May Day ban ‘unacceptable, unnecessary nuisance’, says Sabah DAP

Bersih 2.0 Sabah vice-chair Jannie Lasimbang speaking at an interview in Kuala Lumpur on August 14. — Picture by Choo Choy May
Bersih 2.0 Sabah vice-chair Jannie Lasimbang speaking at an interview in Kuala Lumpur on August 14. — Picture by Choo Choy May

KUALA LUMPUR, April 29 — The court order to stop a May Day rally in Sabah by the police was “totally unacceptable and unnecessary”, Sabah DAP said today after two of its lawmakers were named and banned from the proposed venue.

The state chapter’s Deputy Chairman Stephen Wong said that the “act of nuisance” disrespected democracy and the freedom enjoyed by the public, and was a move to oppress and suppress ordinary folks from speaking up.

“Is that really necessary and to get court order injunction? Why is the police so afraid of people assembling peacefully?,” asked Wong in a statement.  

The court order was issued on April 27 in response to Sabah Bersih 2.0’s planned gathering of 10,000 people in the town field on May 1 which was rejected by local authorities.

The court order covers Padang Merdeka — where the event was initially planned for — City Park, Segama waterfront, Dataran Bandaraya and Taman Chong Thien Vun and its surroundings.

The order, signed by magistrate Mohd Faiz Omar, is to prevent several named respondents and their supporters from gathering at the proposed location despite not getting approval.

Those named include opposition leaders such as DAP state leader and Kota Kinabalu MP Jimmy Wong Tze Phin, DAP state secretary and Dr Edwin Bosi (DAP), PKR vice chairman Darell Leiking and ex-senator Datuk Maijol Mahap.

The Sabah chapter of civil society group Bersih 2.0 however said yesterday that its planned May Day rally in the city will still go on.

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