Media statement by Lim Kit Siang in Petaling Jaya on Monday, 6th September 2010:
Is Najib prepared to put his 1Malaysia policy to the test by leading a nation-wide "Say No to Racism" campaign starting with errant Umno leaders, government officials and Utusan Malaysia?
Although the Director-General of Education Tan Sri Alimuddin Mohd Dom has issued a circular dated August 26 to all school principals and teachers warning of action to be taken for racist remarks in schools, the absence of action against the two school principals in Johore and Kedah who had made racist remarks stands out like a sore thumb.
More than three weeks have passed and both principals had not yet been referred to the police, let alone the Attorney-General’s Chambers.
This is totally at variance with the “Zero tolerance for racism” belatedly made by the Prime Minister two weeks after the deplorable incidents involving the two school principals.
The Prime Minister should realize that the escalation of the rhetoric of race and religion makes a total mockery of his 1Malaysia slogan, one reason why there is so little national enthusiasm for the Natioal Month theme of “1Malaysia – Transforming the Nation”.
Is Najib prepared to give flesh to his “Zero tolerance for Racism” declaration and put his 1Malaysia policy to the test by leading a nation-wide “Say No to Racism” campaign starting with errant Umno leaders, government officials and Utusan Malaysia?
The Cabinet at its meeting this Wednesday could not make a more useful decision than to launch a nation-wide “Say No to Racism” campaign to end the escalation of racist bigotry and religious extremism which has increasingly invaded the public space and consciousness.
The “Say No to Racism” should be a truly national one, rising above party politics, leveraging on the fact that the overwhelming majority of Malaysians regardless of race or religion abhor racial and religious extremism and mobilizing the good sense and goodwill of the majority of Malaysians to take a clear and unequivocal stand to denounce racism in any form.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor