Concern at curfew at Kota Bharu

Statement by Parliamentary Opposition Leader and DAP Secretary-General, Lim Kit Siang, at a Press Conference held at KL DAP Office at 63D Jalan Sultan, Kuala Lumpur, on 20.10.1977 at 12 noon.

Concern at curfew at Kota Bharu

The DAP is deeply concerned at the incidents in Kota Bharu yesterday and the imposition of the curfew in the Kelantan state capital.

The rakyat must have the final say as to who is to govern them, and the rakyat must be given this opportunity.

The State Assembly in Kelantan should be dissolved and a general elections be held, as many issues of great concern to the people have been raised, and a clear and full mandate by the people of Kelantan is needed for whoever is to be the new Kelantan Government and Mentri Besar.

Telegram to Defense Minister, Dato Hussein Onn, about another incident of trigger-happy soldiers assaulting civilians.

I have received a report from DAP State Assemblyman for Kluang, Sdr. Lee Kaw, of another case of trigger-happy soldiers assaulting civilians. This happened in Kluang in the early hours of yesterday morning, when soldiers in uniforms and armed with guns went in trucks to Jalan Lambak, Kluang, breaking windows, and throwing missiles and assaulting people. Two bullets of the automatic rifle type were found at the scene and Sdr. Lee Kaw who immediately went to the scene of the incident at about 12.30 a.m. yesterday, asked the Police to take away the bullets or otherwise, some boys picking it up may be charged under the Internal Security Act carrying the death penalty.

There are too many incidents of soldiers assaulting civilian in the country. A very serious one took place recently in Kampong Simee, Ipoh.

If these incidents are not stopped, and soldiers educated to be responsible citizens, the people will lose confidence in the army. I have therefore sent a cable to the Defence Minister, Dato Hussein Onn, expressing grave concern at the increased spate of incidents of soldiers assaulting civilians and going on a rampage, and asking for immediate disciplinary action to put these incidents to a stop. My telegram to the Prime Minister read:
“Another incident of of trigger-happy soldiers assaulting civilians this time in Kluang, Johore. Increased spate of such incidents various parts of country undermine public confidence in army. Immediate action needed to discipline soldiers and restore public confidence in army.”