KUALA LUMPUR, March 18 — The “Proklamasi Orang Melayu” rally that was supposed to be held here at the Sime Darby Convention Centre in Bukit Kiara here tomorrow is off the cards.

The organiser Sekretariat Proklamasi Orang Melayu, which describes itself as a group of Malay volunteers concerned about the future of their race, said the programme headlining former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is “having difficulties” in getting a venue.

It said it was forced to look for a second venue after the first place chosen faced “technical problems”.

“However, this second location has to be cancelled as well as the convention centre management informed us about the cancellation at 9pm yesterday, which is 24 hours before the event is scheduled to take place.

“The convention centre management did not provide a reason for the cancellation,” the organiser said in a press statement today.

It apologised to its invited guests for the last minute change to the plans, adding that another announcement will be made in future, without specifying a time frame.

Apart from Dr Mahathir, two other prominent personalities linked to the planned rally were Professor Datuk Hashim Yaacob and former senator Tan Sri Ibrahim Shah Abu Shah.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had yesterday issued a warning against parties he said were using race and religion to promote strife, without overtly naming the rally.

“I have directed all security agencies to be alert because those who feel desperate or threatened will use this sentiment and it is the poor that end up being paid to create disturbance,” he said in a post-Cabinet press conference in Putrajaya yesterday.