you.


Supt. Mohd Shukor Bin Sulong
Deputy District Police Chief, Petaling Jaya

Read the last half of paragraph 3. Don't you find it pretty absurd? If use your common sense, don't you find it unnecessary? I find it that those things are like schoolboy rules. Come on, this is a public location, not a school. Most of the people who were there aren't schoolboys! School holidays just got started since yesterday...

We're not born yesterday! And this is like bullshit.

The Vigil

All the permit mumbo-jumbo, conditions and crap failed to dampen the spirit of people coming in to show their solidarity for the ISA detainees. Sorry, but I did not carry the camera this round.

There was a concurrent event held at the civic centre so the vigil was moved to an adjacent location next to the centre. As predicted more than 200 people showed. Notable people who were there including Din Merican, MPs Charles Santiago, Loh Gwo Burne and Teresa Kok. Subang Jaya assemblyperson Hannah Yeoh was there, and her assistant Edward Ling gave a rousing speech to close off the event.

We held a minute of silence in respect for Penang organizer Paula Khoo who was arrested in yesterday's vigil. Pete Kamaruddin gave a very amusing talk that said of support for Abdullah Badawi and his last five months in power. As more MPs showing up at the Civic Centre, more were stood up to give their opinions of attending the vigil, be it the first time or the sixth time.

Notable speeches were given by Din Merican and Teresa. Teresa noted that an European diplomat called Malaysia a crisis country because of this. Excerpt from Malaysiakini:
Earlier, Kok told the crowd that it was wise for the police not to interfere with the gathering.

She said that a diplomat had recently told her that Malaysia was labelled by the European Union as a ‘crisis country' because of its use of the ISA.

This, she said, would have a negative impact on foreign investment.

"I have also filed for a motion in the Parliament to propose a RM10 pay cut against Home Minister Syed Hamid Albar and Inspector General of Police Musa Hassan," she said.
There's a lot of video footage taken, both non-press and press with Malaysiakini taking the lead in capturing the footage. Of course there were a few SBs there as well. Thankfully, it was not as bad as the last week. A much detailed account can be read at Anil's blog. But since I do not have the pictures, you may have to find at other blogs that could post pictures and videos.

So the next time you want to come, viola - you are in a safe ground, but I leave it to you guys to have your say and decide on dealing with the absurd conditions.



    Light your candle within your heart
    From where it will never ever depart
    Burning bright right from the start
    Free from the control of any upstart

    (C)Samuel Goh Kim Eng - 161108
    Sun. 16th Nov. 2008.


    When you do what you honestly think is right
    Then let there be no fear at all or any fright
    It's natural to wonder about your future bright
    Yet you'll never be alone once you're in public sight

    (C) Samuel Goh Kim Eng - 171108
    Mon. 17th Nov. 2008.

    (Ref: Paula Khoo)

    When you live life with real passion
    You'll get your share of compassion
    Without any room for any depression
    You'll be able to rise above any occasion

    (c)Samuel Goh Kim Eng - 171108
    Mon. 17th Nov. 2008.


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