KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 19, 2016:

An application to hold a rally protesting against the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) this Saturday has been rejected by Royal Malaysian Police (PDRM).

Dang Wangi police chief Asst Commissioner Zainol Samah said the application notice submitted by the organiser on Jan 12 was not approved due to a failure to present an authorisation letter from Kuala Lumpur City Hall (DBKL).

According to him, any organiser who wished to conduct any rally had to abide by the Peaceful Assembly Act 2012, which required that the venue landowner’s authorisation was obtained.

“In this case, the organiser should get the authorisation from DBKL first, before submitting the notice.

“The meeting between the organiser and the police yesterday also suggested that they switch the venue to Padang Merbok for the purpose of public safety,” he said at a press conference at Dang Wangi police headquarters.

However, Zainol said that the organiser refused to change the venue because the proposed area was unlikely to attract the public’s attention, unlike Dataran Merdeka.

The protest rally, organised by non-governmental organisations (NGOs), namely Bantah TPPA and Kongres Rakyat, expected to have a turnout of more than 20,000 participants. It was to be held from 2.30pm till 5pm.

Zainol added that action would be taken if any of the participants created chaos during the assembly.

It is known that participants will gather at Masjid Negara, Masjid Jamek, Jalan Raja Laut and areas close to Maju Junction Mall before heading to Dataran Merdeka via public transport.

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