July 14, 2011
Inspired by the success of Bersih 2.0′s ‘Walk For Democracy’ march last Saturday and the fact that some 100 Sarawakians had taken part, the Movement for Change Sarawak (MoCS) is planning to hold its own ‘rally for democracy and reforms’ here on Aug 13.
MoCS chief Francis Siah said the movement’s leaders had decided on Sunday to organise “A Walk for democracy and reforms” instead of organising a anti-Taib Mahmud rally originally planned for Aug 13.
He said MoCS will apply for a police permit for the event.
“We assure the police that it will be a peaceful rally and we will heed any reasonable advice/demands from them.
“We will extend our fullest cooperation to all law enforcement agencies in the state capital to ensure no untoward incidents on that day,” said Siah.
He said the event will be held from 2pm to 5pm at either the Padang Merdeka or Kuching Waterfront.
“We hope to gather either at Padang Merdeka or Kuching Waterfront and then walk to either Reservoir Park or Museum Grounds where we will hold the rally.
“By 5pm, everyone should disperse. This is our commitment to the police,” Siah said.
Sharing Bersih message
He said the rally would be a compromised version of the original street protests to force Taib, who is Sarawak Chief Minister, to step down.
“In our sincere efforts to adopt a non-confrontational approach, we invite all patriotic citizens, even leaders and supporters of the government, to join us in demanding urgent changes and reforms in the governance of Sarawak for the betterment of our beloved home state and people.
“For too long, the state has been trapped in a quagmire of widespread corruption and the politics of fear and intimidation.
“We wish to educate all Sarawakians that politicians whom they elected to public office should be there to serve them and not vice-versa.
“The people are the masters, not those who govern.
“When those who govern do wrong by abusing their power, it is the people’s duty and responsibility to vote them out,” he said.
Siah added that while ‘patriotism to country and loyalty to government’ was important, it was equally essential that the same sense of raesoning is given to ousting bad leaders and government.
“MoCS also supports Bersih’s simple message to the government – give us free and fair elections, true democracy and a better future for our children.
“The movement will issue a 10-point declaration at the rally on Aug 13,” he said.
He stressed that the rally would solely be a citizen’s initiative with no political affiliation or involvement.
Nonetheless, we welcome all concerned citizens, whether they are apolitical or politicians, to participate in the rally.
“MoCS will not be campaigning for support from any established groups for the rally.
“We prefer spontaneous and voluntary support from all who care and love their state and nation and who earnestly want to help bring about genuine reforms.
“MoCS is also encouraging those who are unable to come to Kuching and those living in other parts of the state and country and even overseas to organise similar walks in solidarity with their fellow citizens and friends in Kuching,” Siah said, urging all participants to come in red, the theme colour of the movement.