KUALA LUMPUR: A coalition of 30 NGOs will hold a peaceful rally at Dataran Merdeka on Dec 9 to compel the government to put an end to extrajudicial killings, deaths in custody and other forms of violence perpetrated by the state against members of the public.

The rally is scheduled to begin at 2pm.

The group calls itself the Stop State Violence Movement. The member organisations include Suaram, Tenaganita, Lawyers for Liberty, Angkatan Warga Aman Malaysia, Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia and Malaysians for Beng Hock.

According to Tenaganita chief Irene Fernandez, the coalition would present a list of demands that “the government must fulfil to curb this culture of impunity among enforcement agencies, which is not only affecting locals but also migrant workers”.

The demands include the following:

  • The government must prosecute all the culprits responsible for police brutality and deaths in custody
  • The government must set up the Independent Police Complaints and Misconduct Commission that a royal commission recommended in 2005
  • The government must establish an ombudsmen system that will require enforcement agencies and their detention centres to abide by human rights principles

Referring to prison and lock-up deaths and police killings, Fernandez said: “Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein, Inspector General of Police Ismail Omar and MACC chief commissioner Abu Kassim Mohamed must remember that the public will not be deceived by their half-hearted investigations.”

Eric Paulsen of Lawyers for Liberty spoke about the deaths of A Kugan and Teoh Beng Hock in 2009 and the killing of 15-year-old Aminulrasyid Amzah in 2010.

“Till now, their families have yet to receive justice for the tragic loss of their loved ones,” he said.

“Police will promise to probe the matter without fear or favour, but we find nothing at the end.”

He also referred to the case of D Dinesh, the 26-year-old man who was gunned down in Ampang last August by police riding in unmarked cars.

“The police quickly accused him of being a gangster who was on his way to commit a crime,” Paulsen said.

“However, he had no criminal record and eyewitnesses said the police were shooting away like they were in the wild, wild west.”

Suaram executive director E Nalini said the rally had become necessary because all previous engagements with the authorities had failed to bring about any change.

“Recently, we sent two letters to the IGP, requesting for a meeting to talk about how to resolve these matters, but we never received any reply,” she said.

She said the coalition had chosen to rally on Dec 9 because it would be the eve of International Human Rights Day.

Stop State Violence Movement will go on a nationwide road show over the next month to gather support for the rally.

G Vinod | November 2, 2012, Free Malaysia Today