KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 2 — Umno leader Datuk Jamal Yunus’s “Red Shirts” will gather outside news portal Malaysiakini’s office here on Saturday, as a surrogate for its rally at Dataran Merdeka that was rejected by Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL)
The Sungai Besar Umno division chief said the event was to protest against the news portal that was implicated in alleged foreign interference in Malaysian politics by US magnate George Soros’s Open Society Foundation.
“For November 5 (rally), it’s going to be held at Jalan Tandang, in front of Malaysiakini’s office.
“We are changing the venue because we couldn’t get any place in Kuala Lumpur and we know that Malaysiakini is part of those who received fund from OSF,” he told Malay Mail Online today.
He said foreign funding of local groups must be investigated for possible money laundering.
Jamal then added that he will survey the area outside Malaysiakini’s this evening. He did not state the targeted turnout for the Saturday protest, but previously claimed he would mobilise 300,000 to counter the Bersih rally.
Jamal also said, however, that the protest outside the news portal did not mean his “Red Shirts” will be absent from Kuala Lumpur on November 19 if the Bersih 5 rally proceeds.
“If they don’t cancel their plan, we are ready, if they cancel (their plan) we will cancel ours,” he said when adding that he respected DBKL’s decision to reject their application.
He added that they would also inform the police either today or tomorrow on the change of location.
Bersih 2.0 chairman Maria Chin Abdullah separately said the group will negotiate with authorities on possible venues for the rally.
“I will answer tomorrow, I’m going to meet DBKL and and Dang Wangi police tomorrow,” she said.
Earlier today, DBKL rejected both applications from Bersih 2.0 and the Red Shirts movement to hold protests at Dataran Merdeka.
Several police reports have been lodged against Bersih, urging the police to investigate the authenticity of leaked minutes purportedly from an OSF meeting that detailed its efforts to intervene in Malaysian politics.
The document also reportedly said news portal Malaysiakini’s video arm KiniTV had also received funding from the Malaysia Programme.
Malaysiakini said that the grant was used to produce the Realiti Sarawak and Sekilas Bumi Kenyalang programmes and that it only constituted a small portion of its revenue while Bersih 2.0 chairman Maria Chin Abdullah said the organisation has not received any money from OSF since mid-2011 onwards. – Malay Mail