Jamal's bid to torch Anwar billboard routed by heavy police presence

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Sungai Besar Umno chief Jamal Md Yunos has again failed to carry through his threat to torch a billboard calling for jailed de facto PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim's freedom, this time in Sabak Bernam.

Jamal said he had abandoned his plan after almost 50 police officers were present at the site of the billboard at the Jalan Sungai Panjang intersection, according to the New Straits Times .

Instead, he and some 30 supporters decided to lodge a police report over the billboard at the Sabak Bernam district police headquarters.

"I urge the police to investigate the installation of the billboards and the local authorities must say if they allowed it and its contents because Anwar is definitely not a political prisoner.

"These billboards could incite the people and create unrest," he was quoted as saying.

On Wednesday, Jamal, accompanied by some 80 men, had also threatened to torch a similar billboard in Ampang but later backtracked.

Instead, he put up a two-metre banner with graphic details about sodomy on the billboard.

"Anwar Ibrahim is a sodomist who has been convicted. This means he had inserted his penis into the anus of a man without consent," read the banner.

The banner was hung over the words ‘Save Anwar’ under the former opposition leader’s picture on the billboard, located at a busy intersection near the Ampang Point shopping mall.

A fracas broke out when PKR MP Tian Chua’s aide Rozan Azen Mat Rasip told the group to stop. Police personnel at the scene controlled the situation.

Anwar was in February last year jailed five years for sodomy, a charge he claimed was politically motivated.

The United Nations recognises Anwar’s incarceration as ‘arbitrary’.

"The imprisonment of a former opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim - whose detention has been ruled arbitrary by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention - is emblematic of a broader democratic malaise ," UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zaid Ra'ad said, when presenting his annual report to the Human Rights Council in Geneva earlier this month.

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