An open letter to DYMM Yang di-Pertuan Agong to advise against the red shirt rally
Ampun Tuanku. Salah dan silap dalam kata-kata patik harap diampun.
As DYMM Tuanku is clearly aware, there is a proposed ‘red shirt’ rally which is supposed to take place in Kuala Lumpur on Malaysia Day, Sept 16, 2015.
As a Malaysian, I cannot seem to identify the very purpose of the rally apart from it being perceived to be a racial congregation. And dare I say that I am not the only one having that notion.
While it is a constitutional right to assemble peaceably and without arms, I cannot help but to be fearful of what agenda the rally may end up achieving at the end of the day.
While we can acknowledge the reality of the political structure in Malaysia as being essentially race-based, but that is politics. Political parties seeking to promote their agenda through their forums and avenues are very much entitled to do so in ways they seem fit and proper. However, as stated earlier, that is politics.
DYMM Tuanku, we can surely agree that race-based politics in Malaysia is a far cry from the actual community based living among Malaysians which do not at all show any racial tension or anything of that sort. This is especially so in the rural parts of Malaysia.
That brings me to my point. This ‘red shirt” rally is apparently organized by an NGO. It is also apparently to be joined by other NGOs. As far as I can remember, NGOs are apolitical.
If this rally is not a politically motivated rally, then the only perception one can get is that it is racially motivated. The slogans and phrases connected to this rally definitely seem to lend weight to that perception.
In all my 39 years as a Malaysian, I have never encountered a racially motivated rally being held in the streets of Kuala Lumpur. I suppose I was fortunate enough not to have been around during the 1969 riots in Kuala Lumpur and to have witness the described atrocities that had come with it.
DYMM Tuanku, I am seeking your indulgence and time to perhaps look into this proposed ‘red shirt’ rally and see in which direction it is headed to, and if possible, advise the organisers to reflect and see if there actually is a need for it.
As Malaysians, we have been taught not to hate, but to show compassion to one another. Yes, times may be rough and the roads may be winding, but we must persevere. In fact, as I am writing this letter, I sincerely feel nothing but compassion for the organisers and intended participants of the proposed ‘red shirt’ rally. I honestly do not see the purpose of this proposed rally, and I sincerely doubt the intended participants do either.
With Malaysians now being plagued with all sorts of economic woes affecting livelihood and day-today living , a racially motivated perceived rally on the streets of Kuala Lumpur is definitely not a good move as it may sometimes lead to actions and decisions made out of frustration, and that can easily spark something untoward and spiral out of control.
DYMM Tuanku is probably the best person to advise and part wisdom in these trying times.
Ampun Tuanku. Apa yang patik persembahkan harap diampun. Patik mohon mengundur diri.
PUTHAN PERUMAL is an advocate and solicitor of the High Court of Malaya.