Women turn purple at toxic politics

Muzliza Mustafa

Women form a tide of purple in the march from Maju Junction to Pertama Complex in Kuala Lumpur, today. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Najjua Zulkefli, September 10, 2017.

WOMEN of all walks of life painted the town purple today in a show of unity against toxic politics.

About 1,000 of them marched from Maju Junction shopping mall towards Pertama Complex at 5.45pm against injustice against women, violence in politics, and toxic politics.

Former prime minister’s wife, Dr Siti Hasmah Mohamad Ali and her daughter Marina Mahathir, led the Purple Walk, which participants included G25 leader Noor Farida, lawyer Ambiga Sreenavasan, PKR president Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, and Pantai MP Nurul Izzah Anwar

The event was organised by Bersih chairman Maria Chin Abdullah and G25 member Noor Farida Ariffin.

Maria said the walk was to show that women were united against the current state of Malaysian politics.

“It is mainly about unfulfilled promises… it is just not about toxic politics, but about issues of rape, violence against women. We have been fighting for amendments to the law for 30 years and until now, we are still talking about it,” she said.

Dr Siti Hasmah Mohamad Ali and Marina Mahathir, lead the Purple Walk with 1,000 participants. – The Malaysian Insight pic by Najjua Zulkefli, September 10, 2017.

Maria urged women to claim more places in Parliament to pursue agendas that would benefit the community.

“We have only 20 women MPs in Parliament, which is about 10%, whereas neighbouring countries like Indonesia are already hitting above 25% (of women MPs),” she said.

Maria said the failure of elected representatives to act on crucial issues was in itself an act of toxic politics.

She said “the very fact that the government is not responding to very important issues, such as children being married at the age of 12 and below” was toxic politics.

“If we elect you, you have to listen to the people’s voice. If you don’t, you are practising politics that we cannot identify with – and that is toxic.

“And it is also toxic that increasingly, violence is being used, increasingly repressive laws are being used, to suppress the voices.”

Women had to get rid of toxic politicians in the next election, she urged. – September 10, 2017.

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