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  Media Statement by Lim Kit Siang in Parliament on Friday, 8th February 2008:

Chinese New Year messages by Barisan Nasional leaders this year the best evidence that Malaysian nation-building after 50 years has gone very wrong and even lost its  way

If more evidence are needed  to illustrate that after 50 years, Malaysian nation-building has gone very wrong and even lost its way, the latest proofs are provided by the  Chinese New Year messages by the Prime Minister and UMNO President, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, the Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting, the Energy, Water and Communications Minister and Gerakan adviser, Datuk Seri Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and even the Works Minister and MIC President, Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu.

Abdullah said that  as the Prime Minister, he was committed towards creating a Malaysian community that was dynamic, progressive and lived in peace and harmony and strongly upheld the Malaysian cultural traditions.

"I will continue to redouble efforts so that we can continue to move forward and gain the respect of the international community in all aspects," he added.

If a national opinion poll is conducted, can Abdullah get a majority from the (i) Malaysian Chinese and (ii)  the Malaysian populace as a whole to  believe in the Prime Minister�s Chinese New Year pledge, especially when there is unprecedented  widespread skepticism and cynicism of his  commitment to create a Malaysian community that is �dynamic, progressive and lived in peace and harmony and strongly upheld the Malaysian cultural traditions�.

In fact, I have no doubt that if Malaysians are asked whether the Malaysia  community has become more �dynamic, progressive and lived in peace and harmony and strongly upheld the Malaysian cultural traditions� in the past four years, the overwhelming majority will give a loud and  negative �No�  �  what with the coming of somnabulant premiership, the rise  of Little Napoleons and Little Mullah Napoleons (LMNs), declining international competitiveness, endemic crime and increasing frequency of incidents like bible-banning, body-snatching and insensitive Islamist  manifestations like the half-way halt in the construction of the world�s tallest Mazu statue in Kudat, Sabah.

Ong Ka Ting said that all Malaysians must be of one heart and think positively to preserve national unity.  I don�t think even MCA leaders and members believe that the MCA President was talking sense, especially when he had been conspicuously silent on the latest body-snatching case in Seremban although it was initially taken up by the MCA (which collected RM12,000 legal fees) and the outrage of the jailing of the first doctor in Malaysia, Dr. Basmullah Yusoff  over a technical offence  under  the Private Healthcare Facilities and Services Act (PHFSA).

Lim Keng Yaik in his Chinese New Year message called on Malaysians to be moderate, liberal and progressive in discussing and solving various issues and dealing with all forms of extremism and racism so as to speed up the creation of Bangsa Malaysia.

Is this all empty sloganeering, especially when Keng Yaik is ending his more than two decades as a Federal Minister with a Cabinet which must be described as the least moderate, liberal and progressive in the nation�s 50 year history, as otherwise how could he explain the following developments which would be completely unthinkable in the eras of  the first three Prime Ministers, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak and Tun Hussein:

  • An Islam Hadhari which reaffirms the unconstitutional �929 Declaration� of Tun Dr. Mahathir  that Malaysia is an Islamic state and  jettisons the 1957 Merdeka social contract on a cardinal cornerstone of Malaysian nation building � that Malaysia is a democratic, multi-religious and secular nation with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic state;
  • The continued ravages on national and international confidence in the independence, integrity and quality of the judiciary, compounded by the scandalous exposes of the Royal Comission of Inquiry into the Lingan Tape and the RCI conduct;
  • The worst crime and corruption situation in the nation�s history, with no one, whether citizen, visitor, tourist or foreign investor could feel safe from being a victim of crime in the country;
  • The extension of the 20-year New Economic Policy to 50 years;
  • The rejection of the Bangsa Malaysia by powerful voices and groups in Umno; and
  • The rearing of the ugly head of religious intolerance and extremism, marked by the rise of Little Mullah Napoleons  (LMNs) as a greater terror than Little Napoleons in the public sector.

Samy Vellu�s Chinese New Year message is the most unbelievable of all. He called upon Malaysians to appreciate the Chinese community�s contribution to the nation and that the Chinese community towards nation-building was never in doubt. 

It is most strange that this call  emanates from the MIC President and  the sole Malaysian Indian Minister for over 28 years, and who could not get the government to appreciate and recognize the contribution of the Indian community to nation-building � resulting in the long-standing political, economic, educational, social, cultural and religious polarization of the Malaysian Indians reducing them into a new underclass in the country.

This is why Samy Vellu is fighting for his political life and facing pressures from  Umno leaders that he step down as MIC President and as a candidate in the next general election as  has become too great a liability to the Barisan Nasional and its efforts to win Indian votes!

The Barisan Nasional leaders should have co-ordinated among themselves before issuing their Chinese New Year messages or on other national festivities so that they do not become rich sources to show not only a somnambulant government, a half-past six Cabinet but an administration whose right hand does not know what its left hand is doing.

* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman


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