Malaysia: Memorandum Against the Election Commission Chief

YouTube user Sophiemiller has uploaded a video of the confrontation and the eventual arrest of Malaysian opposition party activist Tian Chua. Chua is information chief of Parti Keadilan Rakyat. Chua was arrested when he was trying to enter the parliament to submit a memorandum.

The memorandum opposed the government plans to change the constitution to allow the current Election Commission chief to serve past his retirement age. The opposition parties are not against the increase in retirement age but they feel that the current Election Commission chief Abdul Rashid is biased toward the ruling party.

Khoo Kay Peng writes about the recent comments made by Abdul Rashid in support of the government.

Election Commission (EC) chairperson Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman's view on which ‘regime’ he regards as being capable of running the country speaks like someone who is very keen to glorify a particular regime. How can an election referee act in a fair and independent manner when his biasness is clear and explicit?

“A lot of people are anxious to determine the type of regime that is going to handle Malaysia in the coming years. They are always talking about regimes. I never talk about regimes. There is only one regime in this country that is capable of running (the country),” he said.

“People get angry with me whenever I say this (but) people don't seem tounderstand the critical scenario in the country. What is it that can (take) over from the present one given the political scenario we are in?” he asked.

No wonder the move to amend the constitution to allow Abdul Rashid to serve one more year is controversial and suspicious. Abdul Rashid, like everyone else, must respect the law and duly retire.

Going back to Chua's arrest, blogger M-Factor questions the method used by the police

Is the police right to arrest Tian Chua the way it showed on video clip? What has he done wrong to deserve the arrest like the way he did? I think police force is over stepping the line and started a war against peace and harmony.

From the video clip viewed, Tian Chua has done nothing, but sitting inside the car driven by his driver or friend, and he did nothing more than heading towards Parliment house. Is that deserve to be arrested? Is there any law prevented a politician entering parliment house?

The blogger at obscure-thoughts meanwhile suggests that Tian Chua wanted the arrest and the publicity that came with it.

Several other opposition notables were also arrested as seen by Malaysian parliamentarian Lim Kit Siang

I was eye-witness to the police arrest of Mustapha, Yap Swee Seng, Wong Chin Huat and Gayathry within the precincts of Parliament. In fact, I was accompanying Yap, Wong and Gayathry out of Parliament when the police abused its powers to effect the arrest within parliamentary precincts during lunch-break.

Lim Kit Siang points to another YouTube video that shows police detaining a former opposition MP (without a court order) outside the Malaysian parliament.

The detained people were later released by the police.

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