Thursday, May 7, 2009

Ipoh ‘a warzone’, says Kit Siang - Malaysian Insider

UPDATED 12.00pm

DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang argues with police personnel over not being allowed to enter the Perak state secretariat building

GOF personnel stand guard outside a restaurant near the Perak state secretariat building to enforce the 500m ban from the building

Police arrest Kubang Kerian MP Salahuddin Ayub in Ipoh today.

* Ipoh restaurant owners refuse to close shop. Police give up and instead start buying drinks

* Police order closure of all restaurants in vicinity of state secretariat in order to disperse crowds

* Parit Buntar MP Mujahid Rawa arrested in Ipoh

Yet another arrest, this time of Sg Siput Member of Parliament Jeyakumar, who was detained about 10m from the so-called “democracy tree”

* According to Lim Kit Siang, those arrested so far include Lau Dak Kee, DAP veteran chairman, former rep R.K. Muthu, blogger Zorro (Bernard Khoo), Lee Kong Hing, previous Negri Sembilan state organising secretary, Sg Pinang rep Koid Teng Guan, Bahau rep Tey Kok Seong, Temiang rep Ng Chin Tsai, Teratai rep Jenice Lee, Melaka rep Khoo Poay Tiong, Taiping DAP Youth chief Tey Kok Lim.

* PAS Youth chief Salahuddin Ayub detained for illegal assembly about 20m from the so-called “democracy tree”

* 22 people have been arrested so far including former Perak DAP Chief Lau Dak Kee.

Ipoh Barat MP (second left) arguing with Ipoh OCPD Azizman Alias after he and Ipoh Timur MP Lim Kit Siang were banned from entering the state secretariat building in Ipoh. Pix courtesy of The Star

Teratai ADUN arrested

IPOH, May 7 — Eleven people, including two lawmakers, were arrested and scores others refused entry into the Perak State Secretariat as police locked down Ipoh city into what DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang called "a warzone" ahead of a controversial state assembly meeting.

Traffic was gridlocked as police rolled out barbed wire and mounted road blocks in a 500-metre radius from the building, allowing in only those with special passes and prevent hundreds of protesters clad in black T-shirts from the sitting to be opened by Raja Muda Raja Nazrin Shah.

Police confiscated two boxes of the banned "One Black Malaysia" printed t-shirt from the Pakatan Rakyat supporters stall in Manjoi. Pix courtesy of The Star

"This has become a war zone. This is a national and international disgrace. Even when we have received official invites from the speaker, we are refused entry," Lim told reporters outside the restricted zone after his car was stopped from entry.

"It is most shameful and outrageous," the Ipoh Timur MP added. Beside him was Ipoh Barat MP M. Kulasegaran who was also not allowed into the complex. Kula's personal aide was earlier detained by police for refusing to leave the place.

PKR Wanita chief and Ampang MP Zuraida Kamarudin and DAP's Teratai assemblywoman Jenice Lee were also among those arrested. Both were clad in black T-shirts and wore caps that said “Bubarkan DUN” or “Dissolve the State Assembly”, a key demand by the Pakatan Rakyat government toppled by Barisan Nasional in early February.

The electoral reform group Bersih, comprising opposition parties and some activists, urged Malaysians to wear back today, prompting police to arrest its spokesman Wong Chin Huat two days ago for sedition. The media studies lecturer is expected to be released from police remand tomorrow.

It is learnt that police have seized 200 black T-shirts emblazoned with the words “1BlackMalaysia” from a stall near a Kampung Manjoi surau where PAS supporters had earlier performed subuh or dawn prayers. Police had earlier warned against people gathering or wearing black.

They also shut down the roads around the state secretariat, causing traffic congestion in this normally sleepy capital city. Police said the roads will be reopened later in the day.

Ousted Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohammad Nizar Jamaluddin and his executive council together with backbenchers, equalling the Barisan Nasional numbers at 28, were taken with police escort to attend the sitting in the 59-seat assembly.

Three other lawmakers are independent after they walked out of Pakatan and precipated the imbroglio.

Police yesterday set up roadblocks at the Jalan Panglima Bukit Gantang Wahab-Jalan St John junction and near the Jalan Tunku Abdul Rahman flyover.

They had obtained a court order to prevent illegal gatherings around the state secretariat and traffic police were on hand to divert traffic around the government sector in Ipoh.

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