Media Statement by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling
Jaya on Thursday, 4th September 2008:
Any Najib apology for the rank racism of
BTN indoctrination courses?
It is not just Bukit Bendera Umno division
chief Datuk Ahmad Ismail who is guilty of rank racism with his
derogatory, offensive, insensitive and chauvinistic reference to
Malaysian Chinese as “pendatang”, “penumpang” and untrustworthy
Malaysians, the Biro Tata Negara (BTN) also purveys such extremism and
un-Malaysian prejudices and communal poison.
Deputy Prime Minister and Deputy Umno
President Datuk Seri Najib Razak has
apologised on behalf of Ahmad Ismail to non-Malays “if it caused
Is Najib next to apologise for the rank
racism of BTN in purveying similar communal poison in its indoctrination
I have received the following letter from an
outraged parent at the trauma his daughter underwent in one such BTN
indoctrination course for JPA scholars.
The BTN’s racist indoctrination course is a
great disservice to both Malay and non-Malay JPA scholars as well as to
Malaysian nation-building, the Merdeka social contract, the Malaysia
Agreement, Rukunegara, Vision 2020 and Bangsa Malaysia.
It is time that the BTN’s racist
indoctrination courses be exposed and all true Malaysians, both Malay
and non-Malay, are invited to expose such extremist excesses and
communal poison in BTN indoctrination courses as a prelude for its total
revamp if not abolition!
The email from an outraged parent follows:
BTN’s racist and divisive
Now that Najib has apologised to
non-Malays for Ahmad’s statement, I would like to bring to the
attention of Najib the pain endured by the young non-Malay JPA
scholars who are required to go through a five-day Biro Tatanegara
programme at certain camps in the country. To be fair, many moderate
Malay students too cried and were hurt by some racist comments made
by the instructors.
As part of the course, which is mandatory
before they are sent overseas, all non-Malays are segrgated and
given lectures on the history of the country and how the immigration
of the Chinese and Indians had taken place. And finally how the
Chinese and Indians were given citizenship. The Malays too had their
own similar sessions.
The instructors blatantly told them that they should not question
the rights and privileges of the Malays as the non-Malays should be
thankful that they were given citizenship status and a place to stay
on their soil. My daughter together with the other non-Malay
students was shocked and went back to their dormitories depressed.
And to the Malay students, the instructors told them to be aware of
this fact and not to mix too freely with the non-Malays.
A Malay friend of my daughter came back
crying to the dormitory saying that she could not take the racist
position taken by the government authority. My daughter then began
questioning the bumiputra policy and was disgusted with such blatant
indoctrination. This incident has also made the students harbour
anger and resentment. Their fear for the authorities and losing
their scholarships made them keep their cool. I am not exaggerating
here - ask all the JPA students to write in anonymously and you will
know the truth.
These are young minds being polluted with
racism. Tens of thousands of students have gone through this
programme and more will be attending it in the future. So can you
blame them when they exhibit their racist tendencies when in
authority? How could the JPA allow such a syllabus for the cream of
the nation, who will one day be entrusted to implement government
So, will Najib take responsibility for the
racist syllabus and subsequently the racist remarks and apologise to
the tens of thousands of students and parents who were hurt by such
hurtful remarks? Of course knowing the BN government, it will deny
this. Believe me, this is the ABSOLUTE truth.
My call to Najib is to immediately probe into
this claim with the help of a multi-racial team of officers from
Suhakam BUT please maintain the anonymity of the young children who
have everything to lose. This blatant racism practised and preached
by the Barisan Nasional government must stop immediately.
Is there any Barisan Nasional leader, whether
UMNO, MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP or any of the Sabah and Sarawak component
parties, who will endorse the call for the disbanding of the BTN for
rank racism and working against the cause of Malaysian nation-building?
Kit Siang, DAP
Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor