Tenaganita condemns the detention of leaders of KeADILan under the ISA.  We demand the immediate release of the seven detained under this draconian law as it violates fundamental rights of persons and our Malaysian constitution.


The organization is shocked at the ridiculous statement made by Norian Mai, the Inspector General of Police.  The statement accuses the seven leaders as being involved in attempts to get explosives, including grenade launchers and bombs and trying to get the support of ‘silat’ leaders and some members of the armed forces. This indeed only reflects how unprofessional and irresponsible the police force has become.


All reformasi assemblies have been peaceful.  The rakyat, especially those who have been present and have seen with their own eyes will vouch that the assemblies have been peaceful.  But such assemblies have only gone out of hand when the police have used force and brutality  as well as water canons.  This became clear when Suhakam (the Human Rights Commission) conducted hearings to the Kesas Highway gathering held recently.  The Inspector General of Police has to be corrected and reminded that it is in fact police brutality and not the peaceful assembly of the rakyat that is the problem.  In fact, the agent provocateurs were used  to discredit the reformasi movement.


The time is long overdue for the police force to take a deep hard look at themselves so that they become professional in carrying out their duties.  And to begin with the IGP has to set his records correct.  The police cannot be allowed to concoct far-fetched accusations in order to detain people without trial.  Let us remind the police force that they exist to protect the rights of people and ensure peace exists in our society in a professional way by respecting fundamental rights.


The handing over of the Memorandum Rakyat to SUHAKAM is a very simple democratic way of entering into a dialogue with the Human Rights Commission to ensure people’s rights are upheld and promoted.  SUHAKAM, in its response has accepted the appointment, time and date to receive the Memorandum.  Why is Norain Mai and the Home Ministry so jittery and overly sensitive about this Memorandum of the Rakyat?  In fact a clean, honest and transparent government will not be worried over such a simple democratic action.  After all SUHAKAM was formed by this government to protect and promote rights of people.  It is a mechanism that will advise the government.  The police by calling on the rakyat not to come forward for the handing over of the Memorandum is in  fact contradicting the objectives of the  Human Rights Commission and thus Norain Mai is insulting SUHAKAM.


Norain Mai should now apologise to SUHAKAM, the Human Rights Commission, retract his statement and warning to the rakyat on their presence at the handing over of the Memorandum .


Tenaganita congratulates SUHAKAM for their firm stand in asking for the release of those detained under the ISA and appreciates their efforts in seeking access to the detainees .  The government must respect the call made by SUHAKAM to release all detained, if it wants to show its sincerity in protecting human rights.




Irene Fernandez