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HomeMalaysia NewsMassive Turnout Expected, but Limited Impact Anticipated at 'Save Malaysia' Rally Protesting...

Massive Turnout Expected, but Limited Impact Anticipated at ‘Save Malaysia’ Rally Protesting Zahid’s DNAA

Today, multiple groups, including Perikatan Nasional (PN), are uniting to stage the “Save Malaysia” rally, condemning the Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi’s discharge not amounting to acquittal (DNAA) concerning the 47 charges in his Yayasan Akalbudi trial. Scheduled for 2 pm at Masjid Kampung Baru, the rally seeks to express disillusionment among Malaysians over Zahid’s DNAA, echoing back to the 2016 Bersih rally that called for Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s resignation as prime minister amid the 1MDB scandal.

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Calls for Renewed Charges and Judicial Independence

The rally organizers demand an immediate reinstitution of charges against Zahid, emphasizing the importance of maintaining the independence of the Attorney General’s Chambers and the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission. They also stress the necessity of equal application of the law to all citizens.

Diverse Coalition Behind the Rally

The “Save Malaysia” rally is organized by the Save Malaysia Movement Secretariat, spearheaded by the Islamist coalition Ummah, allied student group Gabungan Mahasiswa Islam Se-Malaysia (Gamis), and the pro-Malay group Perkasa. It has garnered support from political parties within PN, including PAS, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia, Gerakan, and Parti Pejuang Tanahair.

Legal Controversy Surrounding the Rally

Senior Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) officials have expressed concerns that the rally does not comply with the Peaceful Assembly Act due to insufficient notice and details provided. Despite this, rally organizers maintain that they have adhered to the law by submitting the required advance notice to the police.

Mixed Reactions and Speculations

The rally has evoked mixed responses. Government officials, including Home Minister Datuk Seri Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, criticized the event, alleging disrespect to Malaysia Day by its timing. In contrast, advocacy groups like Bersih have supported the rally, citing it as an exercise of Malaysians’ constitutional right to assemble freely.

Political Analysts’ Perspectives

Political analysts foresee a substantial turnout at the rally, particularly due to PN parties’ mobilization capabilities. However, they question the rally’s potential to effect change, considering its partisan nature. While acknowledging the right to voice grievances, they suggest that the impact might be limited unless the rally becomes a recurrent event.

Economic Implications and Discouraging Investors

Analysts warn that the rally could potentially deter investors, creating a perception of political instability and uncertainty in Malaysia. This adverse image might discourage future investments, hampering the nation’s economic growth.

Calls for Patience Amid Ongoing Resolutions

Some experts argue that the rally might not serve its intended purpose, as the DNAA issue is still being addressed through established channels, including a special parliamentary committee’s inquiry. They suggest that it may be more prudent to await clarifications rather than politicize the matter through public rallies.