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Media conference statement by Lim Kit Siang in Miri on Monday, 11th April 2011 at 12 noon: 

Najib’s 1Malaysia campaign has been “transformed” into a 1T-Shirt 1-Tupperware Circus in two years

Since last night, Datuk Seri Najib Razak has not only abandoned his duties as Prime Minister of Malaysia for a consecutive period of six days, he has also instructed his whole Cabinet of Ministers to do the same and to camp in Sarawak for the state general elections until polling day on Saturday.

Clearly Najib has lost confidence in the ability of the Sarawak Chief Minister, Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud to secure the election results desired by the Prime Minister.

But this has another far-reaching national implication - transforming the Sarawak state general election from a state into a national contest, putting on the line the Barisan Nasional’s national policies and record as well as the Prime Minister’s programme, personal popularity and political reputation.

The two issues voters of Sarawak are being asked to decide on Saturday are: firstly, at the Sarawak level whether “Peh Moh” should go, not in two, three or five years’ time but on Saturday, April 16, 2011 itself; and at the national level, whether to end UMNO’s political hegemony in Malaysian politics to give way to the new politics of freedom, justice, accountability, transparency and good governance spearheaded by Pakatan Rakyat.

Najib’s signature policy is the 1Malaysia policy. In a matter of two years, Najib’s 1Malaysia policy and concept suffered two fatal blows.

Firstly, when Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin turned the 1Malaysia policy into a farce by declaring that he is “Malay first, Malaysian second” when I challenged him in Parliament to declare his stand in March last year – totally in contradiction to the 1Malaysia objective to create a Malaysian nation where every Malaysian will regard himself or herself as Malaysian first and race, religion, geographical region or socio-economic status second.

The second fatal blow to Najib’s 1Malaysia policy is its “transformation” and degradation into a “1T-Shirt 1-Tupperware” circus – as evident by Najib’s start of the six-day campaigning for the Sarawak state general elections in Kuching last night.

This was what happened according to two online reports, The Malaysian Insider and Malaysiakini:

Even with the bussing of people from various neighbouring constituencies into Kuching South City Hall’s indoor stadium, only a thousand were seen in it.

Each participant were given a 1 Malaysia t-shirt to wear to signal unity and flags to wave at BN government leaders as they made their way into the stadium.

Accompanying the BN chairman were the five Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) candidates, and political bigwigs like Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon and Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein.

After the prime minister followed the red carpet trail leading into the hall to the sounds of hoots and whistles from the white-shirt supporters, hundreds were seen streaming out, choosing to opt out of listening to his speech.

Instead, they were seen loitering around the stadium complex, chatting and feasting on the hamburgers and mineral water that were handed out.

Even as Najib’s function kicked off, large numbers were seen lounging in the buses and vans that had ferried them into the venue.

When the prime minister began his speech, large groups of people, garbed in the 1 Malaysia t-shirts, decided to stream out of the hall.

(“BN troubled as Pakatan rally draws more support” - The Malaysian Insider 11.4.11)

Chaos erupted at the MBKS indoor stadium last night immediately after Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak left the rally venue as people jostled to get hold of goodie bags containing Tupperware brand containers.

As some 2,000 participants at the rally were streaming out of the stadium, hundreds crowded around part of the entrance, grabbing goodie bags that were being distributed.

The bags contained a poster of Najib and either a water tumbler or a small food container of Tupperware fame.

As the rush for goodies grew out of hand, workers were forced to relocate some of the boxes of goodies away from the entrance.

As soon as the boxes touched the floor, dozens of people, many of them elderly and children, ripped opened the boxes and carried with them whatever they could.

In the mad scramble, many people fell. At least one elderly lady was seen rolling on the floor, hanging on to her goodie bag.

The scene left many journalists and policemen gasping in disbelief.

Some who were more patient were content to wait until after the big scrum was over before collecting their share of the goodie bags or boxes of biscuits.

(“Mad scramble for Tupperware mars PM's do” – Malaysiakini 11.4.11)

It is a most shameful spectacle – the degeneration of Najib’s 1Malaysia concept to unite Malaysians into a 1T-shirt 1-Tupperware circus!

Najib’s suspension of the Federal Cabinet and mobilisation of all the Cabinet Ministers to campaign in the Sarawak state general elections have also presented Sarawakians and Malaysians with a curious political spectacle – SUPP President Tan Sri Dr. George Chan and the SUPP leaders waiting to be saved by MCA’s Dr. Chua Soi Lek and Gerakan’s Dr. Koh Tsu Koon!

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



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