At FORUM-ASIA, we employ a range of strategies to effectively achieve our goals and create a lasting impact.

Through a diverse array of approaches, FORUM-ASIA is dedicated to achieving our objectives and leaving a lasting imprint on human rights advocacy.

Who we work with

Our interventions are meticulously crafted and ready to enact tangible change, addressing pressing issues and empowering communities.

Each statements, letters, and publications are meticulously tailored, poised to transform challenges into opportunities, and to empower communities towards sustainable progress.

Multimedia Stories
publications

With a firm commitment to turning ideas into action, FORUM-ASIA strives to create lasting change that leaves a positive legacy for future generations.

Explore our dedicated sub-sites to witness firsthand how FORUM-ASIA turns ideas into action, striving to create a legacy of lasting positive change for future generations.

Subscribe our monthly e-newsletter

Malaysia: Bersih 4.0, A Peaceful Assembly for A Democratic Reform in Malaysia

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin

(Bangkok, 31 August 2015) – The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) expresses its solidarity with the people of Malaysia for the organisation of β€œBersih 4.0”. The two-day peaceful gathering, which took place on 29-30 August 2015 in three cities in Malaysia, as well as in different places across the world, called for: free and fair elections; a transparent government; a better economy; the right to dissent; and a strengthened parliamentary democracy system.

Bersih, which means β€œclean” in Malay, is a coalition of 84 non-government organisations calling for an electoral reform in Malaysia. Joined by about 200.000 people, Bersih 4.0 specifically demanded the resignation of Prime Minister Najib Razak who has been buffeted by corruption scandals involving state fund 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB).

β€œWe commend the fact that the two-day rally went peacefully and proceeded without any violence. However, declaring Bersih 4.0 an illegal assembly based on Section 9 of the Peaceful Assembly Act[1] is groundless as this provision has been declared unconstitutional by the Court of Appeal in April 2014[2],” stresses Evelyn Balais-Serrano, the Executive Director of FORUM-ASIA.

β€œThe right to freedom of peaceful assembly, as guaranteed under Article 10(1)(b) of the Federal Constitution, is indispensable in a democratic society. Bersih is an important part of a wider process of reform in Malaysia, which is why the Government of Malaysia should listen to and address the legitimate demands of the people and work together to improve the country,” says Sevan Doraisamy, the Executive Director of Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM).

β€œThe Malaysian government must respect rather than suppress its people when exercising their fundamental rights to freedom of expression and peaceful assembly. It should have done so as well in late July 2015 when it arrested democracy activists, Adam Adli, Syukri Razab, and Mandeep Singh,” adds Evelyn Balais-Serrano. β€œAs Chair of the ASEAN, Malaysia should set an example to the other member states in respecting human rights and democracy to pursue a β€˜caring, people-centered ASEAN community’.”

About FORUM-ASIA:Β 

FORUM-ASIA is a Bangkok-based regional human rights group with 47 member organisations in 16 countries across Asia. FORUM-ASIA has offices in Bangkok, Jakarta and Geneva. FORUM-ASIA addresses key areas of human rights violations in the region, including freedoms of expressions, assembly and association, human rights defenders, and democratisation.

For further inquiries, please contact:

  • Betty Yolanda, Country Programme Manager, FORUM-ASIA, [email protected], +66 994250010
  • Pimsiri Petchnamrob, East Asia Programme Officer, FORUM-ASIA, [email protected], +66 (0)813405409

[1] http://www.straitstimes.com/asia/se-asia/malaysian-police-say-bersih-4-rally-is-illegal

[2] http://www.themalaysianinsider.com/malaysia/article/court-acquits-pkr-rep-rules-10-day-notice-in-public-assembly-act-unconstitu

Click here to download the statement (PDF)