(Petaling Jaya, Thursday): I call the Police to be scrupulously professional dealing with the Mammoth Anti-Toll Protest Public Rally planned by the Coalition Against Toll (CAT) at Bukit Jalil Stadium on February 26 and it should not await political directives or signals from the powers-that-be.
Cheras police chief assistant commissioner Ali Hanafiah, in confirming the application for a police permit for the mammoth Anti-Toll Protest Public Rally, said the police has to study various aspects of security before issuing a permit for the CAT public rally at Bukit Jalil Stadium on February 26.
The CAT will give the police the fullest co-operation in the maintenance of peace and order at the public rally at Bukit Jalil Stadium and I call on the police to co-operate with CAT to prove to the world that Malaysia is not a police state and that constitutional rights enshrined in the Federal Constitution about freedom of speech and assembly are not empty words.
The CAT will organise state-wide CAT liaison committees to organise the people from all over the country to attend the Mammoth Anti-Toll Protest Public Rally at Bukit Jalil Stadium on February 26 to show the strength and power of popular opposition to unfair highway privatisation concessions and unfair highway tolls.
The nation-wide toll plazas protests in the next two Sundays as well as the anti-toll public rally will also be occasions for the people to express their disgust at highway concession companies which refuse to accept the most basic principle of good corporate governance - accountability and transparency.
The North-South Expressway concessionaire, PLUS, is acting likely a typical rentier and is trying to resort to the traditional "divide and rule" tactic as well as choosing and picking as to which organisations it is prepared to show some courtesy and accountability.
It has been reported that PLUS would be meeting a MBM - Fomca -MTUC-CUEPACS delegation tomorrow morning to discuss the toll issue.
This is welcome news although I cannot understand why PLUS is so shy and reluctant to meet CAT although we have asked for such a meeting two weeks ago.
Is this PLUSí way of "divide and rule" and choosing and picking more comfortable people to meet with in order to get some good public relations points?