KUALA LUMPUR, 4 May 2009: The Abolish ISA Movement or Gerakan Mansuhkan ISA (GMI) has challenged Majlis Permuafakatan Ummah (Pewaris) to a debate on the Internal Security Act (ISA).
E NaliniGMI secretary E Nalini said GMI organised the debate, titled Debat ISA: Halal atau Haram, to challenge Pewaris’s view that the ISA is needed to defend Islam in the country.
“There will be one representative from each side, and GMI will be represented by Hulu Klang state assembly[person] Saari Sungib, a former ISA detainee who was detained under the law twice,” said Nalini at a press conference today.
She said Saari, a committed advocate of the anti-ISA movement, has extensive knowledge on the ISA from the Islamic perspective.
“We sent a letter to Pewaris on 25 April but they didn’t respond so we called them up on 30 April and they confirmed that they are joining the debate,” said Nalini.
GMI also stressed in their press statement that the ISA, which they term a draconian and cruel piece of law, is against Islamic principles that preach justice and recognise that a person is innocent until proven guilty.
They hoped an open debate would enable the public to understand and evaluate the issue critically.
Norlaila Othman At the press conference, GMI committee member Norlaila Othman urged the traditional media to report fairly on the debate.
Norlaila is the wife of Matsah Satray, who has been detained without trial under the ISA at Kamunting for over seven years now.
GMI said they will only learn who the Pewaris representative will be when the two groups meet at Putra World Trade Centre tomorrow to discuss the debate.
The debate will be held on 9 May from 3-5pm at the Petaling Jaya Civic Hall.