Sunday, January 8, 2012

Hisham: No way cops would give unconditional nod to rally

Hishammuddin said police would not have announced their approval unless PKR had acceded to the conditions

Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein today backed assertions by Kuala Lumpur police that the 10 conditions imposed on a rally in support of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim tomorrow were agreed upon during their meeting with PKR leaders.

“Obviously, the police would not have held a joint press conference with him (Azmin) without having agreed on the conditions under which the assembly could be held so as not to disrupt peace and order,” the home minister was quoted as saying by Bernama Online today.

PKR leaders including deputy president Azmin Ali and Youth chief Shamsul Iskandar Mohd Akin met with city police on Friday after earlier pledging to rally 100,000 people in support of Opposition Leader Anwar during the announcement of his sodomy trial verdict tomorrow.

After the meeting, both PKR and Kuala Lumpur CPO Datuk Mohmad Salleh announced police sanction for the planned mass rally. No conditions were mentioned by Mohmad during the brief, joint press conference with PKR.

Sentul police later announced a set of 10 conditions on the rally after “considering safety and public order factors”, triggering a row between police and PKR leaders over the acceptance of the clauses.

Today, Mohmad insisted PKR had agreed to the 10 conditions set out for its rally, calling Azmin a “liar” for saying the conditions were not agreed to during their meeting on Friday.

PKR vice president N. Surendran today said Shamsul had signed on the letter to acknowledge its receipt, but not to indicate consent for the enforcement of the clauses.

Mohmad today also warned that “police have already planned the action that will be taken on the organisers” in the even the conditions are breached.

Anwar, 64, is charged with sodomising former male aide Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan at a condominium in upscale Damansara Heights here in June 2008, a few months before returning from a decade in the political wilderness and winning back his Permatang Pauh parliamentary seat.

This represents the second time he has been prosecuted for sodomy.

If found guilty, he could spend up to 20-years behind bars but will escape the caning penalty as he is over 60. It would effectively spell the end of his political career and his chance to be prime minister.

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