Rally-goers challenged the law, says police

FAZRIK KAMARUDIN

KUALA LUMPUR: The attempt made by rally-goers outside the Sogo Shopping Centre, here, tonight, to march to the Dang Wangi district police headquarters was considered as trying to challenge the law.

Dang Wangi district police chief Asst Comm Shaharudin Abdullah said this led to cops stopping the rally-goers to avoid them from disrupting the peace.

"The organiser did not give a notice or apply for a permit, the rally can be considered illegal.

"However, my officers had discussed earlier, we agreed to allow them to gather and have their speeches for an hour, but not to march.


Pic by STR/OWEE AH CHUN

"We will open an investigation paper under the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 on what happened tonight and will wait for further instructions from the Deputy Prosecutor," Shaharudin told reporters tonight.

The rally outside the Sogo Shopping Complex was organised by Pemantau Malaysia Baharu (PMB) and it was called the "Funeral Ceremony of the Attorney-General's Institution.

PMB president Datuk Lokman Noor Adam meanwhile claimed that the chaos that took place tonight happened because the police stopped them from marching.


The rally outside the Sogo Shopping Complex was organised by Pemantau Malaysia Baharu (PMB) and it was called the "Funeral Ceremony of the Attorney-General's Institution. Pic by STR/OWEE AH CHUN

"Usually in stopping (rally-goers), police will allow a few people to head to the police station. For tonight, the reason we wanted to march to the Dang Wangi district police headquarters was because we wanted to get away from the buskers.

"But that did not happen, if that procedure was adhered to, there would have been no chaos or scuffle.

"Unfortunately, the district police chief's side started the discussion by pointing fingers and talking in raised voices, so it became difficult for me to control my feelings as well as that of the group," he said.


Pic by STR/OWEE AH CHUN

It was chaotic at the rally earlier when Lokman became unhappy with a group of buskers performing in the same area.

Lokman claimed that the speakers used by the buskers were turned up on purpose to drown out the speeches by the rally organiser.

Lokman then asked police to direct the musicians to stop their performance or the rally-goers would start to march.

Attempt by the group of some 50 people was then stopped by Shaharudin.


The attempt made by rally-goers outside the Sogo Shopping Centre, here, tonight, to march to the Dang Wangi district police headquarters was considered as trying to challenge the law. Pic by STR/OWEE AH CHUN.

This led to more chaos to a point the Light Strike Force (LSF) had to be deployed to the scene.

The situation calmed down as police managed to control the situation and asked for the rally to wrap up as soon as possible. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd