Walk For Freedom
Nov 29th 2011, hundreds of lawyers staged the “Walk for Freedom” march to register their opposition to the Bill which is repressive, encroaches into the civil liberties of the people and violates the Federal Constitution.
Bar Council president Lim Chee Wee said “The Malaysian Bar, and indeed Malaysia, is now facing such a moment of challenge and controversy – an objectionable Bill, being rushed into law with unseemly haste and without adequate public consultation, which effectively robs the rakyat of our constitutional right to freedom of assembly.”
Lim stressed that the Bill, which aims to replace Section 27 of the Police Act in regulating public assembly, is far more restrictive than the current law.
“It is not a piece of legislation which we, as lawyers, can watch enter our statute books without standing up against it.
“It is not a piece of legislation that we want future generations to inherit, without us walking, and spending every ounce of our energy to oppose. If this piece of legislation makes it to the statute books, future generations will inherit a nation that is far from modern and progressive.”
Quoting Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s speech on the eve of Malaysia Day on Sept 15 this year, Lim pointed out that the Bill was not “in accordance with the supremacy of the constitution, rule of law and respect for basic human rights and individual rights” as Najib promised.
“We feel let down by how far short this Bill falls in relation to what the Malaysian people were promised in the Prime Minister’s Malaysia Day 2011 message. In short, the prime minister must walk his own talk,” he said.