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Malaysia Pakatan Expects Large Crowd In Rally Against BN Rule

Gyani Jarnail Singh

Sawa lakh se EK larraoan
Jul 4, 2004
Pakatan expects large crowd in rally against bn rule


KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 12 ― Pakatan Rakyat (PR) is confident of getting one million people in its “Himpunan Kebangkitan Rakyat” today, with its leaders saying last night the “historic” mega-rally will show the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition that its 54-year rule is nearing the end.
Some 6,000 people attended a gathering at the Sultan Sulaiman Club here last night, where more than 70 opposition leaders and activists fired up the crowd with speeches of change and the imminent fall of BN.

Among the speakers were PAS deputy president Mohamad Sabu who called the rally at the historic Stadium Merdeka where Independence was declared, the start of the final battle for Putrajaya.

“Tomorrow’s rally will be the last before we take over the government,” shouted Mohamad, better known as Mat Sabu, a favourite among the Islamist party and opposition faithful.

The crowd, mostly Malays, appeared upbeat as PR leaders went over the opposition’s election chances.

A sense of camaraderie was also prevalent as the crowd of strangers, mostly donning yellow or green tees with “BN will fall” written on them, shouted in sync slogans of “people power” and “the end of BN”.

Playing up this sentiment was PKR vice-president Chua Tian Chang, who said this spirited display of people power would send chills down rivals’ spines.

“This is not just about changing the government. It is about how the people will rise and rewrite history. That they will no longer tolerate a cruel regime,” he said.

The 13th general election, which must be held by midyear, is set to pit the ruling coalition against its most organised opposition but while pundits predict a tight race, BN is expected to retain most of the seats it garnered from the last elections.

A recent survey released also showed that although his approval rating dropped by two percentage points, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak still enjoys support from the country’s Malay majority as well as the Indians although analysts believe this will not necessarily translate into votes for the ruling bloc.

Observers believe the rally will be the gauge to see if the campaigns used by the opposition have mustered enough support to put PR on the path to Putrajaya.

The mega-rally will see the participation of civil society movements pushing for various demands ahead of Election 2013, including the scrapping of the Lynas rare-earth plant in Kuantan, the promise of fair royalty payments to oil-producing states, free education and a fair electoral process.

Rally organisers expect those at the rally to be clothed according to the signature colour of their respective causes — fluorescent green for anti-Lynas groups, canary yellow for electoral reform group Bersih 2.0, orange for the anti-Felda Global Venture Holdings (FGVH) listing movement and bright red for pro-oil royalty groups.

Those taking part will march from eight different points across the capital city, where some roads are already closed to traffic.

Police have said they will facilitate entry for those attending the rally but there were a number of complaints in the social media about roadblocks on highways leading the city.



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