Cops question Bersih 4 organisers


KUALA LUMPUR - The organisers of Bersih 4 rally were questioned for more than two hours at Bukit Aman on their involvement in the two-day rally over the weekend.

Bersih 2.0 chairman Maria Chin Abdullah and six others were asked by police officers on their media statements, who the committee members were, the launch of the rally on Aug 14 and its preparation.

They were also questioned on donations they had received.

"They asked about how much we have in the accounts, did we advertise on social media (to collect the donations) and how we will utilise it," Maria told reporters yesterday.

During the interview, which ended around 1pm yesterday, the police also questioned deputy chairman Sarajun Huda, treasurer Masjaliza Hamzah, committee members Farhana Halim and Fadiah Nadwa, secretariat member Mandeep Singh and student activist Adam Adli.

They were questioned following police reports lodged against the organisers of the 34-hour rally.

The seven are believed to have been questioned for committing offences under the Penal Code for attempting to carry out activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy, unlawful assembly and concealing a design to commit an offence punishable with imprisonment.

Maria said they did not answer all the questions posed by the police.

"We exercised our right not to respond to many of the questions, including the donations. We will answer them in court if we are charged," she added.

She said Bersih had received RM2.45mil (S$823 million) in donations so far, and an audit would be carried out on the accounts.

"We will prepare a budget on what we are going to do with the money. Quite a bit will go into the rally, including rental of equipment. The rest will go to re-delineation cases, voter education and voter registration as a run-up to the 14th general election," she added.

On the RM65,000 clean-up bill demanded by the Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government Ministry, Maria said they would wait for the bill and fight it out in court.

"We will challenge it, but we would also like to know if they did the same for other organisers.

"It is the responsibility of the Kuala Lumpur City Hall to clean up the streets anyway. How are they going to prove it? This is ridiculous," she added.

On Tuesday, Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Dahlan said the amount was the cost of cleaning up the areas frequented by the demonstrators and repairing damaged property.

He accused the demonstrators of having urinated everywhere, including on flower pots behind buildings, under staircases and in drains.

More about