KUALA LUMPUR: A group of women rights activists submitted a petition to the Government to demand the immediate release of Bersih chairman Maria Chin Abdullah.
The group of about 300 activists called “Women for Maria” yesterday walked from Padang Merbok to Parliament to submit the petition.
They marched along Jalan Parlimen but were stopped by a police barricade halfway to Parliament guardhouse.
A few representatives, including former Bersih co-chairman Datuk S. Ambiga, former Women’s Aid Organisation head Ivy Josiah and G25 spokesman Datuk Noor Farida Ariffin, were allowed in to submit the petition.
It was received by Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim.
Maria was arrested on Nov 18, a day before the Bersih 5 rally in the city centre last Saturday.
She has been detained for 28 days under the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act (Sosma).
Maria’s sister Cynthia Chin, who was among the participants of the walk yesterday, said the family was shocked and devastated at her detention.
“My sister is not a terrorist. She does not deserve to be detained this way,” she said.
Among those in the crowd were Selangor State Assembly Speaker Hannah Yeoh, Ampang MP Zuraida Kamaruddin and All Women Action Society (AWAM) executive director Ho Yock Lin.
Outside Parliament after submitting the petition, Ambiga said the group’s efforts to free Maria would continue until she is released.