Call on Malaysians regardless of race, religion or politics to unite and rally behind the SSS Anwar campaign for 3Saves – to Save Anwar, Save Pakatan Rakyat and Save Malaysia
When Nurul Iman, the second youngest of Anwar Ibrahim’s six children, spoke just now about the injustices, trials and tribulations of Anwar Ibrahim, having to be incarcerated at the age of 67 for the fourth time in his 47 years of public struggle for justice, freedom, human dignity and good governance , I am reminded of my first arrest under the Internal Security Act (ISA) 46 years ago in 1969.
Nurul was eight years old when Anwar was given the infamous “black eye” after he was sacked as Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister and detained briefly under the ISA, the heavy price he paid for standing up against the autocratic Prime Minister of the time, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad against corruption, cronyism and nepotism.
When I was first arrested in May 1969, the Chief Minister of Penang Lim Guan Eng was also only eight years old. My other three children were respectively seven, five and three years old.
When the May 13, 1969 racial riots broke out in Kuala Lumpur, I was in Sabah. I was never in Kuala Lumpur after the May 10, 1969 general elections but this has not stopped UMNO propagandists and cybertroopers from continuing with their dastardly campaign of lies and falsehoods especially on social media through tweets and Facebooks alleging that I was in Kuala Lumpur from May 11 – 13, 1969, leading “victory processions” and hurling anti-Malay slogans to cause the May 13 racial riots.
I was speaking at a public rally in Kota Kinabalu on the night of May 13, 1969 when I first learnt that racial riots had broken out in Kuala Lumpur.
I was in the invidious position of being stranded in Kota Kinabalu and several hours later being expelled from Sabah by the then Sabah Chief Minister, Tun Mustapha for the fierce criticisms which I made against him at the Kota Kinabalu public rally in aid of an independent parliamentary candidate.
I kept in touch with party comrades and family members who advised me not to return to Peninsular Malaysia as I was on the ISA “blacklist” and sure would be arrested on my return. They advised me to stay away from the country for a period until the “crisis” was over.
I had just been elected on May 10, 1969 as Member of Parliament for Bandar Melaka, and I felt that I owed a duty to the voters of Bandar Melaka and the people of Malaysia that I should not run away but return to Peninsular Malaysia to be with them when the country and people were in trouble, whatever personal price in terms of liberty or even life that I had to face.
I came back to Peninsular Malaysia three days later and was immediately arrested at the Subang Airport, starting my first sojourn under the ISA.
Anwar had been advised by his friends in Turkey, Indonesia and United States not to return to Malaysia as he was most likely to be jailed for Sodomy II, but he felt he could not run way from Malaysia but must come back to the country to face whatever consequences awaited him, by a system of administration of justice which is regarded internationally as having fallen far short of minimum international standards.
What did I return to Malaysia in 1969 to sure ISA arrest?
Why didn’t Anwar take the advice of his international friends and go into exile from the country to avoid another spell of incarceration – a five-year jail sentence followed by another five years of disenfranchisement of his civic and citizenship rights banning him from elective office and even the right to cast his vote, until he is 77 years old?
This is because we are Malaysian patriots who dedicate our lives to the betterment of our country so that our children and children’s children can hold their heads high as citizens of a country where there is justice, freedom, human dignity and good governance.
Nurul Iman with her husband Feirdhauz have joined us in a five-stop whistle tour in Bukit Gambir, Grisek, Kundang Ulu, Labis and Segamat today not only to convey Anwar’s Chinese New Year greetings to all Malaysians from Sungai Buloh Prison, but also as part of the DAP’s SSS (Support, Sympathy and Solidarity”) Anwar Ibrahim campaign.
On behalf of Anwar’s children, the second generation of six Anwar siblings have one clear and consistent message – that they will not rest until Anwar regains justice and freedom!
Nurul Izzah is in Kajang, Nurul Huda is in Penang, and the other siblings, son Nurul Ihsan, daughters Nurul Ilham and Nurul Hannah are all over the country and the world to seek justice for their father.
Anwar has lost in the courts of law in Malaysia, but there are still higher courts where Anwar has already won – the court of Malaysian public opinion and the court of international opinion.
In the 14th General Elections in three years’ time, the voters of Malaysia will be the judges and if they unite to reject UMNO/BN and elect the Pakatan Rakyat Federal Government in Putrajaya, then the stage will be set for Anwar to finally regain justice and freedom.
The SSS Anwar campaign is not just for Anwar but for the restoration of justice, freedom and dignity for all Malaysians.
I call on all Malaysians, regardless of race, religion and politics to support the SSS Anwar campaign, the March to Freedom and all other programmes to restore to Malaysia our self-respect as citizens of democratic country where there is economic justice, human rights, the rule of law and good governance.
The SSS Anwar campaign is dedeicated to “3Saves” objectives – to Save Anwar, to Save Pakatan Rakyat and to Save Malaysia!