Ban non-drinkers from driving

Those British who came out to riot over the last few days came out with intent to riot, loot and plunder. They had no intentions to hold a peaceful demonstration. They were not concerned about loss of life or damage to property. They intentionally wanted to damage property. It was part of the plan.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

About 3,000 people die a year on the roads of Britain, a country with a population of about 72 million.

About 6,000 people die a year on the roads of Malaysia, a country with a population of about 27 million (now just touched 28 million).

Compare the two statistics above and it will be clear that it is more dangerous to drive or ride on Malaysian roads than on British roads. So, Malaysia should ban cars and motorcycles from Malaysian roads. Then less Malaysians will die every year.

The number of drink-driving deaths in Britain is about 400 a year. That comes to about 1.4% of the total road accident fatalities.

This means 98.6% of deaths on British roads are caused by drivers/bikers who DO NOT drink. And this also means people who DO NOT drink should be banned from driving/riding. Then less Britons will die every year.

Only three people died in the last few days of riots in the UK (due to a hit-and-run incident rather than due to the riot proper). Only one person died in the BERSIH march of 9th July 2011 (due to a heart attack).

So riots and demonstrations are safer than driving or riding a motorbike. This is because, over the last ten years, 30,000 people died on British roads and 60,000 on Malaysian roads. Over the last 30 years you can triple those figures because the statistics are basically consistent from year to year.

So we should encourage people to stop driving/riding and start rioting instead. The statistics prove that less people will die if they riot rather than drive/ride.

This sounds like a stupid argument, does it not? Well, no more stupid that the argument by the Deputy IGP regarding his comparison between the UK riots and the BERSIH march of 9th July 2011.

Those Malaysians who came out to demonstrate on 9th July 2011 came out with intent to demonstrate, not to riot. They were determined to demonstrate peacefully with no loss of life or damage to property.

Those British who came out to riot over the last few days came out with intent to riot, loot and plunder. They had no intentions to hold a peaceful demonstration. They were not concerned about loss of life or damage to property. They intentionally wanted to damage property. It was part of the plan.

How can the government and police compare BERSIH to what happened in the UK? There were two different motives here.

The BERSIH march was a political statement. There was no political statement in the UK riots. It was all about plundering, looting, robbing and stealing.

No, we can’t compare BERSIH to the UK riots. This would be like banning drivers/bikers who do not drink and only allowing drunks on the road because drinking and driving causes only 1.4% of traffic accident deaths.

Did not the Malays oppose the Malayan Union that the British were trying to impose on Malaya through a street demonstration? And was it not because of this demonstration that the British abandoned the plan for the Malayan Union and instead the Federation of Malaya was formed?

So, street demonstrations are not all bad. If street demonstrations are held for the purpose of delivering a political message, like opposing the Malayan Union, then it is good. But in the UK this was not a street demonstration. It was not about a political statement. It was a riot. It was about plundering, robbing, looting and stealing. That was the intent from the very beginning.

On the second matter below — the complaint by Ahmad Syauqey Abdul Ghani about human rights abuses in prison — what is he talking about? This is normal. This is what all of us have to endure in prison. Why only now complain when we have had to suffer this for a long, long time?

Yes, now they know what it is like in prison or under detention. We are no longer treated as humans in there. We are treated like animals. In fact, you would not even treat animals the way humans are treated behind those high walls and barb-wired fences.

Welcome to the real world. 


DIGP’s statement shows his ‘ignorance’, says Nurul

(Malaysiakini) — Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar hit out at deputy IGP Khalid Abu Bakar for saying that the Bersih electoral reform rally, if allowed to proceed unimpeded, will lead to the same rioting as now taking place on London streets.

“That statement only serves to showcase his ignorance,” Nurul Izzah told reporters when met outside the Petaling Jaya district police headquarters today.

In a posting on his Facebook page last night, Khalid Abu Bakar had said the ongoing riots in London and other major cities in Britain are evidence of the “nightmares” that can be prevented by avoiding street protests.

“Alhamdullilah, we are able to avoid these scary and tragic scenes from erupting here in our beloved country.

“Street protest should always be avoided as we will never know what it can turn into. Peace loving Malaysian will understand. The right to assemble must always be balanced with public order,” read his post.

Nurul Izzah added that she cannot accept such statements from the senior police officer and asked him to “check his facts first before opening his mouth next time”.

She pointed out that the root cause of the London riots was discontent because of government budget cuts and high unemployment in the riot hit areas.

This, she claimed, is different from the mainly middle class Bersih supporters who were not as inclined to such excesses.

‘Riots may be our future if we fail to reform’

However, the Lembah Pantai MP said one similarity between the situation in UK and Malaysia is the failure to reform an economic system that promotes the wealth gap between the rich and the poor. 

While Malaysia is not as worse off as the UK, she warned “that this is our future if we fail to reform”.

Police had declared the July 9 Bersih 2.0 rally illegal and outlawed the electoral reform movement itself and cracked down hard on anyone even suspected of supporting or wanting to attend the rally.

Police claimed it was only keeping public order and did so to prevent chaos, though this was disputed by Bersih organisers who had pledged a peaceful march. 

There was no recorded incident of looting or widespread property damage during the rally, with most damage seemingly resulting from tear gas and chemical laced water used by police. 


Kelantan prison detainees forced to strip naked

(Malaysiakini) — A former training director for election watchdog Malaysians for Free and Fair Elections (Mafrel) has complained of human rights abuses during his almost two-week-long detention at the Pengkalan Chepa Prison in Kelantan. 

Ahmad Syauqey Abdul Ghani said he and 113 other prisoners were ordered to strip in front of one another on June 23, the day he was sent to the prison.

“I was scared and confused, along with the other detainees who also had to strip naked. It was very embarrassing.

“We were ordered to strip in stages, 10 to 20 prisoners at a time… the situation, with more than a hundred naked men, was horrible, embarrassing and inhumane,” Ahmad Syauqey said.

Ahmad Syauqey, who has made several sketches to describe his time in detention, said the prison was overcrowded and stuffy.

“Ten other prisoners and I were ordered into a cell at the quarantine block. The size of the cell was 6ft by 12ft. 

“We had to squeeze against one another to fit in, and some of us had to put our legs on the walls, as there was no space to lie down. Many of us could not sleep due to the heat and over-crowding,” he said.

Ahmad Syauqey also said that the unhygienic conditions made it very difficult for Muslims to conduct their prayers properly.

The quarantine block is exclusively for detainees who have been remanded and are awaiting trial or bail.

Among other complaints he had are:

    1. No proper facilities for Muslims to pray;
    2. Only two pails of water for 10 to 12 prisoners to share for toilet use;
    3. Prisoners were told to defecate in front of other prisoners; and
    4. Prisoners were caned on their feet as punishment for ‘wrongdoing’.

Ahmad Syauqey has since lodged a report on his ill-treatment at the Kota Baru police station and plans to file a complaint with Malaysian Human Rights Commission (Suhakam), besides the email he has already sent.

When contacted, Pengkalan Chepa Prison director Husni Johari said an investigation was under way.

“For now, we will not be commenting as an investigation is already under way. It will be completed as soon as possible,” Husni said.

Ahmad Syauqey was arrested on June 20 under Section 186 of the Penal Code for obstructing a public officer and under Section 90 of the Police Act for behaving indecently in a police station.

He was remanded and sent to the Pengkalan Chepa Prison and was freed on July 5, after bail was posted in a magistrate’s court in Bachok. 

His case is fixed for Nov 2 and 16 respectively for hearing.