The office that houses the Bersih 2.0 secretariat has been raided by police. Police officers arrived about 12.30pm, according to Maria Chin Abdullah, who heads the NGO Empower. Empower is a member of Bersih 2.0, a coalition of NGOs which has come under intense pressure to call of the July 9 rally in support of electoral reform. The office is in Section 4, Petaling Jaya.
Maria, who was in Parliament House at the time, said she was told the police had turned up without a warrant. A source said the police have recorded the identity card numbers of employees.
"They are searching the premises and counting the number of Bersih T-shirts," the source said briefly before being stopped from taking the call.
"When they arrived, they were aggressive and tried to break (the door) with a cutter."
The 10-member police team, from the Selangor police contingent headquarters, was headed by one ASP Rosli. They have also recorded the MyKad number, name and telephone number of each of the 20 journalists camped outside the Empower office. They are also counting the leaflets found on the premises.
At a press conference in the Parliament lobby earlier, Maria said: “I was just informed that the police are taking statements from the staff, we have no other information." She challenged the inspector-general of police to prove that they have committed a crime and stop “such intimidation”.
Maria said 95 people have been detained to date for wearing the Bersih t-shirt and handing out leaflets on the rally.
“This is a basic human right, it's is our right to assemble peacefully and we have been stressing that it will be a peaceful march. We are not going out to create chaos as we have been accused."
Probe under Police Act
Lawyer Latheefa Koya, who is at the Empower office, said the police had refused to show a search warrant to employees.
"They said they would pecah masuk (break in) if not allowed in, so the staff let them in," she told reporters.
"The investigation is under Section 27(5) of the Police Act. We do not have a list of objects they are seizing."
Section 27(5) regulates assemblies, meetings and processions, in relation to the absence of a police permit.
Polis serbu, gelidah sekretariat BERSIH 2.0