Rally go­ers full of praise for cops

The Sun (Malaysia) - - NEWS WITHOUT BORDERS - BY ASHWIN KU­MAR AND AMAR SHAH MOHSEN

KUALA LUMPUR: Po­lice earned a feather in their cap for their sub­tle ap­proach in man­ag­ing the fifth edi­tion of Ber­sih 2.0’s rally on Satur­day and also the Red Shirts rally the same day.

The cops merely kept a vig­i­lant eye on par­tic­i­pants and assisted in traf­fic flow and there were no com­plaints from any party of high-hand­ed­ness by po­lice per­son­nel.

Many were full of praise for the cops and felt safe with their pres­ence at Dataran Merdeka, Bangsar, Masjid Jamek and Padang Mer­bok here.

De­spite In­spec­tor-Gen­eral of Po­lice Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar’s ear­lier warn­ing that po­lice would not hes­i­tate to take anti-riot mea­sures, Satur­day’s ral­lies pro­ceeded with­out a sin­gle tear gas can­is­ter be­ing fired.

For­mer Ber­sih chair­man Datuk S. Am­biga was pleased at how rally-go­ers were left alone, but said it was un­nec­es­sary to have closed off the en­trance to Dataran Merdeka.

“I have no ob­jec­tions or quar­rel with the po­lice. The way they fa­cil­i­tated and left us alone was very com­mend­able,” she said, adding that the road clo­sures were un­nec­es­sary.

Datin Paduka Ma­rina Ma­hathir, ac­tivist and daugh­ter of for­mer prime min­is­ter Tun Dr Ma­hathir Mo­hamad, sim­i­larly con­grat­u­lated the po­lice for their han­dling of what might have turned out into an in­cen­di­ary sit­u­a­tion.

Although Ma­rina pointed out that po­lice chose to ar­rest 14 lead­ers of both Ber­sih and Red Shirts on the eve of the ral­lies, she said they had oth­er­wise per­formed com­mend­ably in main­tain­ing peace and se­cu­rity on the rally day it­self.

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