KUALA LUMPUR: #TangkapMO1 rally organiser Anis Syafiqah Md Yusof says she has not broken any rules of Universiti Malaya (UM) where she is an undergraduate.
She pointed out to FMT that the rally was held outside the university campus and also during a semester break.
As such, she felt she had not breached provisions under the Universities and University Colleges Act 1971 (Auku).
Yesterday, almost two months after organising the rally at Dataran Merdeka, Anis was handed a show cause letter from UM and faces the possibility of suspension for smearing the good name of the university.
Anis is a final year Language and Linguistics student.
“I think the university’s move can affect its public perception. What UM is doing will also allow outsiders to see its real administration.
“It should be seen as a place that promotes freedom of expression. But now it has to be prepared for criticism from the public.”
Speaking further, she said the letter did not come as a surprise. But the fact that it took this long did puzzle her.
“I already anticipated that if I went ahead with the rally, the university would issue me a show cause letter.
“But I initially thought the university did not care because I did not receive the letter earlier.”
According to Anis, the letter was issued to her by UM’s Vice-Chancellor Prof Dr Rohana Yusof, who claimed the undergraduate had “tarnished or threatened the university’s interests and good name.”
“I received the letter on Oct 17 and have been given seven days to reply. What confuses me is that the letter was dated Oct 12, but I only received it through email yesterday.
“My lawyer friend said the seven-day period commenced on the day I received it and that means next Sunday is the last day for me to send a reply.”
She said normally, after receiving a show cause letter, a student would be given counselling before facing UM’s higher-ups for action.
She also said that based on the experience of her senior, Fahmi Zainol, students who organised a rally could be suspended for two semesters.
Her three other friends, from UM’s Islamic Studies faculty, have also been issued a show cause letter each for participating in the rally.
The rally, which drew 1,500 participants at Dataran Merdeka, was held to urge the authorities to act against the unnamed “Malaysian Official One” mentioned in the United States’ Department of Justice’s 1MDB-linked civil suits.
“Personally, I really want to complete my studies. I will work towards obtaining my degree even if action is taken against me,” said Anis, who hails from Sabak Bernam, Selangor.