A coalition of environmental activists, including electoral reform group Bersih, have banded together to advocate for sustainable development and are organising a rally in Kuantan, set for Saturday.
Perhimpunan Hijau 109 or the Green Assembly, is led by a local activist group protesting against the Lynas rare earth refinery in Gebeng, not far from Kuantan.
The national steering committee of the event, which is made up of 10 NGOs, expects some 10,000 people to turn up, what with the promised attendance of popular Bersih chief Ambiga Sreenevasan (left).
Speaking to reporters in the Parliament lobby today, the committee's representative, Bang Seet Ping, said the event aims to encourage the people to take responsibility for their future.
"I am just an ordinary person. I want to protect my home, my community and my children. There are many others who share my sentiments and aspirations, who want a better future for their children," said Bang, a mother of two.
"Many of our lawmakers are not environmentally literate. I hope they hear us loud and clear. Environmental issues must be a key issue that voters take into consideration in the next general election," Bang said.
The event will kick off with the rising of the sun at Pantai Balok. An endorsement of the Earth Charter - a declaration of fundamental ethical principles for sustainable development - will be made.
The objective of the event, said Bang, is to propel "a change in our way of life, change in how society works, how decisions are made, and how businesses are conducted".
Also lending their support to the Green Assembly, are the residents of Kampung Bukit Koman in Raub, who are fighting to stop a nearby gold mining operation that is said to be linked tocyanide poisoning.