by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Wednesday, April 7, 1993:
Inspector-General of Police should explain why the Police is allowing a public rally against the Sultan of Kelantan in Kota Bahru this Saturday while continuing to ban the Opposition from holding public rallies.
The Inspector-Genera of Police, Tan Sri Hanif Omar, should explain why the police is allowing a public rally against the Sultan of Kelantan to be held in Kota Bahru on Saturday while continuing to ban the Opposition from holding public rallies.
The Kota Bahru anti-Sultan of Kelantan public rally was announced by the Minister of Youth and Sports, Datuk Annuar Musa last weekend, who said that thousand of people are expected to gather near the Istana in Kota Bahru to protest against the Sultan of Kelantan for his alleged involvement in politics.
Although Annuar said that UMNO Baru was not involved in the anti-Kelantan Sultan public rally, it is clear who is behind the public rally when the Youth and Sports Minister has assumed the role of public spokesman to publicly announce it himself.
It is clear that UMNO Baru is not only behind the anti-Sultan of Kelantan public rally, but is giving the public rally its full protection and patronage.
DAP has been calling for the lifting of the 15-year ban on public rallies as the reason for imposing the ban in 1978 – the so-called 30th anniversary celebration of the armed insurrection of the Malayan Communist Party – had long ceased to exist.
If the Police continues to impose the ban – while selectively allowing public rallies to be held which received the protection and patronage of UMNO Baru, as in Saturday’s public rally against the Sultan of Kelantan – the police would seriously compromise its non-partisan independent role.
If the police wants to permit the anti-sultan of Kelantan public rally in Kota Bahru on Saturday, then it should revoke its 15-year ban on public rallies so that political parties – whether ruling or Opposition – could communicate with the people directly.
DAP will apply to the Police for the holding of public rallies throughout the country if it permits the anti-Sultan of Kelantan public rally to be held in Kota Bahru on Saturday.