Thursday, 17 February 2011

This will disappoint many Dr. Mahathir haters, did you know that when he was PM he wanted to abolish the ISA

Well folks the truth can be painful to some, now, those Dr. Mahathir haters cannot any more accuse Dr. Mahathir  as being a dictator by citing the Operation Lallang mass arrests of politicians from both sides of the political divide in 1987. Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh will be greatly disappointed I think, so will Dr. Kua. The news:
From The Star: 

Dr M says he wanted to abolish ISA but police said ‘no’

KUALA LUMPUR: Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said Thursday that he had wanted to abolish the Internal Security Act (ISA) when he was prime minister but the police persuaded him to reconsider.
Then Inspector General of Police, Tun Hanif Omar, backed Mahathir’s statement on Thursday.
Both were panel speakers at a programme entitled ‘Current challenges of democratic system and Malaysian constitution towards achieving Vision 2020’ at the Parliament’s banquet hall, which was attended by about 200, including senators and members of parliament.
A very well known ISA detainee during the Ops Lallang also confirmed what Dr. Mahathir finally revealed today and Dr. Chandra does not mince his words, from the MI:

Chandra Muzaffar defends Dr M on Ops Lalang arrests

KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 17 — Former ISA detainee Dr Chandra Muzaffar today backed Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s claims that a 1987 crackdown had not been initiated by the former prime minister.
Chandra, who was among the 106 arrested then, said he was convinced during his 57-day detention that Ops Lalang was purely a police operation and was not ordered by Dr Mahathir.
“Based on my experience, I was brought from Penang to Kuala Lumpur where I met Tun Hanif (Omar). During that meeting, Tun Hanif said it was a police operation; he has been very consistent,” said Chandra, who was once a fierce critic of Dr Mahathir when he was the Parti Keadilan Nasional (now PKR) deputy president in 1999.
“The first 60 days of arrest was a police operation,” said the former Universiti Malaya academic.
Dr Mahathir had recently blamed the police for the mass Internal Security Act (ISA) arrest in 1987, which led to the detention of then Opposition Leader Lim Kit Siang, his son Lim Guan Eng and 104 others.
He was quoted in a new book by American journalist Tom Plate as saying that he had met all opposition members before the operation and had assured them they would not be arrested.
Dr Mahathir also insisted that he thought it unnecessary to arrest the opposition leaders but had no choice other than to accept that the police believed otherwise.
 Despite his support for Dr Mahathir’s claims, Chandra maintained that the ISA needed to be abolished as it allows for detention without trial.
“ISA must be abolished, but maybe it should be replaced with another security law which requires trial; it could be an open or a closed trial,” said Chandra.
He added the mechanism currently in use to invoke the ISA left the law open to abuse.
“Innocent individuals have been arrested especially at the initial stage,” said Chandra referring to the initial arrests that police are empowered to make prior to the issuance of the home minister’s detention order.
The ISA was introduced in 1960 after the end of the Malayan Emergency as a preventive detention law to combat the Communist insurgency.
Despite what Dr. Mahathir thinks about the ISA, I still believe that a multiracial and multi-religious Malaysia needs preventive Laws like the ISA whether we like it or not. It is important for Malaysia's stability.

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