Saturday, 12 January 2013

See You In Stadium Merdeka!

Rally stays put at Stadium Merdeka, says Pakatan
Despite Kuala Lumpur police chief Mohmad Salleh's suggestion for organisers of tomorrow’s People's Uprising Rally to change the venue to Bukit Jalil, Pakatan Rakyat is determined to keep to its plan to gather at Stadium Merdeka.

PAS deputy president Mohamad Sabu said that as Pakatan has already made preparations for Stadium Merdeka, to change venue at the last minute would be impossible.

“This is the final day before the rally. The preparations at Stadium Merdeka have come to the final stage, the sound system is already prepared... We will not change the venue,” he told reporters at the PAS headquarters in Kuala Lumpur today.

He added that the historic stadium at the heart of the city is a convenient location due to easy public transportation access, the mode of travel for most participants.

“Most of the participants will take public transport. They will disembark at the Puduraya bus terminal and the train station (which) is close to Stadium Merdeka.”

If there is a change of venue, he said, it will be difficult for organisers to ferry them.

PKR vice-president Tian Chua, who was also present, supported Mohamad’s statement, describing the changing of venue as “academic”.

Yesterday, Kuala Lumpur police chief Mohmad Salleh suggested Bukit Jalil stadium as the venue for the rally because it could accommodate more participants.
Crowd to 'walk' to stadium
Asked on whether the participants marching from gathering points to the stadium would be defined as “street protest”, Mohamad dismissed this.
He said that police had already agreed to the plan and the crowd will “walk” to the stadium.

“…This is not a street demonstration, it is just like we are walking to the pasar malam,” he reiterated.

Chua added that the street protest is walking without a “final destination”, whereas for Saturday’s rally the participants will converge at the stadium.

According to the rally’s secretariat, there is an additional gathering point at Amcorp Mall, Petaling Jaya, which will be led by PKR Youth chief Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin and PAS Youth chief Nasruddin Tantawi. This has increased the initial seven points to eight.

Meanwhile, activist Hishamuddin Rais announced that the rally itinerary will include singing the national anthem, and speeches by leaders of Pakatan parties as well as NGOs.


Where To Congregate Before Heading To Stadium Merdeka

Seven marches to Stadium Merdeka planned
4:51PM Jan 10, 2013
Organisers of the People's Uprising Rally are calling on participants to join seven processions towards Stadium Merdeka before the Saturday rally officially gets underway.

According to the latest instructions by rally organisers, the seven rally points for the procession and the respective leaders of the processions are as follows:

Universiti Malaya mosque 
Nurul Izzah Anwar (PKR)
Ng Suee Lim (DAP)
Adam Adli (Solidariti Mahasiswa Malaysia)

Maria Chin Abdullah (Bersih 2.0)
S Arutchelvan (PSM)
Zulkiflee Anwar Ulhaque @ Zunar (cartoonist)
M Kulasegaran (DAP)

Husam Musa (PAS)
Teo Kok Seong (DAP)
Mazlan Aliman (Anak, PAS)

Jalan Sultan 
Ishak Surin (Muafakat)
Tan Kok Wai (DAP)
Wong Tack (Himpunan Hijau)

Central Market 
Dr Siti Mariah Mahmud (PAS)
Teresa Kok (DAP)
Elizabeth Wong (PKR)

Kelab Sultan Sulaiman, Kampung Baru 
Badrul Hisham Shaharin @ Chegubard (Solidariti Anak Muda Malaysia)

Masjid Negara 
Azmin Ali (PKR)
Muhajid Yusof Rawa (PAS)
Khalid Samad (PAS)

According to political activist Hishamuddin Rais, who is on the organising committee, the announcement of designated procession leaders was requested by the police.
He told Malaysiakini that the organisers will also be heeding a police request not to march from Dataran Merdeka.
NONEHishamuddin (far right) also announced that organisers strongly discourage the use of private vehicles by rally participants and urged them to use public transport to reach the rally points.

He said those setting up stalls to cater for the participants are only allowed to operate at the Maharajalela monorail station, the vicinity of the Kuala Lumpur and Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall and the Hang Tuah LRT station.

Once the stadium reaches saturation point, late-comers are required to sit outside the stadium.

He also urged all participants to behave appropriately during the rally.

"This is a peaceful assembly. Please avoid all forms of provocation. Don't create chaos," he said. 

Saturday, 5 January 2013

Plight Of Stateless Children

KUALA LUMPUR: Millions of children in Malaysia went back to school this week as the new school year begins.

But many stateless children continue to be denied access to the national school system.

For brothers Hari and Haran, who are deemed "stateless" by Malaysian authorities, their wait continues. 

They cannot enrol in national schools as they have no birth certificates.

The two brothers were believed to be aged four and six when they were found along a highway outside Kuala Lumpur eight years ago. They had no documentation with them.

The Agathian Shelter in Petaling Jaya has been their home since. 

In June last year, Channel NewsAsia highlighted the plight of some of these stateless children in Malaysia. 

At that time, Hari and Haran could hardly speak in English. Now six months on, the boys have grown, and thanks to the good work of some volunteers who home-schooled them, they are now a lot more upbeat and can express themselves easily in English. 

"They said you don't have birth cert, you can't come to school, only boys with birth certs can go to school," said Hari.

Haran said: "I want to go to school, a real school and I want a lot of friends, a lot of teachers to teach me everyday." 

The shelter has been trying over the years to locate the boys' parents.

Under the federal constitution, they can only apply for citizenship if either of their parents is Malaysian. 

Mogan Sivabalan of Agathian Shelter said: "We have published in newspapers at least 13 times, in six or seven major dailies in all four languages, and we still could not find the parents, maybe the parents are not alive." 

There are believed to be some 49,000 stateless children like Hari and Haran in Malaysia who were denied access to national education. 

The Home Ministry has promised to look into the matter but response has been slow. 

Mr Mogan added: "Till today, there's no answer, we are calling the departments, all the people relating to this are not at their desks. I don't know where are they, they are not replying to us, we don't know where it's going." 

He blames the government for turning a blind eye to the plight of the stateless children.

Without an ID, that's required in order to be legally employed or lawfully married in this country, their future remains bleak.