Tuesday 4 September 2012

Cops 'didn't provide security' at S'gor Merdeka bash

Apart from pulling out of the march-past for the National Day celebrations in Selangor, the police did not provide security or crowd and traffic control, state exco member Dr Xavier Jeyakumar said.

This was in spite of arrangements having been made in advance by the state secretary and event chairperson Khusrin Munawi.

NONE"We were surprised that there was not a single uniformed police personnel on duty (on the night of Aug 30),” Xavier (left) told reporters today.

"We had to use enforcement officers from town councils to control the (crowd) and traffic.”

He said that this, and the decision by the police and Malaysian armed forces to pull out of the march-past had "saddened" the state, as arrangements had been made to accommodate them. 

"We spent thousands for new uniforms, lodging, etc," he lamented. 

Selangor police chief Tun Hisan Tun Hamzah's excuse that police had not participated in the march-past due to traffic duties was "lame", he said. 

Tun Hisan had last Sunday denied snubbing the event, adding that assistance was provided to "keep peace and regulate traffic".

Malaysiakini had spotted traffic police regulating traffic during the Merdeka eve celebration, but crowd control was handled by local council staff. 

Selangor executive councillor Teresa Kok earlier claimed that police and the armed forces had pulled out of the march-past at the last minute as they were unhappy that PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim was given a slot to speak. 

Rafizi blows his top

On a related matter, PKR director of strategy Rafizi Ramli slammed media attention on what he said was "childish" issues, in order to attack Anwar and Pakatan Rakyat. 

Interjecting when Xavier was asked about the claim that Anwar had not raised his hand during the reading of the Rukunegara that night, Rafizi shot back that there was nothing unpatriotic about it. 

NONE"This country is getting silly. When I was in school in Terengganu we read the Rukunegara every Monday and we didn't raise our hands for it. 

"It's the Rukunegara. Not Rukun Islam or Rukun Iman (the basic pillars of Islam or faith). Your faith won't be tarnished if you don't raise your hand for the Rukunegara," he said. 

The usually cool-headed politician also countered that it is far more "unpatriotic" to "malign the judiciary and sack judges" than it is to not raise one's hand for the Rukunegara. 

"We are becoming the laughing stock of the world - RM50 billion worth of land bank could be transferred to a crony...the question is not on whether hands were raised or not," he lambasted.

Xavier, meanwhile, said he did not see if Anwar had raised his hand or not, and that it is up to the latter to answer that question. 

"I'm sure he has an answer for that," he said, of the issue highlighted on TV3's ‘Buletin Utama’ last night. 

NONEXavier also defended the state's decision to invite Anwar to speak that night, adding that Selangor had invited PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang and DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang to attend but both had prior engagements. 

"Anwar is an elected MP and and the Opposition Leader in Parliament. Constitutionally, he is allowed to attend on invitation of the state. 

"It is legal and right...(and) Pakatan was democratically chosen by the rakyat and has the right to invite any personality. There is no (issue).” 

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