PSM members to be questioned again

Nine PSM members have been summoned to Arau for further investigations on Sept 5.

(Free Malaysia Today) – Nine members of Parti Sosialis Malaysia (PSM) have been summoned by the police for yet another round of questioning. This time they’ve been summoned under the Sedition Act 1948.

A summons notice was issued under Section 111 of the Criminal Procedure Code (CDC) on Aug 11 for the nine to be present at the Arau district police headquarters in Perlis on Sept 5.

Four of the nine summoned were among the 24 who were arrested on June 25 for their involvement in PSM’s “Udahlah tu…Bersaralah!” campaign. They were released after a week-long remand period.

The remaining five are Sungai Siput MP Dr Michael Jeyakumar, PSM’s national youth chief R Saratbabu, Sungai Siput division secretary A Letchumanan  and central committee members Choo Chon Kai and M Sukumaran.

The five together with deputy chairman M Saraswathy were held for three weeks under the Emergency Ordinance (EO) 1969. They came to be known as the EO6.

But the summons to turn up at the Arau police on Sept 5 did not include Saraswathy. She was not among among those who were picked up in Arau on June 25.

Archaic law

At a media conference today, Jeyakumar slammed the upcoming investigation as “totally unnecessary” given the numerous rounds of investigations and recording of statements previously.

“We have given so many statements already and summoning us for yet another investigation is harrassment in our view,” he said.

“The Sedition Act is a colonial, archaic law that the police are using to drag us to Arau.”

Jeyakumar believed this latest move by the police stemmed from their refusal to admit that they had made a mistake in arresting and detaining the PSM members.

“This is unprofessional and a disappointment..

“ When the police enter the political arena it lowers their credibility and weakens their capacity to safeguard the nation.”

“We will go to Arau because if we don’t they could issue arrests warrants against us but I hope they come to their senses soon.

“We are prepared to co-operate but not to be bullied,” he said.

When asked if there was a possibility of a re-arrest following next Monday’s investigations, Jeyakumar said it was possible but he hoped that the police wouldn’t be “so stupid” as to do so.

Illegal summon

When asked what the line of questioning would be, Jeyakumar said they were not sure but it was likely to be related to the pamphlets that they were distributing during the campaign.

One of the pamphlets called for political reform while another was an introduction to PSM.

Lawyer, N Surendran, who is representing the nine in this case said that the very act of summoning them under Section 111 is illegal as no crime has been committed.

He pointed out that if a notice is issued without a crime taking place first, then the crime is committed by the police themselves and tantamount to abuse of power.

“All they have done is distribute pamphlets which is not a crime under our laws,” he said.

“Also no police report has been provided as to why the nine are being investigated again and we don’t even know who the complainant is.”

“This is a deliberate political persecution for an ulterior motive. The government is behaving like the dictatorship in North Korea, there is very little difference between the two now.”