Anwar warns Najib of popular revolt

By Shannon Teoh, The Malaysian Insider

PETALING JAYA, July 10 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim told his rival Datuk Seri Najib Razak today to carefully consider the tension on the ground in the aftermath of the chaotic Bersih rally yesterday instead of covering up the situation with lies.


After a bruising clash between police and demonstrators yesterday which saw 1,700 arrested, one dead and scores including himself injured, the opposition leader accused the government of lying over the number of protestors and making the false claim that no one was hurt.

Speaking at a dialogue with young professionals today, the opposition leader was asked if Malaysia was about to experience a “Hibiscus Revolution”, a reference to the national flower.

“We have no confidence left in (the government), so it is important for Najib to consider seriously, we are close (to a revolution),” Anwar said, adding that racial tension was also simmering.

The PKR de facto leader told reporters later that it was time that Najib “listen and not be so arrogant with the use of brute force. The people have become impatient. They have submitted memorandums, they have even gone to see the king. What else can they do now?”

Inspector General of Police Tan Sri Ismail Omar said yesterday evening that only 6,000 attended the rally for free and fair elections and no one was hurt but Bersih claimed an attendance of 50,000 and several Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders were hospitalised after yesterday afternoon’s events.

Bersih has also blamed the police for the death of Baharudin Ahmad, the husband of Setiawangsa PKR division chief Rosni Malan, who was said to have died because the police had withheld medical aid from Baharudin after he collapsed while running away from tear gas and water cannon fire.