teoh beng hock and yong vui kong

both young men… one is dead… one is going to die soon…

but of course we hope that yong vui khong will not die. that all the petitions and campaign to get his death sentence abolished, will be successful.

ok so yesterday, attended two events – the ‘malaysians for beng hock‘ forum and the ‘say sorry day‘ at speakers square, penang.

the forum at han chiang college, was very well attended. full house with many people standing behind and at both sides. i think many came to see teoh lee lan, beng hock’s sister. alas… she did not turned up. what a disappointment as i too had wanted so much to see her in person. anyway, the forum was good. as lee lan can’t be present, they show a video of her, addressing us, in mandarin. brief translation was done of what she said in the video.

basically she talked about beng hock’s case at first, about najib’s promise that he ‘will not leave any stones unturned’, about pornthip. she also mentioned about the evidence produced by MACC – the suicide note.  she said that how can MACC keep the note for so long? and she also said because of this, it made her suspect, who knows, what other evidences (that show TBH was killed) MACC with-hold.  she hit out at the judiciary too. in the end she appeal to all of us to fight justice with her and her family. although i don’t understand mandarin, but i can feel her pain and frustration as she talked.

first speaker was ramakrishnan, aliran president. he talked mostly about teoh beng hock (TBH) case, and also on the ‘comedy in action‘ during the last inquest where the MACC lawyer made a fool of himself.  rama also called for a royal commission. these are the 3 points i remember he made:
“najib said he will leave no stones unturned to solve this case but now so many stones had been turned already and yet…”
“the lawyer demonstrate how to strangle oneself. how i wish he succeeded.”
“the lawyer asked pornthip if she had ever try jumping off a building – how i wish someone had asked him to demonstrate how to jump off a building.”

nora murat, from amnestry international malaysia, was the next to speak. she spoke more on laws, regulations, human rights, the institutions.  she received several applause when she made some points e.g.
“we don’t trust the police anymore. we run away when we see the police.”
“we are the boss. we must show them that they have to respect human rights.”

like rama, nora also said a royal commission should be set up and she stressed on the forming of the royal commission should be very transparent. the last point, i thought was very good, when she said:
“you have to speak up. when you speak up, you create awareness and awareness will bring action… so it all began with YOU!”

dr toh, who spoke next, said he was over-whelmed with the huge turnout. he said that once lee lan expressed her concern that interest in the TBH case seems to be dwindling but now with the huge turnout here, she should be happy to note that we still care, we are still interested.

dr toh talked mostly about the anger we felt at the injustice towards the TBH case. he was also glad that this ‘malaysians for beng hock’ group was started and the group is focusing on ‘a torture  free society‘.  he mulled the thought of whether can an anti-torture act be passed in parliament. “in malaysia, people get detained, questioned, tortured, then died!” he said that to applause and someone shouted “malaysia boleh!”.

there was a Q&A time. one man was skeptical of forming a royal commission, saying look at what happened to the royal commission for the lingam tape case – nothing! rama responded with some explanation.

someone was mentioning about something “we cannot change it… unless we change the government”. then suddenly everyone in the crowd roared “change the government!” and shouted and clapped.  rama even went on to say BN is a rotten government, we must change the rotten government.

ok, that’s about the TBH forum. after the TBH forum, i went to speakers’ square and was surprise to see the ‘malaysians for beng hock’ group there (who were at the forum) were there too. they have some say about TBH and even bought TBH t-shirts to sell to the people at the speakers’ square.

after their talk, andre loh, with his guitar, lead the people into singing michael jackson’s ‘heal the world’.  then it was followed by a short sketch by suaram. six people formed a circle. one of them was the ‘govt’ and he scolded all the other 5 who represented ‘the media’, ‘the radio’, ‘namewee’, ‘yong vui kong’, ‘a university student’.  scolded them for what they did. as they were being scolded, they squatted down. then after all had squatted down, one by one slowly rose up, at the same time saying something (why they did what they did), which ended with “minta maaf” (i’m sorry).

after the sketch was over, dr toh kin woon gave a short speech, in english and mandarin. he talked about yong vui kong.

suaram, then showed to the crowd, with 3 laptops, a short video clip about yong vui kong. after the clip, they presented the crowd with a small beautifully wrapped gift box, where it was explained, that is is for us to write on a piece of paper the name of the persons, whom we want to say sorry to or want to forgive and place it inside the box.  after we had say sorry to them, then we can remove the paper.

you can see more photos at my facebook album:
malaysians for beng hock forum
‘say sorry day’ at speakers’ square
(click ‘next’ to see more)

read the report from sembang-sembang group and from malaysiakini.

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