Thursday June 21, 2012
Watchdog group gets RM351,200 bill from City Hall
PETALING JAYA: Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL) wants electoral watchdog group Bersih to pay compensation of RM351,203.45 for losses and costs incurred during the Bersih 3.0 demonstration in the city centre in April.
It served a letter of demand dated June 18 to Bersih co-chairman Datuk S. Ambiga and steering committee member Maria Chin Abdullah.
Among the compensation sought were payment for DBKL officers’ meals and overtime claims, which were estimated at RM45,000 and RM174,240 respectively.
DBKL is also claiming RM16,702.50 for damage done to trees and RM57,850 for landscape damage.
The letter, signed by DBKL director-general Datuk Salleh Yusup, said Bersih should submit the compensation within two weeks or face legal action.
It added that Bersih would also have to pay another RM100 for the cost of the legal notice.
Salleh said the April 28 rally went out of control and caused chaos in the city centre as well as damage to public property.
Bersih confirmed on its website that the letter had been served on Ambiga and Maria Chin.
A massive crowd gathered on that day to call for free and fair elections.
However, things turned ugly at around 3pm when police barriers at Dataran Merdeka were breached, leading police to fire tear gas and water cannons on the protesters.
The Government has filed a suit against Ambiga and nine others for RM122,000 over damage to vehicles during the rally.
Filed on May 15, the suit claimed that 10 cars, three motorcycles and two water cannon trucks owned by the Government were damaged when the rally turned chaotic.
It claimed that the vehicles were kicked and pelted with stones, water bottles and rocks by rally participants, costing the Government RM122,000 in repairs.