Selangor Menteri Besar Mohd Azmin Ali has claimed that the investigation against organisations which received funds from Open Society Foundations (OSF) linked to American billionaire George Soros is a smokescreen for the political crisis plaguing Umno.
“They are unable to generate any positive appeal for the people so they are turning to their old tricks of creating fear and hatred based on a rotten foundation of lies,” he added.
The PKR deputy president urged Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak and Umno to end their bullying of human rights activists.
“These are the people who are trying to make Malaysia better. Those who make it worse should not stand in their way,” he said.
Azmin also claimed the campaign is based on a “spurious conspiracy theory” that Malaysian activists championing the cause of free and fair elections, women’s empowerment, free speech, and human rights are conducting activities detrimental to parliamentary democracy under Section 124C of the Penal Code.
“The use of 124C and the powers of the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act (Sosma) is excessive and wholly irrelevant to the conduct of NGOs such as Bersih, Lawyers for Liberty and Empower who help the downtrodden, disadvantaged and needy through lawful means respectful of the Federal Constitution.
“The very causes that these groups work peacefully for – such as free and fair elections and free speech – are supposed to be guaranteed by our Constitution. There is absolutely no basis to use the harsh repressive measures of Sosma and 124C against civil society,” he added.
Pointing out that the conspiracy theory centres around these individuals purportedly being puppets of foreign powers, Azmin said Soros is once again being used as a bogeyman to encourage people to cling to Umno for safety.
“Yet I have to ask, isn’t the Malaysian economy open to foreign investment?
“Is an organisation’s funding only questioned when they point out the abuses that Umno/BN have committed against human rights and against the democratic rights of the Malaysian people to enjoy a parliamentary democracy established on free and fair elections?” he asked.
Azmin also questioned why the prime minister did not consider the deposit of foreign funds into his personal accounts as an issue of parliamentary democracy.
“Surely if foreign powers are able to directly influence the highest political office through donations there should be some accountability for it?” he added, referring to the RM2.6 billion in Najib’s accounts, which was claimed to be a donation from a member of the Saudi royal household ahead of the last general election.
Source : @ Malaysiakini