The Information Communications and Culture Ministry has denied allegations that the authorities deployed mobile communication jammers during the April 28 Bersih 3.0 electoral reform rally.
"It is not true that the government blocked (cellular) communications," said the ministry in a written reply to a parliamentary question from DAP's Batu Gajah parliamentarian Fong Po Kuan yesterday.
The ministry instead blamed the huge numbers of people concentrated in such a small area during the rally in Kuala Lumpur’s Dataran Merdeka vicinity as the cause of communications glitches.
The ministry claimed that too many people had tried to access the network at once, thus causing the overworked cell transceivers to reject the extraneous signal load.
"In general, cellular telecommunications systems does not have the capacity to support the voice and data communications on a large scale like what occurred during the Bersih 3.0 rally."
In her question, Fong had asked the ministry to state why was cellular communications was disrupted during the rally, and if it is true that communications was intentionally blocked to deny communication between those who attended the rally.
Journalists and protesters on the ground during Bersih 3.0 had reported acute cellular communications failures during the rally.
Some had accused the government of deploying military-grade mobile signal jammers with photographs of such devices mounted on vehicles allegedly parked around Kuala Lumpur during the gathering distributed online.
[More to follow]