Thousands call for Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak to quit

November 20, 2016


Thousands call for Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak to quit

By The Guardian

Image result for Bersih 5.0 Protesters in Kuala Lumpur

Protesters march in Kuala Lumpur just hours after activists and opposition leaders were arrested in a government crackdown

Thousands of anti-government protesters marched in Malaysia’s capital on Saturday demanding the resignation of the prime minister, Najib Razak, over his alleged involvement in a multibillion-dollar misappropriation scandal.

Clad in yellow shirts and unfazed by arrests of activists and opposition leaders just hours before the rally, protesters marched from various spots towards the heart of Kuala Lumpur amid tight security.

The mood among those gathered was festive, with drums and vuvuzelas heard along with speeches, songs and chants by participants calling for a clean Malaysia and people power.

The head of pro-democracy group BERSIH – the organisers of Saturday’s rally – was arrested on Friday, along with several other supporters of the demonstration, including opposition leaders and student activists. Police have said the BERSIH rally is illegal.

“We are not here to bring down the country. We love this country! We are not here to tear down the government, we’re here to strengthen it,” the BERSIH Deputy Chair, Shahrul Aman Shaari, told the crowds gathered at the National Mosque.

Another BERSIH leader Hishamuddin Rais was arrested on Saturday at the protest area, with the Police also issuing warnings to other participants. State news agency Bernama said about 7,000 policemen will be on duty near the protest area.

Image result for Fahmi Reza at Bersih 5.0

“Our country is being governed by clowns and crooks. So I’m here to protest against our Prime Minister,” said artist Fahmi Reza (pic above), holding a poster of a clown-faced Najib.

In a speech uploaded on his website on Friday, Najib said the protesters were “a tool of the opposition”.

“Their movement is deceitful. It is clear that these street protests are in fact the opposition disguised as an independent NGO working to unseat a democratically elected government,” said Najib, who is in Lima, Peru to attend the APEC summit.

Image result for Azalina Othman said

Azalina Othman Said, a Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, on Saturday said it was unlawful for any party to try to unseat a democratically elected government via street protests.

Fears of clashes between BERSIH and a pro-Najib group called the Red Shirts mounted this week after the latter threatened to target Bersih supporters.

The Red Shirts also rallied on Saturday, marching from the headquarters of the ruling United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) Party towards Dataran Merdeka, or Independence Square, where the BERSIH rally is expected to converge. The Red Shirts’ rally has also been declared illegal. Jamal Yunos, an UMNO member and leader of the Red Shirts, was arrested before the protests began.

Pro-government Red Shirts
Pro-government Red Shirts march to counter a protest organised by leading reformist group Bersih. Photograph: Mohd Rasfan/AFP/Getty Images

A six-week campaign by BERSIH ahead of the rally was marred by several violent confrontations with the Red Shirts, and anonymous death threats have been sent to the BERSIH chairwoman, Maria Chin Abdullah.

Jamal has warned of a repeat of racial riots in 1969 that killed hundreds in clashes between Malays and ethnic Chinese.

Ethnic Chinese and Indian minorities formed the bulk of a similar rally of more than 200,000 organised by BERSIH last year, after the Wall Street Journal reported that around $700m from state fund 1MDB was diverted into the personal bank account of the prime minister.

Najib ran into further trouble this year when lawsuits filed by the US Justice Department in July said over $3.5b was stolen from 1MDB, which was founded by Najib, and that some of those funds flowed into the accounts of “Malaysian Official 1”, whom US and Malaysian officials have identified as Najib.

Najib has taken steps that, critics say, aim to limit discussion of the scandal, such as sacking a deputy prime minister, replacing the attorney general, and suspending newspapers and blocking websites.

He retains significant support within UMNO and from the long-ruling Barisan Nasional coalition.

9 thoughts on “Thousands call for Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak to quit

  1. Lest we forget, there were about 30+ millions citizen of Malaysia and a few millions registered voters who will be called to make their choice come Pru14!
    So harassing the (whatever quality) of the present PM to resign NOW is an exercise of futility.
    If his intention was to resign due to the call by his detractors, he would have done it long ago, but he did not!
    So, we still need to wait until Pru14.

  2. Dear Abu

    Not futile. All part of the propaganda war and
    “consciousness raising”.

    If enough people lose their fear and overcome their apathy, no
    tyranny can stand.

  3. And Najib have the gall to say that Malaysians are fed up with Bersih. Ah Jib Gor is living in a world of denial. If he was to do a poll on just two choices i.e.
    1. those that like Najib to stay
    2. those that want Najib to leave
    He will be shocked to see the results. The question is, will he leave if the outcome shows tremendous numbers of Malaysian want him to leave?

  4. PRU14 is a foregone conclusion unless Hadi’s PAS can be marginalised or returned to Pakatan fold. It is the SINGLE biggest issue.

    Bersih proved Hadi’s PAS’s GE strategy is a FRAUD, they will lose the seats they gained with Pakatan and a few more. Hadi’s PAS political strategy is ill- intentioned towards Pakatan and it cannot be anything else but to help UMNO/ BN – Hadi’s PAS has already turned to the dark side and it’s already too late to try to turn them back.

    It is legitimate to ask of Malay Muslim, what great political religion that fails it’s people in not only in its hours of need but waste it’s best opportunity for change that may never come again?

    Just because going against Hadi’s PAS is a tall order attempt at most difficult dysfunctionality, does not mean it should not be done. The Malay Muslim chose to mix politics and their religion because it’s a powerful force harnessed. Now it gone wrong, their answer is to avoid the problem?

    Hadi’s PAS is a political party, they are not Islam. Like UMNO, they are also just a political party that can go all wrong and has.

  5. Malaya,
    Najib is right because Najib knew that he can rein in the naive melayus in the kampung. Plus there are many udangs especially one guy from KTEMOC who will make the views even murkier.
    Watch Hypernormalisation by Adam Curtis. If Trump can win, with the love of KTEMOC, Najib will rule forever. Beware!

  6. BigJoe,
    You will never know. Hadi is learning his rope from Trump. GE14 would be Najib’s victory. That marks the end of Malaysia and Hisham Rais.

    Support Trump so much la! Later it will bite you…….hahahahahaha

  7. Orang Malaya,

    MO1 already knows his approval rating among the Malaysian citizens. He has access to Special Branch and military intelligence reports.
    He’s just pretending that he has a lot of political support.

    I bet that even among those who “support” him because of $$$dedak$$, a lot view him with contempt and laugh at him behind his back.
    Truly a naked emperor devoid of any clothes.

  8. I wonder if anyone realised that Najib had executed his counter move and had just launched Ops Lalang 2? The Red shirts were deployed and Jamal was used as a pretext to round up all the leaders of Bersih 5 reminiscent of Ops Lalang, the way Umno Youth and Najib were used.
    Forget about GE 14. Despite of the Bersih 5 protest, the Malaysian Election Commission is not about to clean up the electoral process to ensure a clean and fair election. If there is an important lesson to be learnt from the recent US Presidential election – winning the popular votes does not win the election.
    Depending on the outcome of GE14, Malaysians may be left with 2 courses of action, to go either the Rizal way or the Corazon Aquino way.

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