Wednesday, July 6, 2011

PR backs Bersih’s Merdeka Stadium plan, expects 300,000

July 06, 2011
(L-R) Azmin Ali, Mohamad Sabu, Anwar Ibrahim and Lim Kit Siang speak to the media after a PR Leadership Council meeting today. — Picture by Melissa Chi

KUALA LUMPUR, July 6 — Pakatan Rakyat (PR) announced today that they supported Bersih 2.0’s proposal to have the rally in Merdeka Stadium on July 9, although the request to use the stadium has yet to be approved.

“So Pakatan Rakyat supports Bersih to hold their rally in Stadium Merdeka although in the latest report, the prime minister, especially the home minister, took a turn and had purposely given all kinds of excuses not to allow the use of the stadium,” Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim told reporters here after a PR Leadership Council meeting.

While authorities are still vilifying Bersih as an outlawed organisation, Stadium Merdeka officials are also snubbing their request to use the stadium this Saturday, despite being booked for a rock concert earlier.

Anwar said today that the authorities should respect the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin, who met Bersih leaders yesterday, and ensure that it can hold its rally in a stadium as suggested by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

A Stadium Merdeka official told state news agency Bernama that there was no official decision to allow Bersih to book the stadium, which it said came with conditions to prevent vandalism. He also said that they are still waiting for a Cabinet decision.

The Bersih movement said earlier today it chose Stadium Merdeka to reflect the “scale and centrality” of their issue calling for free and fair elections.

Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein insisted earlier today that Bersih is still outlawed, saying that neither an audience with the King nor the relocation of the July 9 rally to a stadium could make the electoral reform movement legal.


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