Wednesday August 8, 2012
Ambiga and Bar invited to ‘exchange notes’ with advisory committee
By LEE YEN MUN
PUTRAJAYA: Bersih 3.0 chairman Datuk S. Ambiga and the Bar Council have been invited to “exchange notes” with the independent advisory panel on the April 28 rally.
In extending the invitation, panel chairman Tun Hanif Omar said its report on the rally would not be complete without hearing from them.
A letter of invitation would be sent to both Ambiga and the Bar, who would then decide on the date of the meeting, said Hanif.
“The panel hopes to meet them face-to-face since they are key participants to what had occurred.
“The (panel's) terms of reference were very much based on the resolutions of the Bar so it's important that we exchange notes because our assignment is to just get the truth of what happened that day and how we can recommend to make the policing of assemblies better,” Hanif said after chairing the panel's 10th meeting here yesterday.
The Bar had released an interim report on the rally immediately after the event, citing instances of police brutality.
Since June 18, the panel had heard testimonies from about 50 witnesses in its investigation into allegations of police brutality during the rally.
Four witnesses testified before the panel yesterday, including two media personnel, a photography undergraduate and a policeman on duty as the ground commander during the rally.
The media personnel involved had suggested that some members of the police had acted on emotions after hearing initial reports that some of their men had died in the rally, said Hanif.
“We are getting closer to understanding the scenario of the day,” said the former Inspector-General of Police.
Hanif said he also hoped to convene a round-table discussion with security experts from Pakistan, Britain, Canada and the United States within a month's time to discuss crowd control measures which could be adopted by Malaysia as a standard operating procedure.