New Year’s Eve price-hike protest to draw inspiration from HK, Mexico

09-Dec-2014 Intellasia | The Malaysian Insider | 6:00 AM Print This Post

Anti-price hike movement Gerakan Turun Kos Sara Hidup (Turun) is planning another mass protest at Dataran Merdeka, Kuala Lumpur, also on New Year’s eve, to highlight the rising cost of living which has affected ordinary Malaysians.

This time around, the movement which is currently on a road show to galvanise support in Negri Sembilan, Malacca and Kuala Lumpur, planned to build up a momentum so that the interest of Malaysians would not fizzle out after the protest.

Turun chair Mohd Azan Safar said Putrajaya needed to realise what is happening in the country and that the lives of the people were not improving despite the government’s move to provide more aid.

“As we can see, there was no increase in salaries although the prices of goods kept increasing. On top of that, despite removing the subsidies which the government said was to fund the upgrading of our public transportation systems, those services are still at an unsatisfactory level,” said Azan.

“The momentum to spread the awareness has to be kept up. In fact, we are exploring more creative ways to make our stand,” he added.

Citing the ongoing pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong and the demonstrations in Mexico over the disappearance of 43 student teachers, Azan said in both countries, the organisers had used a slightly different approach to attract the masses to join their cause.

“They used art as a medium to unite people from all walks of life, especially the youngsters, to get them to come out and participate. We are exploring this idea.

“We have yet to finalise what we will do on the New Year’s Eve but it will be something new and different.”

Turun chair Mohd Azan Safar says it was irresponsible of the government to remove subsidies. – The Malaysian Insider file pic, December 5, 2014.Azan also said it was irresponsible of the government to remove subsidies and it only showed that their actions were merely cosmetic.

“Where are the rakyat’s monies which were collected through many policies that were introduced?

“The government has also reduced the petrol price and people were thinking that this was probably a move made after constant pressure from the rakyat but it was not. The government took the opportunity from the drop in oil price around the world to reduce petrol price in the country,” said Azan.

“Oil price down, petrol went down. What will happen when the oil price shoots up? We are the ones who will be burdened with it later.”

Azan was arrested on December 23 for organising a similar protest at Dataran Merdeka on December 31 last year but said that will not stop him from doing it again.

“I am championing the issues that affecting the people. There is a need to educate the public on what is really going on because at the end of the day, they are the ones who suffer,” he said.

He hopes more people will realise on what is happening now and not give up on getting their voices heard.

“The first time when we held the protest, there were many other issues that were happening at the same time. People lost focus and the interest subsequentlty died down,” he said.

He said some 10,000 people are expected to join the protest, similar to the number of those who turned up at last year’s protest.

On the possibility of joining hands with PKR’s Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli who had threatened to organise a demonstration on New Year’s Eve if Putrajaya did not reduce fuel, Azan said that he had no problems in collaborating with Rafizi.

“We are championing the same issues,” he said.

Last year’s protest saw thousands marching to Dataran Merdeka on New Year’s Eve to protest against government policies which led to a rise in prices of goods.


Category: Hong Kong

Print This Post

Comments are closed.