Why should police be allowed in Sarawak redelineation inquries when lawyers, media and other voters are barred?

MEDIA STATEMENT (9 March 2015)

 

The Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections (BERSIH 2.0) is shocked that Special Branch police had sat in at the inquiry held by the Election Commission (EC) on its proposed electoral boundary for Miri.

According to Piasau assembly representative Alan Ling, he had recognised the four plainclothed police sitting behind the EC officials when he was presenting his objections last Thursday. Chairing the panel, the EC chairperson himself was taken aback when told of their identities, but decided that they could stay anyway.

BERSIH 2.0 is outraged by the EC chairperson’s decision, especially when taking into account the fact that stakeholders with legitimate interest in the process, such as lawyers, the media and members of the public, are barred from attending the inquiries.

Lawyers can help clarify any legal points that may be raised, the media can make the process transparent and educational for the public, and members of the public should be alerted on how a solution to other constituencies might affect theirs.

What legitimate stake does the Special Branch have in the process?

The fact that the police were in plainclothes showed that they intended to disguise their identity, which points to a sinister motive on their part.

The public should not stand for it if the EC were to allow plainclothed police again at the next round of redelineation held for Sabah and peninsular Malaysia.

BERSIH 2.0 reiterates our call to make the inquiries truly public and allow all legitimate stakeholders to be present.

 

Issued by,

The Steering Committee of BERSIH 2.0, which comprises –

Chairperson: Maria Chin Abdullah; Deputy Chairperson: Sarajun Hoda Abdul Hassan; Treasurer: Masjaliza Hamzah; national representatives: Assoc. Prof. Dr Abdul Halim bin Yusof, Farhana binti Abdul Halim, Fadiah Nadwa Fikri and New Sin Yew; vice-chairpersons: Jannie Lasimbang (Sabah), Ahmad b. Awang Ali (Sarawak), Abd Halim b. Wan Ismail (East Peninsula), Thomas Fann (South Peninsula), Simon Lee Ying Wai (Central Peninsula) and Dato’ Dr Toh Kin Woon (North Peninsula).

 

KENYATAAN MEDIA (9 Mac 2015)

Mengapa polis dibenarkan dalam siasatan persempadanan semula Sarawak manakala peguam, media dan pengundi lain dihalang?

 

Gabungan Pilihan Raya Bersih dan Adil (BERSIH 2.0) terkejut apabila mengetahui bahawa anggota Polis Cawangan Khas telah hadir dalam siasatan yang diadakan oleh Suruhanjaya Pilihan Raya (SPR) tentang sempadan kawasan pilihan raya yang dicadangkan untuk Miri.

Menurut ADUN Piasau Alan Ling, apabila beliau membentangkan bantahannya Khamis lepas, beliau sedar empat orang berbaju preman yang duduk di belakan pegawai SPR itu adalah anggota polis. Pengerusi SPR sendiri terkejut apabila diberitahu identiti mereka, tetapi kemudiannya memutuskan bahawa mereka boleh menghadiri siasatan tersebut. 

BERSIH 2.0 mengecam keputusan Pengerusi SPR, terutamanya apabila diambil kira hakikat bahawa pihak-pihak berkepentingan, seperti peguam, media dan orang ramai, dilarang daripada menghadiri pertanyaan.

Ketiga-tiga kumpulan ini mempunyai kepentingan sah dalam proses ini: peguam boleh menjelaskan sebarang perkara yang mungkin dibangkitkan berkaitan dengan undang-undang, media boleh membantu menjadikan proses ini telus di samping mendidik orang ramai tentangnya, dan orang ramai perlu dimaklumkan tentang perubahan kepada kawasan lain yang mungkin memberi kesan kepada kawasan mereka.

Apa peranan dan minat Polis Cawangan Khas mempunyai dalam proses ini?

Hakikat bahawa polis hadir dalam pakaian biasa menunjukkan bahawa mereka bertujuan untuk menyembunyikan identiti mereka, yang menunjukkan mereka berniat buruk.

Orang ramai tidak boleh melepaskan SPR sekiranya mereka membenarkan polis berbaju preman hadir pada sesi siasatan persempadanan semula yang akan diadakan di Sabah dan Semenanjung Malaysia.

BERSIH 2.0 mengulangi panggilan kami untuk membuka sesi siasatan kepada semua dan membolehkan pihak berkepentingan yang sah untuk hadir.

 

Dikeluarkan oleh, 

Jawatankuasa Pemandu BERSIH 2.0, yang terdiri daripada –

Pengerusi: Maria Chin Abdullah; Timbalan Pengerusi: Sarajun Hoda Abdul Hassan; Bendahari: Masjaliza Hamzah; wakil kebangsaan: Prof Madya Dr Abdul Halim bin Yusof, Farhana binti Abdul Halim, Fadiah Nadwa Fikri dan New Sin Yew; naib pengerusi: Jannie Lasimbang (Sabah), Ahmad b. Awang Ali (Sarawak), Abd Halim b. Wan Ismail (Semenanjung Timur), Thomas Fann (Semenanjung Selatan), Simon Lee Ying Wai (Semenanjung Tengah) dan Dato’ Dr Toh Kin Woon (Semenanjung Utara).