Why Anwar’s arrest matters for liberty and justice

… is the title of John Lee’s article HERE. I reproduce an excerpt of his article (assuming permission is granted).

Activism is not just about marching in the streets or arguing with authority figures, though these are important aspects of it. Activism is about spreading the spirit of citizenship and the spirit of liberty. Activism is telling your friends why what is going on is wrong. Activism is expressing support for citizens who are oppressed and see their basic freedoms denied, be they prominent people like Anwar Ibrahim and Raja Petra Kamarudin, or nobodies like ISA detainee Shahrial Sirin, who could not even hold his daughter one last time before her last breath because the government has detained him without even charging him for any crime for seven years. Activism is being a good citizen. Activism is patriotism.

There is nothing wrong with being angry with the way things have turned out. But there are always better ways to generate that anger into something more productive than lashing out in what would be a knee-jerk reaction.

Anger and fear are the two things that stop people from thinking.


6 Comments on “Why Anwar’s arrest matters for liberty and justice”

  1. warrior2 says:

    Poor Saiful. He is completely forgotten!
    I don’t think he has been forgotten. It is in the seeking of justice for Saiful that Anwar has been called to give a statement. But in the seeking of justice for one party, the right of equal protection under the law for the other party shouldn’t be denied.

  2. warrior2 says:

    But what if the OTHER PARTY is painted to be a “victim” when things could have been so straight forward and simple but somehow were made so complicated/complex and full of drama.

    Let me also expand a little bit more if I may. When Anwar made that ACA report against IGP and AG, the 2 person went to aca for thier statements to be recorded. No funfare no drama. He also went there, no funfare no drama. Because it was his own allegation and report? He is everwilling to come forward?

    Now, the sodomy allegation. How come so complicated one for him to have his statement recorded?

    When I read the article I suddently realised that everything now is about anwar and how he is being ‘victimised”. Thats why my earlier comment about poor saiful!
    I guess there are a lot of things that go deeper than face value.

  3. warrior2 says:

    The problem with some of us is that, we dont go deeper. And thats my concern.

  4. Anon says:

    Kenyataan Media Pasca Penahanan 15 Julai 2008

    On Saturday, 12-07-2008, the police came to my house to serve a Section 111 Criminal Procedure Code notice, harassing my family and demanding my presence at the IPK Kuala Lumpur (Federal Territories Police headquarters) at 2pm on Monday, 14-07-2008 despite an earlier agreement with my lawyers for me to come to the IPK on Monday 14-07-2008. On the next day, Sunday, the police also served an ex-parte court order, prohibiting me from physically being within 5 km from the Parliament on Monday 14-07-2008. As you can see, my house and the IPK KL are within 5 km radius from the parliament building. The court order effectively put me under house arrest on Monday and at the same time prevented me from going to the IPK.

    On Monday, 14-07-2008, the presence of police personnel outside the compound of my house strengthened our suspicions that they would be prepared to arrest me as soon as I left the compound of my residence, on the pretext of me violating the court order. The issue here, is which order should I comply with, the ex-parte court order or the Section 111 notice from the police?

    On the same day, the police through the Investigating Officer, one DSP Jude Pereira wrote and faxed to my lawyer at about 1.06pm, informing that I was required to be present at the IPK KL on Wednesday, 16-07-2008 at 2.00 pm to assist with the investigation. I conveyed my agreement to the appointment and it was communicated to the police through my solicitor, Messrs S.N Nair and Partners via telephone and letter on the same day.

    On Wednesday, 16-07-2008, I was at the Anti Corruption Agency (BPR) head office to record my statement pursuant to the police report lodged by me at IPK Shah Alam on 01-07-2008, against the Attorney General Gani Patail and the Inspector General of Police Musa Hassan for their involvement in the fabrication of evidence way back in 1998. To ensure that we will be able to attend the appointment with the police at 2pm, we cut short our statement at the BPR’s office, and this fact was clearly conveyed to the BPR officers present.

