Tuesday, October 19

Hundreds hold candlelight vigil in remembrance of Bill Kayong


See (right) helping out in lighting of the candles.

KUCHING: Hundreds gathered near the 3rd Mile Wet Market last night for a candlelight vigil in remembrance of the late Bill Kayong who was murdered in Miri in 2016.

The vigil was attended by several Sarawak Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) leaders namely Batu Lintang assemblyman See Chee How and Sarawak PKR vice-chairperson Voon Shiak Ni, as well as the family members of Bill.

Bill’s brother Davey and Francis, and his widow Hashikin Hatta were also there.

Speaking during the candlelight vigil ceremony, See hoped that Bill’s murder case would be reopened again as there has been no satisfying conclusion to the case.

“Let this day be a day where we remember his struggles and what he as done for the people for the sake of justice,” he said.

This was because out of several suspects, only one man was convicted which was the shooter, said Bill’s brother Davey.

He said it was not logical for one man with no solid motive to just shoot and murder his brother.

“That man (shooter) has no relation to Bill. Then the bigger fish, the mastermind, managed to get away with it.

“We demand the case to be reopened,” he said.

Davey (fourth left) were among those attending Bill’s candlelight vigil near the 3rd Mile Wet Market, Kuching on Saturday.

Davey said non-governmental organisation (NGO) Lawyer Kamek for Change has been helping the family to try to push the case to be reopened again to the Attorney General’s Chambers in Kuala Lumpur, and they will continue to push for it.

“If other high profile cases like Teo Beng Hock and Altantuya Shaariibuu can be reopened, why can’t Bill’s case?” he said.

Bill, 43, was shot dead in his vehicle at the traffic light intersection near E-Mart supermarket in Tudan on the morning of June 21, 2016.

The murder is widely believed to be linked to his role as a native land rights activist.

In June 2017, the Miri High Court freed three of the four accused – businessman Datuk Stephen Lee Chee Kiang, Chin Wui Ching and Lie Chang Loon – from charge of abetting in Bill’s murder.

The fourth accused, Mohamad Fitri Pauzi, the shooter, was found guilty and sentenced to death on Aug 10, 2018.

Bill’s widow Hasyikin Hatta spoke of the difficulty of living a live with their two schooling children without him for four years since his death.

Some of those attending Bill Kayong’s candlelight vigil near the 3rd Mile Wet Market, Kuching on Saturday taking a group photo.

She said no matter what, the family had to carry on with life no matter how difficult it may be.

“Thank you all for your support. We have to be strong in facing whatever challenges lies ahead of us,” said Hasyikin.

Voon said with the organising of candlelight vigils every year to remember Bill, she hoped it would pressure the authorities to reopen the case.

“I hope his struggles will go on. If we don’t make noise the issue will die down. Your presence will continue to bring up the matter and his case be reopened,” she said.