WE, THE UNDERSIGNED Malaysians in Global Bersih, recognise the leaders and supporters of the coming Bersih 4 protest rallies in Malaysia as true patriots.
These Malaysians are united as citizens first and foremost, irrespective of race, religion or politics, and they stand for the highest values of nationhood.
Importantly, we believe Malaysia’s young, who are expected to attend the Bersih 4 rallies in the tens of thousands, are rightfully angry and dejected at our cabinet, parliamentarians and the officers of public service bodies.
They have sought truth and justice over the most fundamental principles that underpin accountability and transparency in a democratic government. Their efforts in the name of the right to dissent, freedom of expression, a free press and justice have been thwarted.
Malaysians have been attacked, arrested and intimidated. They have been called criminals for asking the most important questions of their leaders.
We call on the government and public service leaders we address here to recognise that Bersih 4 is about protecting parliamentary democracy, transparency and accountability.
We ask you to listen to this Malaysian voice and empathise with the pain, anger and disillusionment felt by the very people you claim to represent.
We ask you to act as true Malaysian patriots. Recognise you are bound by the responsibilities of your respective offices to protect, help and welcome those who risk real danger on 29/30 August in the name of fundamental democratic values.
As citizens living overseas, we fear the rally participants in Malaysia may face unprecedented violence. Trouble may be deliberately caused by parties that seek to undermine the true principles and objectives of Bersih 4. This may lead to an ugly crackdown on true patriots.
We pray this will not happen in the fateful hours ahead.
We pledge to organise solidarity rallies in cities worldwide on August 29, in honour of our brothers and sisters who will stand for justice in towns and cities of Malaysia.
We recognise two Malaysians whose work and leadership over many years have re-charted the course of our history in ways we could not have imagined.
Maria Chin Abdullah and Ambiga Sreenevasan deserve the nation’s gratitude for making us believe we must all play our roles to earn true democracy in Malaysia, that change is more probable today than ever before, and that our future is entirely in our hands.
Colin Rajah, president, Global Bersih (San Francisco)
Global Bersih Steering Committee, comprising –
Secretary: Bala Chelliah (Geneva); Treasurer: Lydia Chai (Auckland); Steering Committee members: Yolanda Augustin (London), Azza Basaruddin (Los Angeles), Ivy Josiah (Kuala Lumpur), Lim Chong Pin (San Francisco), Charis Quay (Paris)
Adam Choy, Christchurch
Canberra Global Bersih city coordinator
Dennis Chandran, Busan
Dr Kim K. Tee, Chicago
Edinburgh Global Bersih city coordinator
Francis Kheng, London
Houston Global Bersih city coordinator
Janice Lee, Geneva
Jasdev Singh, Washington DC
Los Angeles Global Bersih city coordinator
Manhattan, Kansas Global Bersih city coordinator
Pamela Wong, Auckland
Perth Global Bersih city coordinator
Praveen Nagappan, Melbourne
Rio de Janeiro Global Bersih city coordinator
San Diego Global Bersih city coordinator
Suzhou Global Bersih city coordinator
Wellington Global Bersih city coordinator
William de Cruz, Sydney
Zurich Global Bersih city coordinator