Najib says Bersih can go ahead if held in a stadium

(The Malaysian Insider) – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today that the government was willing to allow the Bersih rally to proceed if it was held in a stadium.


“This is a reminder before it’s too late. If they want to submit a memorandum and so forth they can show democratic decency by cooperating with authorities.

“We are willing to provide a stadium for them to rally but why choose to protest in the streets. The government is not against them rallying in a stadium from morning until night. Just don’t hold street protest as it is very risky to the nation,” he said.

Najib’s remarks come a day after the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, Tuanku Mizan Zainal Abidin, stepped in and asked the government and Bersih to negotiate their differences.

The prime minister was addressing civil servants at his department’s monthly gathering this morning.

He pointed out that the planned July 9 rally was not a good way to find a solution to any grievance the groups have.

“The illegal rally is not intended to correct the system but is politically motivated to gain power via undemocratic means.

“Street protests will give a free ride to many people. There is no guarantee that everything will proceed peacefully. Those who love rioting and chaos will take advantage of the situation. This is what we want to avoid,” he said.

Najib’s remarks comes after the government embarked on a nationwide clampdown on Bersih 2.0, hoping to block the now-outlawed coalition’s plans for its July 9 rally.