Ongoing Investigations Should Not Be Disturbed

The BERSIH 2.0 Steering Committee takes note that the Home Minister, Hishammuddin Tun Hussein, has finally decided not to release his Ministry’s “video compilation, containing footages of what transpired during the BERSIH 3.0 rally last 28 April 2012”. However, we question the manner in which the Home Minister initially announced the release of the video clips, which he repeated for several days, and then flip-flopped and announced that the public release of the video would be held back and be given instead to the so-called Independent Advisory Panel as part of its investigation.
We are surprised that the Home Minister even felt that it was right to release such video clips before the investigation had commenced. Such an act would only have encouraged “trial by media” which would have consequently exerted undue influence on the Panel’s perception of what happened at the 28 April BERSIH 3.0 rally.
Former IGP Hanif Omar should have also raise objection to the release of the video clips but instead agreed with the Home Ministry’s recommendation. This again raises the question of the suitability and integrity of the Panel set up by the Home Ministry, which Hanif leads.
As we have previously stated, the Panel’s establishment is highly problematic due to serious concerns on its lack of a legal framework and powers.  Its membership is also questionable, especially when its head, Hanif Omar, had made prejudicial statements against the 28 April BERSIH 3.0 rally even before his appointment.
Furthermore, comments made by other ministries and government officials, e.g. by the Minister of Information, Rais Yatim, who was reported to have suggested that BERSIH 3.0 supporters who had “rioted, been rough and violent, [should be given] a copy of this book” (1Malaysia Moral guide). This is a direct insult to 250,000 Malaysian citizens and their family members and such insinuations have to cease.  This reported comment is also biased because he has said nothing about the police personnel who indulged in brutality against the public.
It is clear that the Home Minister, Hanif Omar and other ministers have all missed the point, that is, the Malaysian public wants a credible, independent and impartial inquiry on Bersih 3.0 rally. The rakyat demands to know the truth.
BERSIH 2.0 Steering Committee reiterates its position that justice must be seen to be done and will give its fullest cooperation to SUHAKAM in carrying out its investigation. The public inquiry, to be held by SUHAKAM, on police brutality will allow for questions and queries to be answered and hence allow for the truth to be heard.
Keluar Mengundi, Lawan Penipuan!
BERSIH 2.0 Steering Committee
Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections 2.0 (BERSIH 2.0)
The Steering Committee of BERSIH 2.0 comprises:
 Dato’ Ambiga Sreenevasan (Co-Chairperson), Datuk A. Samad Said (Co-Chairperson), Ahmad Shukri Abdul Razab, Andrew Ambrose, Andrew Khoo, Anne Lasimbang, Arul Prakkash, Arumugam K., Awang Abdillah, Dr Farouk Musa, Hishamuddin Rais, Liau Kok Fah, Maria Chin Abdullah, Matthew Vincent, Niloh Ason, Richard Y W Yeoh, Dr Subramaniam Pillay, Dato’ Dr Toh Kin Woon, Dr Wong Chin Huat, Dato’ Yeo Yang Poh and Zaid Kamaruddin.