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How Felda mobilised 10,000 for ‘red shirt’ rally

Published:  |  Modified:

Answers provided to Parliament have given tantalising clues on how Felda mobilised 10,000 settlers for the ‘red shirt’ rally in Kuala Lumpur.

According to DAP's Kulai MP Teo Nie Ching, the government agency that helps rural poor open up new settlements held a rally in conjunction with Malaysia Day celebrations on Sept 16.

The settlers were told that Felda was holding the rally in the capital city as part of a community programme to encourage patriotism and instilling gratefulness among the settlers over their good fortune.

"However, as is publicly known, Sept 16 this year was the red shirt rally,” said Teo.

"Was the Felda settlers rally purposely held on the same day to boost the numbers of the red shirt rally?" she asked.

The total number of Felda settlers who joined the rally was estimated to be 10,000, according to the parliamentary reply, she said.

This means that about 10,000 Felda settlers joined the red shirt rally, she surmised. Many of the settlers were transported to Kuala Lumpur in buses.

About RM1mil spent

Teo also lambasted government-backed Village Development and Security Committee (JKKR) and the Coalition of Women's Movement (GPW) for giving RM925,000 to fund the ‘Felda rally’.

"That money should have been used for the public good, not for political purposes…," she said.

Felda settlers also have no reason to be grateful, she said, as the Felda Global Ventures (FGV) shares have dropped from RM4.45 per unit in 2012 to RM1.93 per unit.

"They should actually be organising a protest against Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's government that have caused them to lose as much as RM197 million.

"Felda settlers should be angry about the sheer drop in share prices, not grateful," she said.

The red shirt rally on Sept 16 was purportedly held to strengthen Malay unity but it was marred by racial incidences.

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