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  Speech (3)  by Lim Kit Siang at the Penang DAP Open House at Cheah  Association, Penang on Sunday, 10th February 2008 at 11 am:

Are Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye being fair to the people of Penang in claiming that I have been drummed out of Penang politics because of their rejection of the DAP�s political struggle for justice, freedom, equality and fair play?

Recently, I had been the victim of calumny by two Gerakan leaders, former  Gerakan President and now adviser, Datuk Seri Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and the Gerakan secretary-general and Umno favourite as the next Gerakan Penang Chief Minister, Datuk Seri Chia Kwang Chye.

Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye have accused the �Lim Kit Siang-Lim Guan Eng father-and-son� of wanting to build a �Lim� dynasty in Penang, with the former claiming that I had been drummed out of Penang and that he would ensure that the Lim Kit Siang-Lim Guan Eng father-and-son  team would again  be defeated.  Keng Yaik even alleged that  I would abandon Perak and together with Guan Eng jointly �attack� Penang.

First of all, I do not want to use the word �proud� but let me state that Guan Eng and I have nothing to be  ashamed in dedicating the best part of our lives to the betterment of the nation and people to promote democracy,  forge international competitiveness, fight injustice and inequality regardless of race, religion or region.

 Although both of us paid a heavy price for our political beliefs and convictions, this is the  expression of our love and loyalty to Malaysia!

We are not like other father-and-sons in the political arena as we are not in politics for wealth, position or  titles. 

Both Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye were conspicuously silent about other father-and-son teams particularly where one son, without any track record, could at the age of 27 embark on corporate acquisitions exceeding RM1.2 billion in a matter of months raising the question whether there had been improper use and influence of the father�s political and Ministerial position.  And both Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye are still deafeningly silent in their cowardice and opportunism!

Guan Eng had joined me in the Kamunting Detention Centre during the Operation Lalang mass arrests under the Internal Security Act (ISA)  in 1987. We were among the first of over 106 to be arrested and the last two to be released in April 1999. 

This had been my second ISA detention as the first time I was incarcerated was in 1969.  But Guan Eng had gone one step further as he was jailed in Kajang Prison for 18 months under the draconian laws of the land in defending the dignity of an underaged Malay girl � resulting in his disqualification as Member of Parliament and being barred from standing for elective office for five years.

Although justice and fair play are too luxurious a  concept and principle for Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye if they had  to survive in the carnivorous world of Barisan Nasional and Gerakan  politics, it does not mean that they are justified in spreading calumnies and falsehoods against Guan Eng and me..

I will give another recent example. On Sunday, in accusing the DAP of �pitting friends against friends� and �relatives against relatives� for its own political end, he accused me of fielding Gooi Hock Seng against his then brother-in-law Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon in the 1990 general election in the Tanjong Bungah state seat.

Let me put the record straight. I do not want to go into the details of the DAP strategy of the Battle of Tanjong 2 which decided to  field  DAP stalwarts against  the Barisan Nasional stalwarts to make a bid for Penang state power, resulting in DAP stalwarts coming out of incumbent seats to contest in more difficult constituencies and against  redoubtable Barisan Nasional candidates in order to win the necessary majority to form the Penang State Government.

Everyone of the DAP leaders in Penang took part in this collective strategy to pit the DAP stalwarts against the Gerakan and MCA stalwarts which involved fielding  Gooi Hock Seng against Tsu Koon.

I had personal  qualms when I first heard the proposal of pitting Gooi Hock Seng against Tsu Koon  but accepted it as the strategy  was presented as  a package by the strategic team headed by Gooi Hock Seng himself.

On the night the DAP slate of candidature in Penang  for the Tanjong 2 Battle was announced, I received an irate  call from Gooi Hock Seng�s wife  berating me for deliberating pitting her husband against her brother.  How could I tell her that this was the decision of her husband  and his strategic team and that it  had not emanated from me.  This was one of the cases where even as DAP Secretary-General I had to �eat dead cat�.

I am putting this record straight as I cannot allow Kwang Chye to go on a vilification and demonisation spree against DAP leaders  over another canard.

I said in Ipoh last week that I propose to defend the Ipoh Timur parliamentary seat unless higher  party and national strategic considerations require otherwise.

However, are  Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye being fair to the people of Penang in claiming that I had  been drummed out of Penang politics because of their rejection of the DAP�s political struggle for justice, freedom, equality and fair play?

Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye may not know that I have been staying in Penang for nearly  two decades.

May be an opportunity should be given to the people of Penang to express themselves clearly so that they do not have to eat a �historic dead cat� created by Keng Yaik and Kwang Chye.

The  12th general election, which should be held within the next 30 days, would provide an opportunity for the Penang voters to put to rest another Lim Keng Yaik-Chan Kwang Chye canard.

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


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