11 November 2007


Memandangkan arena politik kepimpinan negara sedang mengalami suatu krisis yang tidak diakui secara rasmi oleh pihak status quo, maka Atok terpanggil untuk mengajak seorang anak cucu blogger untuk mendedahkan manifestasi daripada krisis kepimpinan yang sedang melanda negara itu.

Rakan cucu blogger yang menggelarkan dirinya Charlie's Tango (www.civilian.wordpress.com) ini telah dengan beraninya menjadi sebagai roving on-site reporter pada perhimpunan BERSIH di Dataran Merdeka dan Istana Negara, Kuala Lumpur semalam (Nov 10 2007)

Berikut adalah hasil pengamatan beliau yang tajam:

Eventhough the organiser of today's rally for electoral reform (Bersih) have been warned again and again by the authorities, they still decided to go ahead with it today, creating one of the biggest rally since 1998. And it was a success, they claimed.

One yellow group (headed by opposition party leaders) who had earlier grouped at Masjid Negara apparently did not wait for the others to rendezvous at Dataran Merdeka. Instead, they marched head on to Istana Negara and handed over their memoranda to palace officials. It was a plan B, said the organiser.

I overheard one Shaw Brothers head reporting to the Dang Wangi OCPD that they had tried to arrest Sivarasa Rasiah and Dr Hatta Ramli, who was with the rest of the opposition leaders (Istana bound) but could not make it.

These organisers are the main target, not just some people who think it is fun to taunt riot police with assault-gear.

ACP Zulkarnain Abdul Rahman said they had earlier grouped at seven different locations in the city: Masjid Negara, Masjid India, Kampung Baru, Masjid Jamek, Central Market, as well as some LRT stations.

It was described by demonstrasi pundits at Malaysiakini as a hoodwinking, a clever kind of besting the police in a cat-n-mouse game. But what concerns me are none-the-wiser civilians who did not even know that they were at the 'wrong place at the wrong time'.

And here is the catch: The organiser wanted the public to join their cause, but innocent bystanders were not only forced to be drenched by the rain (because some kedais denied their premises to be used as shelter, fearing the worst), but also funny water jets and tear gas by the FRU.

Most affected are among the groups at Jalan Tun Perak, Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman, and Jalan Raja Laut.

At one point, a group of about 50 people were cornered when they still pressed on even after they received shots after shots of tear-gas and funny-looking water spray.

In police terms, this is called "second phase of dispersal" (tindakan kedua penyuraian).

"We give them orders to disperse. If they are still defiant, then we will deploy the tear-gas and the water cannons. After that we start arresting people," said Zulkarnain.While one group move in, another was seen trying to find another way in through TAR, and then through Raja Laut.

I counted 29 males, and 1 female were apprehended there.The female in tudung labuh had talked to a few media worker, with some video cameras were trained at her.Then I heard "berlaku PC! Berlaku PC!" (press conference) among the Brothers. They then took her away to a waiting Black Maria in front of Dataran Merdeka, where security is the tightest.

I could see that most from the demonstrators at Tun Perak, Raja Laut and TAR are from the Pas squad. Most donned yellow, but quite a number of them wear maroon, with matching beret with a certain insignia. I dont have photos, sorry. Just observed and took notes.

Former Bukit Bintang MP Wee Choo Keong was there too behind police lines, where most media people stood about, looking like they matter. At one point, Wee was asked to leave when he started complaining to some police people.

Total number of arrest stood at 245. The IGP Tan Sri Musa Hassan said they were soon released after some tagging.

What irked me the most is that the police couldnt give the total number of people who had gathered at those locations, when the situation was tense from 2pm to 4pm. Only later it was summed up to 10,000, while the organiser boasted the number to be 30,000.

Three units of FRU were also deployed to Taman Titiwangsa, I heard. The PM attended a function there today. It was also reported that many Pas supporters had gathered at their party headquarters in Taman Melewar. Some post rally celebrations, perhaps. Will there be more arrests?

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