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Home Ministry bans Bersih, red-shirts from holding gatherings

The Registrar of Societies (ROS) today confirmed that the Bersih and red-shirts groups are not registered under the Societies Act 1996, said Deputy Prime Minister Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also the home minister, said ROS director-general Mohammad Razin Abdullah felt that the two groups should register under the Societies Act to be gazetted as societies.

Ahmad Zahid said that as the Bersih and red-shirts groups were not registered under the Societies Act, the activities they organised were banned.

"As was decided by me in the Dewan Rakyat yesterday, Bersih 5 and the red-shirts are disallowed from holding any gatherings.

"This is the official order from the Home Ministry and enforcement will be undertaken by the police," he told reporters after launching the Home Ministry Innovation Day celebration in Putrajaya today.

The red-shirts had planned a gathering for Saturday at Dataran Merdeka and Bersih 5, on Nov 19.

Ahmad Zahid said Kuala Lumpur City Hall had issued an official letter disallowing the two groups to make use of Dataran Merdeka for their gatherings.

"The decision of KL City Hall is final. As such, the decision of the police is in tandem with that of KL City Hall and all instructions must be adhered to," he said.

Meanwhile, Mohammad Razin explained that if Bersih and the red-shirts did not register with ROS, then ROS could take legal action under the Societies Act.

"It is learnt that Bersih is registered under the Companies Act through the Companies Commission of Malaysia and the commission can take enforcement action," he said.

Earlier, in his speech, Ahmad Zahid instructed all agencies and departments under the Home Ministry to be prepared at the optimum level to face the annual floods later this year.

"We cannot avoid the floods, but we can prepare ourselves well to face it," he said.

Ahmad Zahid praised enforcement officers and personnel for their sacrifice in leaving their flood-stricken families to help others affected by the floods.

- Bernama

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