Media statement by Lim Kit Siang in Kuala Lumpur on Tuesday, 21st September 2010:
Who is the second UMNO/BN Minister who dare to publicly declare that he/she is Malaysian first and race second in keeping with Najib’s 1Malaysia policy?
I am surprised that in the past 24 hours, the other Ministers have not rallied behind the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz who had courageously declared that he is Malaysian first and Malay second.
Who is the second UMNO/Barisan Nasional Minister who dare to publicly declare that he/she is Malaysian first and race second in keeping with Najib’s 1Malaysia policy?
It has taken Nazri more than six months to respond to my challenge in Parliament in March this year to all Cabinet Ministers to declare that they are Malaysian first and race second.
Surely, Malaysians do not have to wait for another six months before another Minister plucks up sufficient courage to follow Nazri to declare that he/she is Malaysian first and race second.
I have given notice to ask the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak a specific question on the commitment and loyalty of Ministers and top civil servants to his 1Malaysia concept when Parliament reconvenes for the 2011 Budget meeting beginning on Oct. 11.
My question to Najib in the first week of the Parliamentary meeting next month read:
To ask the Prime Minister why the majority of Cabinet Ministers and top civil servants still do not accept the 1Malaysia concept of being Malaysian first and race second after 18 months, how he proposes to unite the entire administration under this concept.
It is precisely because Najib’s 1Malaysia concept has not found overwhelming support from his own Cabinet and government that there is so much back-stabbing, back-sliding, obstruction and even sabotage to the 1Malaysia policy from within the government.
A good illustration is the unequivocal statement by Najib just before National Day of zero tolerance for racism, but the Prime Minister’s writ does not seem to run in the Education Ministry which is under the charge of the Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, infamous for his “I am Malay first, Malaysian second” declaration.
As a result, more than three weeks have passed but no action has yet been taken to discipline and punish the two school principals, one from Johore and the other Kedah, who had made racist slurs against the students in their schools last month.
What is even more shocking, the school principal in Kedah has returned to his posting although the parents and the Malaysian public have been given to understand that he would be transferred away – as if nothing serious had happened, making a total mockery of Najib’s “zero tolerance for racism” declaration.
All eyes will be on the Cabinet meeting tomorrow – not only on whether the Cabinet would take a stand to demand ensure that the two school principals who had made racial slurs against their students in school should be severely punished as an example to all education officer, but whether the Cabinet would at long last give full endorsement to Najib’s 1Malayia policy with every Cabinet Minister declaring support for the 1Malaysia policy to create a Malaysian nation where every Malaysian regards himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor