KUALA LUMPUR: A protest by DAP supporters outside the Taman Desa community centre yesterday turned ugly when the demonstrators were confronted by angry attendees of a wedding ceremony taking place at the centre.
The banner-brandishing protestors, led by Seputeh MP Teresa Kok, were holding a press conference across the street from the community centre. They were demonstrating against plans to develop a high-rise apartment block on the site, instead of a community centre.
However, the protest drew the ire of members of the wedding congregation, who were bothered by the group’s presence.
The argument began when a man charged towards those gathered outside and shouted: “Respect us! Go have your press conference elsewhere! How would you feel if people gathered outside your house?”
About 20 minutes later, things cooled down and the protesters agreed to disperse.
The encounter was caught on video, which was uploaded to several social media platforms and has since gone viral.
In the two-minute-34-second clip, a woman is seen arguing with the protesters, claiming that they were spoiling her relative’s wedding.
The woman, who wore a beanie, urged the group to disperse and hold their protest on another day.
One of the protesters replied that they were not disrupting the wedding.
The video also shows a woman, thought to be the mother of the bride, saying that she was uncomfortable with the protest across the street and that it was scaring the wedding guests.
“We are uncomfortable and we feel like this (protest) is disrupting our ceremony,” she said.
A wedding guest, Shahril Kamalludin, 40, later lodged a police report against Kok and the protesters.
When contacted, Shahril said he, along with several other guests, had requested that Kok and the protesters leave as a show of respect to the wedding.
“The protesters refused to leave, which led to an argument. I am lodging this report to ask the police to investigate Kok and her supporters who have disrupted the wedding ceremony with their demonstration, without any (permit) from the authorities,” he said.