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Media Statement by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Friday, 29th January 2010: 


Establish opposition-headed Parliamentary Select Committee on 1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme to exercise parliamentary oversight if Najib, Tsu Koon and Idris are serious about major government reforms

I embarrassed Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon, the KPI Minister and Chairman of Pemudah and Datuk Idris Jala, the Second KPI Minister and CEO of Pemudah when together with DAP MP for PJ Utara Tony Pua and MP for Bukit Bintang Fong Kui Lun, I visited the 1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme (GTP) Roadmap exhibition just after noon.

Apart from Idris, the GTP Roadmap exhibition staff and the media, there was hardly a soul from the public. Reporters said that the venue was as empty yesterday except for the official launching ceremony of the GTP Roadmap by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak.

It is almost ten months since Najib became Prime Minister, and apart from his dazzling “1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now” slogan and concept, Malaysians have not felt and could not perceive that there is any meaningful change in their daily lives.

The 261-page “1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme” would make an impressive thesis on nation-building and government transformation but the national challenge today is not who can produce the best-sounding thesis but have the political will to implement meaningful changes in all aspects of national life.

In fact, there could not be a worse time for the launching of the 1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme when for the past month, the Malaysian image of a united, harmonious and progressive nation had suffered prolonged battering in the international media because of the failure of find a quick solution to the “Allah” controversy.

What a united, harmonious and progressive 1Malaysia are we projecting when it is reported by Malaysian Insider yesterday that a forum for some 800 civil servants was the occasion for the spouting of intolerant, incendiary and inflammatory speeches, even to the extent of resurrecting the threat and spectre of another “May 13 Incident”?

This is the Malaysian Insider report yesterday:

Muslim overseers blame Christians for ‘Allah’ row

By Syed Jaymal Zahiid

PUTRAJAYA, Jan 28 — Islamic academics and administrators have blamed Christians for provoking Muslim anger by challenging the ban on their use of the word “Allah”.

Politicians, particularly those from Umno/Barisan Nasional (BN) were also blamed for failing to defend Islam against perceived threats.

Panellists at a forum organised for civil servants here by the Islamic Development Department (Jakim) suggested that the Barisan Nasional (BN) government was lax in defending Islam, after the High Court ruling allowing a Catholic weekly to use “Allah” in its Bahasa Malaysia section.

Zamihan Mat Zin from the Institut Latihan Islam Malaysia blasted politicians for being vocal only on Malay rights but doing little for Islam.

“Some politicians are ever so vocal when it comes to defending Malay rights but when it comes to their religion, they are quiet. What is the use of defending Malay rights if our religion is not protected?” he told about 800 civil servants at a special forum here today.

The pertinent question is why was there a special forum for civil servants to make them the target of such divisive, intolerant, incendiary and inflammatory speeches where one of the speakers, Zamihan even raised the spectre of another “May 13 Incident” as in the following Malaysian Insider report:

But Zamihan went as far as suggesting that a repeat of the May 13 racial riots was possible if the Christians, which to him practised extremism in the matter, did not back down.

“Who knows, there might be a Feb 13?” said Zamihan.

Other speakers at the incendiary forum for civil servants included Mohd Aizam Masod, an officer from Jakim’s research department and Mahammad Nasir Disa, deputy chief of Syariah Research Department of the Attorney-General’s office.

Najib should explain firstly, whether it is right and proper, and has become government policy, for civil servants to be involved in such intolerant and incendiary forums; and secondly, what action the Prime Minister would take against those who are so irresponsible as to openly threaten “another May 13” like Zamihan at the forum for civil servants.

If 1Malaysia is to be meaningful, then all must agree that those who undermined inter-racial and inter-religious peace and harmony by threatening “another May 13”, regardless of their race, religion or political affiliation, must be treated as enemies of 1Malaysia and the sternest action must be taken against them.

Will there be such a consensus in the 1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme? Will this be discussed and decided at the next Cabinet meeting?

I have grave doubts whether the many beautiful-sounding proposals in the GTP Roadmap would be implemented or whether the GTP Roadmap would end up like the National Integrity Plan 2004-2008 which has become a worthless piece of document after raising such high hopes among Malaysians six years ago!

If the government is serious about the GTP Roadmap, let Najib, Tsu Koon and Idris seek the consent of the Cabinet on Wednesday for the establishment of a parliamentary select committee on 1Malaysia Government Transformation Programme to exercise parliamentary oversight to ensure that the beautiful-sounding proposals for government transformation do not remain on paper.

Such a Parliamentary Select Committee on GTP Roadmap should be headed by an Opposition MP and I would love to head such a parliamentary select committee if Najib, Tsu Koon and Idris are really serious about the GTP Programme.

However, I am not insisting that I should be the Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee on GTP Roadmap, as it will come as a great surprise if Najib, Tsu Koon and Idris are prepared to raise the proposal at the Cabinet next Wedneday – and even greater surprise if the Cabinet is brave and bold enough to endorse such a proposal.

*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor



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