Haris resigns from Bersih 2.0

He says it’s time for him to refocus his attention on his ongoing campaign.

(Free Malaysia Today) – Lawyer-turned-activist, Haris Ibrahim, today announced his resignation as Bersih 2.0 steering committee member – exactly one month after the July 9 rally took over the streets of Kuala Lumpur.

Haris, who was involved in the first Bersih rally in 2007, said his decision was based on the need to separate Bersih’s non-partisan stand from his personal political leaning.

“If you noticed, I had not written anything on my blog (The People’s Parliament) in the run-up to the rally,” he said. “This is because Bersih 2.0 has been non-partisan from its inception to its launch.”

“But Haris Ibrahim via my blog has always been anti-BN. Not because I love the opposition but because BN and Umno have long been the bane of this nation.”

Haris explained that he found it increasingly difficult to express his thoughts on his blog without his writing being misconstrued as Bersih’s point of view.

The frustration led him to contemplate his post-Bersih step and he decided that it was time he turned his attention back to pursuing his ongoing “DNBN Kuburkan BN” campaign ahead of the 13th general election.

“My involvement in this campaign would have created a perception problem for Bersih 2.0,” Haris said. “The committee understood that I’m passionate about this campaign and that I will continue giving my full support to Bersih from the outside.”

“The rally has been successful and the steering committee is in the good hands of (Bersih 2.0 chairperson) Ambiga (Sreenevasan), so no worries there.”

Asked whether he had anticipated this predicament ahead of the rally, Haris said that he had given very little thought to where he would plant his feet when he first got involved in Bersih.

“Politics in this country has been so fluid,” he added. “It was very hard to say where things were going back then and where I would be turning my efforts to.”

He also laughed off speculation that he had chosen his resignation date to commemorate the one- month anniversary of the Bersih 2.0 rally.

“Not at all, it has nothing to do with the date,” he said. “My resignation wasn’t even pre-planned.”