MEDIA STATEMENT (14 AUGUST 2017): Political Violence Must End

BERSIH 2.0 condemns the despicable political violence that took place at the forum on “Nothing to Hide 2”. There must be an end to impunity on such violence, which is becoming an alarming trend in our political scene.
Now is the time for political leadership to end this violence. The deafening silence by the Cabinet is unacceptable. The Home Ministry must set the moral standard as this violence may set the tone for the forthcoming 14th General Election.
The police must conduct full investigation against the perpetrators and bring them to justice, without fear or favour.
Increasingly the use of gangsters and political violence are the “SOP” in any events deemed to be critical of the authorities, in particular UMNO and Prime Minister Najib Razak.
Such hooliganism and political violence were used at BERSIH 5 Convoy and rallies in 2016 which resulted in BERSIH supporters being beaten, harassed and threatened. Activists have received death threats, cartoon exhibitions by Zunar are frequently targeted and ceramahs by politicians have been disrupted.
This is now being repeated in a forum, where the main aim was to have an open debate between former Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad and Prime Minister Najib Razak, to discuss critical national issues such as corruption, 1MDB and misuse of powers.
It is crucial for a functioning democracy for the people to be able to participate in politics without fear.
BERSIH 2.0 strongly urges all Malaysians to reject political violence. Register to vote and during the coming election demand peace, civility and adherence to the rule of law.
Issued by:-
The BERSIH 2.0 Steering Committee