KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 13 — About 500 shopkeepers and 773 traders in Petaling Street have decided to close their business on Sept 16, due to the proposed Peoples’ Unity Gathering, here, for safety reasons.
Kuala Lumpur Hawkers and Petty Traders Association chairman Datuk Ang Say Tee said the decision was made after a discussion with several non-government organisations (NGO) on Sept 5.
“Ninety per cent of the traders here have decided to close their business on the day in question to ensure their safety and to prevent any untoward incident,” he told reporters at a Walk About programme jointly organised by NGO, community heads and traders in Petaling Street, today.
He hoped those responsible for organising the gathering would cancel the gathering because many businesses in the area would be affected as they would be forced to close for the whole day.
Ang said the gathering, which was racist in nature, was not suitable with Malaysia Day which should be celebrated with a patriotic spirit in a plural society.
More than 50 representatives of 20 NGO took part in the programme to socialise with traders and Chinese residents in the area to prove the Malay community was not vengeful.
The programme was also attended by Pro-Rakyat president Khairul Anwar Othman, Bukit Bintang Member of Parliament Fong Kui Lun and several NGO including Otai Reformis.
Khairul said 2,000 members of Pro-Rakyat and 500 members of Otai Reformis would camp in areas including Petaling Street and Bukit Bintang from morning to midnight on the day in question.
“As Muslims, also Malays and Malaysians, we wish to give our assurance that we will not allow the people of Malaysia, regardless of race, to be harmed,” he said.
The Peoples’ Unity Gathering or more well-known has been planned on Sept 16 in the national capital.
Malaysian National Silat Federation (Pesaka) president Tan Sri Mohd Ali Rustam yesterday said Pesaka would hold the gathering in Padang Merbok if permitted by the Kuala Lumpur City Hall and not in Bukit Bintang or Petaling Street. — Bernama