KUALA LUMPUR: The Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (Suhakam) will be monitoring the conduct of the authorities and participants during the Bersih 4.0 rally slated for this upcoming weekend.
"This year, the expected number of people is probably far more than Bersih 1, 2 and 3, and the Commission has decided that we will monitor the gathering," said Suhakam commissioner James Nayagam (pic) at a press conference on Monday.
Nayagam said that around 20 Suhakam officers hace volunteered to be part of the team that will monitor the activities of Bersih 4.0.
"We will also be monitoring in Sabah and Sarawak as well, where they are having similar gatherings," he said.
He said that Suhakam will be observing the conduct of the authorities as well as the conduct of the people gathering at the rally.
"We will observe whether they (the authorities) fulfil their obligations in terms of ensuring there is a peaceful gathering," said Nayagam.
"We expect the authorities to facilitate traffic, not use force, and to uphold the right of peaceful assembly and to not hinder the participation or ban the assembly.
"We also expect the authorities to protect those who are assembling," he said, adding that the police should keep in mind that there is a possibility of children and old folks being part of the gathering.
Nayagam said that they will also be monitoring the participants of the rally to make sure they adhere to whatever agreement that is made with the authorities.
"The participants must adhere to the laws and not take the laws into their own hands. Do not provoke or damage. Be responsible to the issues they want to highlight," he said.
Nayagam said that Suhakam is a neutral party and will draw up a report on the rally.
"We will monitor the rally which we will deduce in writing in the form of a report which will be presented at a Commission meeting where we would study the report and have a plan of action on how we want to respond," he said.
James said that his team is ready to monitor the rally and has equipment ready to take note of the proceedings over the two days.
"We are ready, and we will proceed," he said.