Circular No 153/2011
Dated 18 July 2011
On 25 June 2011, 31 Parti Sosialis Malaysia (“PSM”) activists were arrested near Kepala Batas while they were travelling by bus from Kedah to attend a BERSIH 2.0 (Coalition for Clean and Fair Elections) programme in Penang.
On 2 July, six of those activists were released, but immediately re–arrested under the Emergency (Public Order and Prevention of Crime) Ordinance 1969 (“EO”). The EO allows the police to detain a person for up to 60 days, at the end of which the Minister for Home Affairs has the power to issue the detainee with either a detention or restriction order for a period of two years.
The use of this archaic and repressive legislation means that the detainees are never charged in open court and given the opportunity to defend themselves in a full and fair hearing. The EO is therefore a preventive detention law that functions very much like the Internal Security Act 1960.
The six activists have now been incarcerated for 16 days under a law that is devoid of any proper regard and safeguards for human rights and is antithetical to the due process of the law. Legal proceedings and a public campaign are underway to secure their release.
To learn more about the EO and the arrest of the six activists, Bar Council invites you to attend a public forum entitled “Emergency Ordinance – The Other ISA”. The forum, jointly organised by Bar Council, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (“SUARAM”) and Gerakan Mansuhkan ISA (“GMI”), will take place as follows:
Date: 20 July 2011 (Wednesday)
Time: 8:30 pm
Bar Council Auditorium, Level 1, No 15 Leboh Pasar Besar, 50050 Kuala Lumpur
Christopher Leong, Vice–President, Malaysian Bar S Arutchelvan, Secretary–General, PSM Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh, Chairperson, GMI Edmund Bon, Member of the Malaysian Bar
Please note that a candlelight vigil will take place from 7:45 pm to 8:30 pm at Dataran Merdeka, on the same day.
For further information, kindly contact Sumitha Shaanthinni Kishna by telephone at 03–2050 2090 or by email at email@example.com.
Tony Woon Yeow Thong