Protestors move towards KLCC to mark end of rally

Protestors move towards KLCC to mark end of rally
Nurul Izzah, daughter of jailed Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim, speaks to the crowd during a rally to protest against his imprisonment in Kuala Lumpur on March 7.

KUALA LUMPUR - Heavy rain midway through the rally in support of jailed Opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim failed to dampen the spirits of protestors, who proceeded to march to KLCC from Sogo.

At the Sogo building, opposition and NGO leaders spoke to the crowd and said the Federal Constitution provided for freedom of assembly.

Batu MP Tian Chua said the people's participation in this rally was patriotic and in accordance with the Constitution.

However, he said the number of people who participaated in the rally was not great and hoped to see greater participation in the future.

Anwar's daughter and Lembah Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar said the people had gathered because they were "true fighters".

"We are the majority voice of Malaysia. We want a clean leadership," said Nurul Izzah.

Other leaders seen at the rally were Shah Alam MP Khalid Samad, PKR president Datuk Seri Wan Azizah Wan Ibrahim and former Bersih chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenivasan.

At about 4.20pm Saturday, organisers announced to those gathered that they would be proceeding to KLCC, as rain started to fall.

The crowd, numbering in its thousands, ‎started to move into Jalan Sultan Ismail, bringing traffic to a standstill.

Traffic police were seen directing traffic at the intersection of Jalan Sultan Ismail and Jalan Ampang as protesters marched.

Traffic was slow-moving around the KLCC area at around 5.20pm as protestors began to converge there.

The rally soon ended and the crowd started to disperse at around 6.10pm.

Police officers were present throughout the rally to ensure smooth traffic flow, albeit in small numbers.

When contacted, city police chief Senior Deputy Comm Datuk Tajuddin Md Isa said that its officers were dispatched to monitor the rally and to prevent any untoward incidents from happening.

SDCP Tajuddin, however, added that any offences committed at the rally would be subject to investigation.

Among items to be probed after the rally would be two firecracker "explosions" near Sogo and KLCC.

"I am still waiting for the district police chief to brief me on the matter, but I have been notified that firecrackers were set off at the rally," he added.

The rally was organised to show support for Anwar, and aims to pressure authorities to free the PKR leader who was jailed five years after being found guilty of sodomising his former aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan.

On Feb 28, the rally's organisers rejected an offer from police to hold the rally at a stadium.

On Wednesday, Dang Wangi district police chief Asst Comm Zainol Samah said organisers had yet to submit an application for the rally and warned the public against participating in it as it had been deemed illegal.

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