Malaysia protests against PM enter second day

Kuala Lumpur, Aug 30 (IANS) Protests in Malaysia calling for Prime Minister Najib Razak to resign over a financial scandal and demanding constitutional reform continued for a second day on Sunday, the media reported.

The protests, organised by civil rights group Bersih, started on Saturday morning in three Malaysian cities — Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu.

Authorities estimated the crowd size on Saturday at around 29,000 people but Bersih organisers said the organising group said 200,000 took part, Channel News Asia reported.

Protestors have said they would continue to occupy the streets until just before midnight.

Former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad made a surprise appearance late Saturday, urging the cheering protestors to “carry on”. He has backed calls for Najib to quit.

Najib is accused of siphoning $700 million from a sovereign wealth fund into his personal accounts. The prime minister has denied the claims.

The rally has been declared illegal by Najib’s government and the police.

“Those who wear this yellow attire… want to discredit our good name, scribble black coal on Malaysia’s face to the outside world,” state-run news agency Bernama quoted the prime minister as saying.

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