Hisham lying over parties wanting deaths at Bersih, says Kit Siang
KUALA LUMPUR, May 12 — Lim Kit Siang accused Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein of “spreading lies” after the home minister alleged that some parties wanted serious injuries and deaths to occur at the April 28 Bersih rally.
The DAP parliamentary leader pointed out that the Umno vice president had dismissed on April 19 the planned sit-in for free and fair elections, saying it was not a security threat and had little traction with the public.
“I urge Hishammuddin to stop spreading lies and falsehoods about Bersih 3.0 as his allegation that some parties wanted serious injuries and deaths is most wild, irresponsible and deplorable.
“If Hishamuddin received ‘intelligence’ that there were ‘some parties’ who wanted serious injuries and deaths to occur at Bersih 3.0, he was then seriously remiss and negligent in his duties as home minister when he publicly declared that Bersih 3.0 rally posed no ‘security threat’,” the Ipoh Timor MP said.
Hishammuddin told students earlier today that his biggest fear ahead of the April 28 rally for free and fair elections was the possibility of serious injuries and fatalities. “I was relieved there were none. But there were some parties who wanted that to happen,” he said over lunch at Sunway Hotel here.
Lim (picture) also said in a press statement that Datuk Seri Najib Razak must also be asked if he had received ‘intelligence’ to back the prime minister’s claim that Bersih 3.0 was an attempted coup d’etat to topple the government.
“Or was the ‘intelligence’ about an attempted coup to topple the government, like Hishammudin’s latest allegation, purely political in nature, concocted after April 28 to enable the Barisan Nasional to demonise the Bersih 3.0 organisers and protestors?” he said.
He added that Putrajaya’s probe into violence during the Bersih rally must be in the form of a royal commission of inquiry instead of the proposed panel headed by Tun Hanif Omar as the former police chief had disqualified himself by making anti-Bersih statements.
The April 28 rally, which saw tens of thousands gather at six different locations before heading to Dataran Merdeka, was peaceful until about 2.30pm when Bersih chief Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan asked the crowd to disperse. But her call was not heard by most of the crowd who persisted around the historic square which the court had already barred to the public over the weekend.
Just before 3pm, some protestors breached the barricade surrounding the landmark, leading police to disperse the crowd with tear gas and water cannons.
Police then continued to pursue the rally-goers down several streets amid chaotic scenes which saw violence from both sides over the next four hours.
Several dozen demonstrators have claimed that they were assaulted by groups of over 10 policemen at a time and visual evidence appears to back their claim but police also point to violence from rally-goers who also attacked a police car.
The police car then crashed into a building before some protestors flipped it on its side.