KUALA LUMPUR, July 13:
The Negara-Ku coalition, comprising 68 non-governmental organisations (NGO), sees no legal impediment to use the title of the country’s national anthem as the coalition’s name.
In an immediate response to local daily Utusan Malaysia’s weekly column today titled, Agenda Ambiga, Negara-Ku patron Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan said there was no legal impediment on the name’s usage.
The Malay daily had also urged the Registrar of Societies (RoS) to reject the coalition’s formation on the grounds of using the national anthem as its name.
“We have examined it ourselves and can see no legal impediment to our use of the name Negara-Ku (not Negaraku),” Ambiga said to The Rakyat Post today, adding that should RoS act, they must do so within the boundaries of the law.
Utusan’s “Bisik-bisik Awang Selamat” column today claimed that the former Bersih co-chairperson had a hidden political agenda to serve the Opposition by forming the coalition.
Ambiga responded by saying that Negara-Ku indeed had an agenda with those seeking to criticise it by simply trying to deflect from the pertinent issues plaguing the country.
“It is an agenda for unity, peace and harmony. Everyone who loves this country should support this agenda.
“Those who criticise it are merely trying to deflect from the pressing issues of racism and extremism that threaten the fabric of our nation.
“What is their agenda, I wonder?” the former Bar chairman asked.
She went on to clarify that the movement, founded by Pertubuhan Ikram Malaysia deputy president Zaid Kamaruddin, did not concern the patrons involved, rather it is for the people.
“It is a movement of the people set up by concerned citizens and NGOs and chaired by the respected Zaid Kamaruddin.
“We accepted the honour of being patrons because the cause is timely and most worthy,” she said.
The International Women of Courage Award 2009 recipient went on to state that citizens should not remain on the sidelines while several parties continued to stoke racial and religious tension instead of putting a stop to it.
The Negara-Ku coalition isled by patrons Ambiga, national laureate Datuk A. Samad Said and former Suhakam vice-chairman Tan Sri Simon Sipaun. It was launched on Thursday and aims to foster unity among Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, gender or creed.
The coalition includes the All Women Action Society (Awam), Aliran Kesedaran Negara (Aliran), Malaysian Indian Transformation Action Team (Mitra), Lingkaran Islam Traditional (LIT) and Asalkan Bukan Umno (Abu).