Election is a civil means to allow power contests to take place in a democratic society. Yet the existence of laws which restrict freedom of speech, assembly etc is making the contest less than `civil’. The latest spades of ISA arrests shows that such unfair laws will unevitably be abused by those holding the power for personal power preservation purpose. Fairness in competition for the people’s `hearts and minds’ become a first casulty. The consequence: those who are less than capable and popular will continue to hold power and run rough shot over the population. They become a drag to the society. By popular will they should be got rid of by the people in the most expeditious way.
At the time of reporting the latest 3 ISA detainees are: Raja Petra, a popular anti-Badawi blogger; Tan Hoon Cheng, SIn Chew’s senior reporter who first reveal Ahmad Ismail’s racial remarks at Permatang Pauh by-election campaign; and Teresa Kok, MP for Seputih, who was accused falsely of pressuring a mosque to turn down the volume of its Azan broadcast. Statement by Syed Hamid Albar that Tan may be released earlier today may be unreliable as she has been sent to Bukit Aman since morning, after being allowed to meet her parents briefly.
Are the people at the mercy of these BN politicians? The people who want free and fair conduct of the government will need to voice out clearly that this is NOT what they allow for their (people’s) servants.
September 13, 2008 14:09 PM
Sin Chew Journalist Sent To Bukit Aman
–>KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 13 (Bernama) — Sin Chew Daily journalist Tan Hoon Cheng who was picked up by police at her house in Bukit Mertajam under the Internal Security Act (ISA) last night, has been sent to Bukit Aman Police Headquarters.
Penang Chief Police Officer Datuk Ayub Yaakob told Bernama: “She was brought to Bukit Aman after being allowed to meet her parents at Penang Contingent Police Headquarters at 8.30am.”
Tan, 33, was seen getting into a black Kia Sorenta vehicle which was escorted by a Proton Waja car after meeting her parents, Tan Booi Siam and Khor Ah Heok, at the state police headquarters in Jalan Penang.
Her father in his 70s and mother, 60s, who came to the police headquarters with Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and counsel Chia Loong Thye before 8am, brought clothes and food for Tan.
Khor said she and her husband were happy because they were allowed to meet their daughter and spent 15 minutes with her.
September 13, 2008 00:41 AM
Raja Petra, Teresa Kok, Sin Chew Reporter Arrested Under ISA
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 13 (Bernama) — Blogger Raja Petra Kamarudin, Seputeh member of parliament Teresa Kok and a Sin Chiew Daily News reporter were arrested Friday under the Internal Security Act (ISA).
Raja Petra was picked up from his house in Sungai Buloh at 1.10pm, Kok in front of her condominium here at 11.20pm while the Sin Chew Daily News reporter, Tan Hoon Cheng, was picked up from her house in Bukit Mertajam in Penang at 8.30pm.
Deputy Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar confirmed the arrest three.
Home Minister Datuk Seri Syed Hamid Albar earlier Friday said that Raja Petra was detained after it was ascertained that he could disrupt and threaten security and public order.
Syed Hamid said when contacted that the blogger’s detention came in the wake of various statements published by Raja Petra in his blog “Malaysia Today”, the latest being a commentary which allegedly ridiculed Islam and Prophet Muhammad.
Raja Petra reportedly incited Muslims with a commentary on the article “I promise to be a good, non-hypocritical Muslim” which contained sentences that ridiculed Muslims besides allowing a commentary which ridiculed Islam and Prophet Muhammad with reference to the article “Not all Arabs are descendants of the Prophet” published in the “Malaysia Today” blog.
Section 73(1) of the ISA permits the detention of an individual for up to 60 days.
In Penang, news of Tan’s arrest prompted several political party leaders, reporters and photographers to gather outside the Seberang Perai Tengah district police headquarters where the reporter was taken to.
Tan’s family members were also there but declined to be interviewed.
Tan is the reporter who wrote the news claiming that Bukit Bendera Umno division chief, Datuk Ahmad Ismail, had said in a ceramah during the Permatang Pauh by-election that the Chinese were mere “immigrants” in the country.
At 11.10pm, Tan was seen coming out of the Seberang Perai Tengah IPD accompanied by two policemen and entering a Proton Waja car, believed to be heading to the state police headquarters on the island.
The car was also escorted by two dark-tinted Proton Wira cars, and on passing by the group of waiting reporters, Tan managed to wave at them.
Bukit Mertajam MP Chong Eng, who was earlier allowed by police to enter the IPD to see the detained reporter but was not allowed to speak to her, told reporters that Tan who was not handcuffed, appeared calm but shed some tears.
Some 100 leaders and supporters of political parties, including from MCA, Gerakan and DAP gathered outside the police headquarters and lighted up candles as a sign of protest over the reporter’s arrest.
Meanwhile, Raja Petra’s wife, Marina Lee Abdullah, said 10 policemen came to the house and detained her husband at 1.10 pm and took him away at 1.50 pm.
Marina said the police also took several tapes and a computer from her husband’s room.
Raja Petra was detained under the ISA in April 2001 for his involvement in the reformation movement and was held for 53 days at the Kamunting Detention Centre in Taiping, Perak.