    At about 12.45 pm, the IO, DSP Jude Pereira called Mr Nair to confirm about our attendance and Mr. Nair confirmed that we would attend that 2pm appointment. We were about to have a quick lunch at my house before proceeding to the IPK. 5 minutes later, we were ambushed by a team of masked and heavily armed police personnel near my house.

    I was arrested and brought to the IPK. I cooperated fully with the police by giving my cautioned statement from 2.30 pm to about 7.30 pm. At this particular point, the IO and the other officers handling this case were doing their job professionally. I was then given assurances by Assistant Commissioner of Police Razali and later Senior Assistant Commissioner II Khor (through my lawyer) that I would be released on police bail on the same day.

    However, later on, upon my return from Kuala Lumpur General Hospotal (HKL), the IO, DSP Jude Pereira informed me and my lawyers that I will be detained and put in the police lock-up overnight for the purpose of recording a further statement in the morning.

    I and my lawyers protested, giving our undertaking that we will be back anytime required by the police to continue with the recording of the statement, and there was no need for me to be detained overnight, and that I should be released on police bail. The police, through the IO were adamant that I should be detained and put in the police lock-up overnight, despite them knowing about my physical condition. I had to spend the night sleeping on a cold cement floor, which aggravated my back injury which was due to the beating I received from the then IGP, Tan Sri Rahim Nor on 20th September, 1998.

    This morning, after a short statement that was recorded for about 30 minutes, I was released on police bail. I was in pain and had to immediately receive some medical treatment upon my return home.

    I now wish to deal with the statement of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Director, Dato Mohd Bakri Mohd Zinin as appeared in Utusan Malaysia today, inter alia

    “Pasukan khas bertopeng polis terpaksa memintas kenderaan DSAI di Bukit Segambut di sini dan menahan Anwar ekoran tindakan Penasihat PKR itu mengubah haluan kenderaannya pada saat-saat tempoh yang diberi kepadanya untuk menyerah diri kepada polis pada pukul 2 petang ini hampir berakhir”

    This is a blatant lie from the CID director to cover up their shameful act of abuse of police powers. I have given the assurances and had just informed the IO 5 minutes before the disgraceful ambush by the police through my lawyer who was with me in the same car.

    In addition to the above, the Deputy Home Minister, Wan Farid said, as reported in Star Online that, I “went voluntarily to the police car without any incident.” Again, this is also a blatant lie by the government.

    I take to task the IGP for this abuse of police power against me through the events I’ve narrated above. It appears that the events of the last few days, the nature of my unwarranted arrest, my overnight incarceration which was actually absolutely unnecessary, were an act of personal vengeance against me in retaliation to the reports I lodged earlier against him, which are now being investigated by the ACA.


    I have reasonable grounds for having no confidence in the system. In the course of the trial of the false allegations of sodomy in 1998, DNA evidence was fabricated and used against me. The persons responsible for the fabrication then were the IGP, SAC Rodwan and the AG, are new key players in this investigation.

    Until now, I have been denied access to the police report made by the accuser against me.

    My accuser is still under police protection and as such, any fabrication is possible if they take my DNA. My decision to refuse a DNA test is taken through advice of my lawyers and DNA experts, both local and overseas.


  5. Kenny says:

    Hi Michelle,

    Can’t resist putting a few words here due to some coincidence, though it’s out of topic.

    I just mentioned John Lee and your name in a commentary some hours ago in MT.(

    Keep it up!
    Thanks for the encouragement. 🙂

  6. Jeremiah says:

    Let us not allow ourselves to be misled, bewildered and confused by the recent media/blog obsession with Anwar/Najib controversies. It is too easy to equate support for Anwar as pro-democracy and pro-liberty. He is only the defacto leader of PR.

    Are the leaders now more important than the values which they represent, which is for the interests of the people?

    In other words, bloggers are losing the plot. We are so focused on the short-term drama of Anwar/change of government/etc that we lose focus of the daily need to be productive, insightful and pragmatic. We all have to live and there are major issues of world economic recession facing Msia in coming months. A change of government ain’t going to solve the critical issues of today.

    Of course we can be neutral for once. Focus on the issues and not on the destinies of the leaders.
    Hear, hear.

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