Speech (2) by Lim Kit Siang at the DAP Air Puteh Branch dinner at Han Chiang Secondary School Penang on Sunday, 16th August 2009 at 9 pm:
Malaysia should be celebrating the 52nd National Day in two weeks’ time with Najib’s signature theme of 1Malaysia but the reverse is taking place with the 1Malaysia concept rubbished almost daily by Umno leaders competing to exploit the race and religious cards
In two weeks’ time, Malaysians will be celebrating our 52nd National Day with a new Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak marking his fifth month in office.
The 52nd National Day celebrations should centre on Najib’s signature theme of 1Malaysia but unfortunately, the reverse is taking place with the 1Malaysia concept being rubbished almost daily by Umno leaders who are competing with each other in exploiting the race and religious cards.
Two days ago, UMNO Youth led by its leader Khairy Jamaluddin, launched a vitriolic attack on Pakatan Rakyat, alleging that a vote for PAS is a vote for DAP and a betrayal of Islam. Umno leaders accuse the DAP as anti-Islam while among the Chinese and Indian voters, MCA, Gerakan and MIC allege that a vote for DAP is a vote for PAS and a vote for an Islamic state. Meanwhile, in the past week, Umno divisions are being mobilized all over the country to support the Deputy Prime Minister and Umno Deputy President Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yasin in his accusation that Parliamentary Opposition Leader and PKR chief Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is a “traitor of the Malay race”!
Can all these lies and falsehoods against the Pakatan Rakyat parties be the ingredients for the fulfillment of Najib’s signature theme of 1Malaysia? Of course not, as the very opposite of a very divided, segmented and polarized Malaysia can be the only result from such irresponsible politics of race and religion by UMNO and Barisan Nasional leaders.
It is most sad, shocking and outrageous that after promulgating his 1Malaysia theme, Najib does not have the political will to check Umno and Umno Youth leaders from going on a rampage to compete with each other in exploiting the race and religious cards which are in essence an entire repudiation of Najib’s 1Malaysia signature theme.
It is also outrageous and a shame that the Ministers and leaders from MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP and the other Barisan Nasional component parties dare not speak up in Cabinet and the Barisan Nasional to demand a halt to such irresponsible exploitation of race and religious cards by Umno and Umno Youth leaders, with the support of the Umno-controlled mass media like the Utusan Malaysia, as they make a total mockery not only of 1Malaysia but their very political relevance in BN and Malaysian politics.
Will there be any Minister from MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP or any other BN component party who would dare to speak up to demand a halt to such irresponsible exploitation of the race and religious card at Wednesday’s Cabinet meeting so that Najib’s 1Malaysia signature theme will not be reduced to a joke when Malaysians celebrate the 52nd National Day on August 31?
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor