Gerakan accepts Bersih’s olive branch


PETALING JAYA: Gerakan Youth has offered to help Bersih find a stadium to hold its next rally, following the latter’s recent olive branch to Gerakan and rival rally chief Jamal Yunos.

Although Gerakan Youth chief Tan Keng Liang questioned Bersih on their real motives, he said that he was “prepared to give Bersih the benefit of doubt”, offering Gerakan’s help to find a stadium for Bersih’s rallies.

“Though we may not agree with Bersih’s hidden agenda, we hope Bersih would accept our proposal if their intention is to hold a peaceful demonstration,” he said in a statement on his Facebook page.

This follows Bersih’s offer to Gerakan Youth and rival rally chief Jamal Yunos to join in to pressure the government for institutional reforms and fight against corruption.

Bersih chairperson Maria Chin Abdullah said that the two groups, instead of giving in to threats of violence and fear, should show some leadership by raising concerns on the recent announcement of misappropriation of funds related to 1Malaysia Development Berhad.

Tan, however, remained critical of Bersih’s muted criticism against Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng following the charges of corruption against him.

“Why didn’t Bersih organise a demonstration to demand DAP’s Penang Chief Minister YB Lim Guan Eng go on leave after the corruption charges in court against him?”

Tan said that Bersih’s ultimate goal is to “overthrow the current democratically elected government” in favour of the Opposition. This is clearly undemocratic and unconstitutional.

“In the past, we have also observed that street demonstrations by Bersih had caused chaos and violence such as that seen during their event in 2012. Private and public properties were damaged; massive traffic jams were caused, affecting the lives of those at surrounding areas,” Tan said.

“Notwithstanding the aforesaid, we are prepared to give Bersih the benefit of doubt in the event they are agreeable to hold their Bersih 5 demonstration in a stadium peacefully.”