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May Day rally is on, no permission needed, says PSM

 | April 21, 2017

The organisers have facilitated the annual rally for 23 years and no permission has been required from any premise owners, it says.

S-Arutchelvan-maydayPETALING JAYA: The organiser of a May Day rally today vowed to proceed with the gathering despite police outlawing it on grounds they did not get the consent of the venue owner.

But PSM, which is one of the organisers, argued there was no need to do so as they plan to gather at a public space.

“We don’t have to ask for permission since it will not affect the businesses around the Lot 10 area in Bukit Bintang,” the party’s central committee member S Arutchelvan told FMT.

Arutchelvan also said the organiser had been holding such rallies since 1994. They were also held around the globe to raise awareness about workers’ rights.

“We have held such assemblies annually for 23 years. The last time, when we marched from Maju Junction to Medan Pasar, there was no permission needed from them.”

Arutchelvan went on to reveal that the organising committee had already fulfilled the minimum requirement under the Peaceful Assembly Act (PAA) 2012 and had notified the Dang Wangi police earlier this month about the planned assembly.

He added that the committee had taken the necessary steps and precautions to ensure the rally would run smoothly.

Arutchelvan also said the peaceful march will be monitored by the Human Rights Commission of Malaysian (Suhakam) and the Bar Council.

Earlier today, Dang Wangi police chief ACP Mohd Sukri Kaman warned the organisers against going ahead with the rally.

Sukri said this was because the organisers had failed to get the green light from Lot 10 owners as stipulated under the act.

Apart from PSM, other organisers comprise of 15 NGOs, including Jaringan Rakyat Tertindas (Jerit), Suaram, Women’s Aid Organisation (WAO), Sisters in Islam (SIS) and Justice for Sisters.

On April 19, the organisers announced that the May Day rally will see participants march peacefully from the KTMB station in front of the National Mosque to Bukit Bintang.

The theme of this year’s rally will revolve around a workers’ retrenchment fund in support of those who lost their jobs due to companies either closing down or downsizing.

Other demands include women and migrant workers’ rights, the call for RM1,500 as the minimum wage; and ending discrimination based on sexual orientation and gender identity.


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