PETALING JAYA: Datuk Rizal Mansor has questioned whether Bersih 2.0 chairman Maria Chin Abdullah and the election pressure group are truly non-political.
“Would Maria Chin and Bersih now claim that Bersih is non-partisan and non-political?” asked Rizal who is personal assistant to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor.
“Is calling for the people to reject a certain political party part of Bersih’s so-called elections reform agenda?”
Rizal said Bersih had failed to live up to its name when it asked DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, who has been charged with two counts of corruption, to launch Bersih 5 in Penang.
He said this came after many had called for Lim to step down, including former Bersih chairman Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan and Selangor DAP chairman Tony Pua.
“As Bersih is clearly political and partisan, it is wise for all religious leaders – including a certain Bishop in the news – to refrain from joining or openly asking others to join Bersih’s activities,” he said without naming the bishop.
An online news portal reported on Friday about Malacca-Johor diocese Bishop Bernard Paul who vowed to join the Bersih 5 rally on Nov 19.
It was reported that the clergyman went on Facebook to encourage others to join the rally.
On June 30 this year, Lim claimed trial to a charge of using his position as a public servant to obtain gratification for himself and his wife by approving an application by a company to convert agricultural land for residential development during a state planning committee meeting on July 18, 2014.
Lim also denied another charge of using his position to obtain gratification by purchasing his house from businesswoman Phang Li Koon at below market value in 2015.
Earlier on Oct 18 this year, Rizal also criticised Maria Chin for practising double standards.
He supported her for lodging a police report over doctored images showing her being held by the throat by a man wielding a knife.
However, he also accused her and Ambiga of keeping silent when Bersih supporters displayed “mock graves” for Najib and Rosmah during the Bersih 4 rally in August last year.