Sep 11, 07 6:18pm
The policeman, who discharged his firearm during the clash in Kuala Terengganu over the weekend, had fired a total of four shots. Terengganu police chief SAC I Ayub Yaakob revealed this when contacted this evening.
He also clarified that the shooter was a 25-year-old general duty policeman and not Federal Reserve Unit (FRU) personnel Azmi Hussein, 35, as reported previously.
The policeman, who was said to have opened fire in self-defence after being set upon by an armed mob, was identified as Constable Abdul Wan Aziz. As a result of the incident, two men, Suwandi Abdul Ghani, 37 and Muhamad Azman Aziz, 21, sustained gunshot wounds to the chest and neck respectively. Both are reported to be in stable condition.
Wan, on the other hand, received several stitches following the attack and is currently on medical leave. He has since filed a police report and the case has been classified as ‘attempted murder’.
The police are also investigating to determine if there was any negligence on the constable’s part. Meanwhile, Ayub said FRU personnel Azmi is still undergoing treatment for injuries sustained during Saturday’s clash between the police and opposition supporters. Azmi was hurt when the angry crowd pelted police personnel with bottles, stones and other objects.
In total, four policemen, including Wan and Azmi, were injured. Different versions Since the incident, there have been different versions reported by the media as to the identity of the shooter and the number of shots fired.
The violence erupted over the denial of a police permit for a forum organised by the opposition-backed election watchdog Bersih. The opposition have also claimed that the clash was instigated by police agent provocateurs but Ayub had denied this.
“We never provoked anybody, my instruction was clear, we will not react if the people do not do anything,” he told malaysiakini yesterday.
He also said the application for the permit was rejected because the site of the proposed forum, Pantai Batu Buruk, was deemed unsuitable. The area is a popular tourist spot. Furthermore, he said the application did not contain any plans on how the organisers intended to control the crowd and traffic in the area.
“They (the organisers) filed an appeal. I then called them for negotiations, but they only sent a messenger. I waited till 6pm in my office (on Saturday),” he added.
Desperate act As for the policeman discharging his weapon, Ayub said the former, who was on crowd control duty that night, had acted out of desperation. “After ushering the women, children and elderly into a nearby building to avoid them from getting hurt, he was suddenly confronted by a group of 20 men carrying sticks.
“They called him SB (Special Branch) and began hitting him,” he added. Ayub said the policeman suffered a blow to his eye causing it to bleed. He then fell to the ground but the mob allegedly did not relent and continued to assault him.
“He had no choice, he used his left hand to fend the blows and with his right hand, he reached for his gun. Because his face was bleeding profusely, he couldn’t see properly as well.
“He was still on the ground, his elbow was on the ground when he fired into the air. He did not even know that someone had been hit (by the shots),” he added.
Twenty-three people were arrested following the clash and 18 have since been released.