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Opposition Leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim today charged that the Umno-led Barisan Nasional are showing signs of desperation by using the police to intimidate Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders. Anwar claimed that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and his wife are behind the campaign of police harassment against PR. “I sense this continued harassment by the police by the behest of the political masters and clearly under the administration of Datuk Seri Najib and Rosmah. There is this intimidation using the police. I had to deal with three police reports filed by the police themselves and one by a so called concerned citizen,” he told reporters here.

The four police reports were lodged on the 16, 17, 22 and 27 of February. Anwar said that Umno were using scare tactics to stop the democratic process in the country. “We strongly resent and protest this continued intimidation by the police force. We also strongly protest how the police is used by Umno leadership of Datuk Seri Najib and Rosmah to hinder the process of democracy in the country. If this is the way to scare us then I would like to guarantee on behalf of Pakatan Rakyat that it does not even bother us a bit

“When authoritarian leaders sense that there is a demand for change and sentiments against their oppressive policies, they normally resort to punitive and oppressive measures,” he said. Anwar gave a statement to the police today — joining the list of Pakatan Rakyat leaders who have been asked to meet the police over their recent public speeches at four gatherings. Three uniformed and two plain clothed police officers arrived from Penang to interrogate Anwar at party headquarters at noon. The interrogators from Timur Laut were led by ASP Mohd Syukry Moh Ali.

Anwar confirmed that he is currently being investigated for unlawful assembly, sedition and criminal defamation. At these gatherings Anwar spoke about the legislature’s and judiciary’s loss of credibility, the lost jet engines, the death of the Mongolian model, the second sodomy trial and developments in ‘Allah’ controversy. “What is this? What is the purpose? Why is there apparently mention of the Altantuya murder, mention commission of corruption regarding the procurement of two submarines and there is mention of the jet engines and sodomy trial. Why is this a case of concern by the police? Unless there is of course rioting and disturbances. These are peaceful assemblies, many of them with permits and some of them are just tea parties,” he said.

So far those questioned have been Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, R. Sivarasa and Salahuddin Ayub. The latter two being vice-presidents of PKR and PAS respectively. Sivarasa and Salahuddin have had their statements taken following accusations that they made seditious statements at a public rally in Penang early last month. Salahuddin disclosed that the police inquired about portions of his speech which touched on ‘Allah’ but the Kubang Kerian MP refused to answer their questions. Sivarasa, also the Subang MP, was asked about his comments on Anwar’s sodomy trial which is ongoing.

Anwar also urged the police to be independent when exercising their duty. “Our advice to the police is focus on the problem and security. Don’t be servants of the Umno corrupt leaders. Let political leaders collide at the Parliament and don’t be used by political leaders and concentrate on the problem of increasing crime,” he said.


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