Speech by Lim Kit Siang at the SSS (Support,
Sympathy and Solidarity) Candlelight Vigil for DAP MP for Seputeh Teresa
Kok demanding her immediate release from Internal Security Act held at
Ipoh Timor Garden East, Ipoh on Thursday, 18th September 2008
Call on top MCA leadership to apologise
and make amends for Teresa Kok's ISA detention for failure of MCA
Ministers to demand in Cabinet yesterday for Teresa's immediate release
and for Teresa's arrest as it was based on a police report by a key MCA
operative in Puchong
The top MCA leadership should apologise and
make amends for DAP National Organising Secretary, MP for Seputeh and
Selangor Senior Exco Teresa Kok Suh Sim's detention under the Internal
Security Act (ISA) for two reasons:
· Failure of the MCA Ministers to demand in
the Cabinet meeting yesterday for the immediate and unconditional
release of Teresa Kok under the ISA; and
· For Teresa's ISA detention as it was based on a police report by a
key MCA operative in Puchong.
On Tuesday, the MCA Central Committee called
for the release of Teresa under ISA, wanting her to be investigated
under other laws and charged in court if there was evidence.
However at the weekly Wednesday Cabinet meeting yesterday, the four MCA
Ministers failed to uphold and implement the MCA Central Committee
resolution that Teresa should be released immediately under the ISA, as
they failed to place Teresa's ISA detention as a specific item on the
Cabinet agenda and to ask for a Cabinet decision for the immediate
release of Teresa.
In fact, apart from some mumblings and grumblings at the Cabinet
meeting, the MCA Ministers never tried to force an issue to demand
Teresa's immediate release under the ISA at the Cabinet meeting
yesterday although the majority of the Ministers were privately opposed
to Teresa's detention.
It is clearly most unacceptable and dishonourable for the MCA leadership
to stage a double-faced political farce – on the one hand, pretending to
yield to public opinion by taking a stand in the newspapers calling for
Teresa's release yet on the other, fully submitting to Umno political
hegemony in the Cabinet by the failure and cowardice of the MCA
Ministers to force an issue at yesterday's weekly meeting to get Teresa
released immediately and unconditionally.
If the full weight of national and international opinion can force the
release of senior Sin Chew Daily reporter Tan Hoon Cheng after 18 hours
of unlawful ISA detention, why can't the four MCA Ministers take a stand
in the Cabinet yesterday to secure the release of Teresa after five days
of arbitrary, unjust, undemocratic and unhygienic ISA detention?
What is the use of having four MCA Ministers in Cabinet if they are
incapable of or impotent in accomplishing the simplest of things – the
immediate release of Teresa from ISA when she should never have been
arrested in the first place?
The failure of the MCA Ministers to get the Cabinet yesterday to release
Teresa – or even to place Teresa's detention as a specific agenda for
Cabinet meeting and decision yesterday – is even more inexcusable when
it was a key MCA operative in Puchong whose police report making false
allegations against Teresa over the azan controversy last Thursday was
the trigger for her ISA detention the next day on September 12 at 11.18
Is the MCA leadership going to sack this key MCA operative in Puchong
for making the false and mischievous report against Teresa or is the MCA
leadership taking the stand that Teresa should not be detained under the
ISA but should be charged under other laws in the country over the false
azan allegations against her?
Is the MCA leadership going to haul up the four MCA Ministers to show
cause why they had failed to uphold and implement the MCA Central
Committee decision in the Cabinet yesterday to secure Teresa's immediate
Who would have any doubt that if the UMNO Supreme Council on Tuesday had
taken a decision that Teresa should be released immediately under the
ISA that she would have walked out of ISA detention as a free Malaysian
latest by Wednesday?
Why should there be any difference between the powers and influence of
the MCA Central Committee from the Umno Supreme Council, unless the
former is just subservient and subordinate to the latter?
Kit Siang, DAP
Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor