- Peaceful Asembly Act protects rights of all
- Eroded moral values – children not to blame
- Pakatan's seats allocation conundrum
- Listen! Listen! Listen! ; MCA, MIC and Gerakan parliamentarians
Posted: 17 Jun 2013 03:41 PM PDT
FMT LETTER: From Thomas Samuel, via e-mail
We are all aware that excess is more often not a choice in dealing with creating unity and providing a fair platform for communities to live, work and stay together in a multi-racial country like ours. This is essentially the spirit in which the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012 was presented and gazetted in parliament on Feb 9, 2012.
If we care to read the Act which is available on the internet, you will come to realise that it has more benefits than otherwise. It is an Act that tries to protect the interest of all Malaysians and at the same time provide them a legal avenue to assemble and voice their opinion and/or objection on any matter of interest that they believe in.
It is a fair and responsible Act that in no way deprives anybody of their 'rights'. Anybody intending to assemble in public and voice their objection or opinion can do so subject to restrictions deemed necessary in the interest of security or public order, including the protection of the rights and freedoms of other persons.
Why many of us fail to see the rational on the refusal by the authorities to approve certain assemblies is simply because we are blinded to the rights and freedoms of others who are NOT involved in that particular assembly. The taxi driver, the restaurant owners, the family which is out for a peaceful traffic free shopping, motorist who will be affected by traffic jams and many others who will in one way or another be affected by these assemblies. The authorities have to do a holistic evaluation and ensure minimum disruption to the rights and freedoms of those not involved in the assemblies as well. This is where the conflict occurs!
It is impossible to have an assembly with no disruption to the normal pace of life at any chosen venue. An enclosed or private area like a stadium will be ideal to minimise the disruption to others. Such places also provide the authorities better management of security and safety of the participants. In essence, the Act encourages healthy participation and is also concerned about the safety of the participant's as well non participants.
Why some organisers' insist on having the assemblies at common, high traffic open areas baffles me! Open areas are surely not safe and the chances of chaos and violence are higher at such venues. If the sole intention of the organiser is to put forth their objections or views and show the support they have, then a much safer environment may achieve the same results with reduced possibility of things going wrong. So what is the intention of organisers' who insist of having gatherings in open areas or public roads?
The Act also prohibits children below the age of 15 to participate at such gatherings. However, it is so common to see parents bringing their children below the age of 15 for such events. The Act is there to protect the children but the organisers' are not bothered to enforce these rules. If things go out of hand and the children become victims, fingers will squarely be pointed to the authorities. Again, what is the intention of the organisers' in closing a blind eye to the Act by allowing children to be part of these gatherings?
One of the articles in the Act reads, "The officer in charge of the police district shall take into account all the concerns and objections received for the purpose of imposing restrictions and conditions of any assembly. And inform the organisers of any restrictions and conditions for a peaceful assembly within five days of receipt of the same." Again we see that the spirit of the Act is to encourage peaceful assembly with concerns of all taken into account.
To ensure the rights and freedoms of all involved and affected by the assembly, the authorities may have to provide additional guidelines and conditions that may not be acceptable to the organiser. What the organisers' fail to understand is that these guidelines and conditions are put in place to manage everybody's expectations. The organisers' have to realise that there are as many people who support their cause as there are those who oppose them. The authorities have to maintain a balance so nobody feels discriminated.
When organisers' of such gatherings protest the additional conditions imposed, it just goes to show that they are inconsiderate to other peoples' views. What does this say of such organisers?
Malaysia is a peaceful country and we surely wish it to be the same or better for our children and the generations to come. We should embrace the spirit of the Act and create less animosity and anger among Malaysians. Moderation, respect and compromise are key elements to ensure we continue to enjoy the peace and unity of our beloved country. Let not some idealistic leader or leaders who are self-centred destroy the unity of this country.
Posted: 17 Jun 2013 12:45 PM PDT
Children are exposed to a lot of negative inputs and need more vigilance on the part of the adults responsible for their upbringing and education, but the opposite is happening.
Ravinder Singh, FMT
If you do not teach a child to know right from wrong from a very young age, the child will absorb whatever is around him as he simply does not know right from wrong. He does not have a built-in filtration system that will keep the bad out and allow only the good to pass through and be absorbed. Repeatedly practicing what he has picked up, be it language or physical behaviour, internalizes it in him. Once internalised, it is very difficult to change. So the bad must be recognised by the adults as soon as the child starts showing it and removed immediately, even if need be by a smack or two. The adults who should do this are the parents and teachers.
Posted: 17 Jun 2013 12:18 PM PDT
Forming a single unit of Pakatan campaign managers is crucial for the pact to remedy what had happened prior to GE13 on matters of seat allocations.
Kuo Yong Kooi
What has clearly emanate through before GE-13 to a political observer was that the component parties of Pakatan Rakyat were squabbling over their "territorial seats". Once the seats were allocated to that particular component party, the task of allocating the right candidates for the squabbled seats were then given to their own party boss(es).
Kuo Yong Kooi
Posted: 17 Jun 2013 12:16 PM PDT
Reference : This may be your last chance to stay relevant.
Your political parties are now gasping for some extra oxygen and are lying on the death bed. All dying souls have to go through the process of flashes of images of our past experiences in this life. Our conscience will come and haunt us, we will be asking many questions; "Have I lived a good life?". "Why there are so many people abandoning me in my hour of need?" or "What have I done to deserve this?"
If I were in your shoes, I will act according to my conscience to redeem myself so that I can die a good death with a clear conscience. What is the best thing that I can do now to revive my fortunes? Is there anything that I can do for the national interests, instead of personal interest?.
Yes MCA, MIC and Gerakan parliamentarians this is probably your last big chance to stay relevant. When the parliament convenes, you can cross the floor of our Parliament and support or help the "rebel" East Malaysians block in tabling a motion of no confidence on the current Prime Minister Najib Razak. If there is no motion of no confidence tabled, initiate one and you might be a hero. This is the only way to teach the Najib administration to put a lid on UMNO's mouthpiece Utusan Malaysia and Perkasa's Ibrahim Ali, Mahathir Mohammad and Zul Nordin. Their racial slurs have gone too far and for too long.
The Najib administration will start to take you seriously if you decide to vote according to your conscience on bills tabled on the parliament. They will have to consult you and will start to give you some respect.
You might be able to change your fortunes if you are willing to cross the floor and support the opposition on some matters. The community you represent will be happy to see that you've finally turned over a new leaf. They might even come back to vote for you in the next general election.
Central committee MCA member Datuk Seri Ong Ka Chuan was quoted to have said "Since we are aiming to change and win back the support of the younger generation, we should elect younger party leaders who can better connect with them".
Mr Ong is barking at the wrong tree. Getting support back from the younger generation by electing younger party leaders does not necessarily give new life to MCA. If you behave the same way as before you might as well consult a Taoist priest to set a funeral date for MCA.
Doing the right thing for the national interest is one possible way to salvage the party from oblivion.
MCA Young Professional bureau chief Datuk Chua Tee Yong has been quoted, "I urge all the NGOs and parties to stop making accusations and snide remarks. All of us should work together with the Government in its efforts to enhance nation-building and reconciliation plans. Education should not be used as a weapon for one's political interests."
You guys with big job titles have always been saying the right thing ever since I was old enough to read newspapers. Listen! Listen! Listen!.....my head has gone bald now, when are you going to do the right thing for the national interest? Najib Razak has been saying the right thing on national reconciliation and one Malaysia for the last four years. Has he done anything on national reconciliation yet?
Make some gutsy moves in the parliament. If after the motion of no confidence on Najib Razak sails through, support the motion to elect Tengku Razaleigh as the Prime Minister. Listen! Listen! Listen! that is the definition of "doing" the right thing for the national interest.
Continue to give unconditional support to your political master UMNO will hasten your death. That was the main reason why you are near your death bed in the first place. Giving conditional support might be a possible avenue for you to turn the situation around.
You are to head towards a possible electoral annihilation anyway come GE14. You might as well leave with a bang or would you prefer to leave where people come out to celebrate your passing?
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