KUALA LUMPUR: Some 50-odd Universiti Malaya (UM) students have set up camp outside the university’s student affairs department, in protest of disciplinary action taken action against students who organised a talk by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
The students, who are part of the Occupy UM movement, had been camping outside the UM entrance since Wednesday in protest of what they say is an attack against academic freedom.
Earlier this morning, Occupy UM staged a peaceful march to move their camps to the student affairs department, located next to the Perdanasiswa complex.
Following the students’ call to revoke the disciplinary action taken against seven of their peers, two representatives from the student affairs department met with the students and requested to be “considerate” in their protest.
“We’re not stopping you (from protesting), but don’t block the entrance. Just move your tents to the side,” said one university personnel.
The students also demanded to meet with deputy vice-chancellor (student affairs and alumni) Prof Datuk Dr Rohana Yusof, but were told that she was away for a meeting.
As of 12pm, students remained steadfast in their new Occupy UM site, saying that they will not leave until their demands are met.
Students present also say that they are taking turns to man the camp site, as they are still attending classes.
Eight students were initially hauled up by the university for organising a talk by opposition leader Anwar in October – Abraham Au, Syamimi Munira, Khairul Anwar, Haw Yu Hong, Adam Fistival, Khairol Najib, Safwan Shamsuddin and Fahmi Zainol.
While Abraham was subsequently cleared of all charges, the rest were slapped with disciplinary action ranging from fines to suspension.-The Star