Media statement by Lim Kit Siang in Kuala Lumpur on Thursday, 30th September 2010:
Would Najib dare to revamp his Cabinet to ensure that only Ministers who publicly declare undivided loyalty to the 1Malaysia concept to build a nation where every Malaysian regard himself/herself as Malaysian first race second have a place in government?
The weak-kneed Cabinet decision on the latest anti-1Malaysia offence of the Biro Tata Negara (BTN) is a great disappointment and shame and the greatest disservice to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia concept.
In the first place, why was the announcement of the Cabinet decision to ask the Chief Secretary to investigate the latest racist remarks of a Biro Tata Negara (BTN) official made by the MIC Minister for Human Resources Dr. S. Subramaniam and not by the Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who had chaired the Cabinet meeting during Najib’s absence?
Is it because the controversy over BTN’s latest offence against Najib’s 1Malaysia concept is regarded as a trivial matter not serious enough to warrant the personal attention and concern of the Deputy Prime Minister?
Secondly, the juxtaposition of the pronouncement by the Gerakan President and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon on the same day, warning against over-reaction in race disputes, seems to be a message on behalf of Umno leaders not to take too seriously the latest infraction of the BTN – serving only to undermine public confidence that much is to be expected of the Cabinet decision, especially bearing in mind the 48-day government inaction over the two school principals for their incendiary, racist and insensitive statements against students in school.
In fact, Tsu Koon seems to be speaking the same language as Perkasa which has claimed an overreaction with the issue “blown out of proportion” over the racist and derogatory remarks of BTN deputy director Hamim Hussain at a closed-door Umno Puteri meeting in referring to the Chinese and Indian communities as “Si Mata Sepet” (squinty-eyed) and “Si Kaki Botol” (alcoholics) respectively.
Thirdly, in failing to consider whether BTN should be dissolved, Cabinet has done a great disservice to 1Malaysia concept propounded by Najib.
This is not the first time that the BTN has proven that it is not fit to be an agency entrusted with the responsibility to instill patriotism among civil servants and undergraduates as it has emerged as the greatest enemy to Najib’s 1Malaysia policy by propounding the narrow and unconstitutional concepts of Malay supremacy, holding to the highly biased, prejudiced and jaundiced view that non-Malays are “kaum pendatang” whose loyalty to Malaysia are to be doubted.
In fact, one could say without fear of contradiction that the greatest concentration of racists in government are to be found in the BTN, and this is why the failure of any government action against the BTN is an immediate reflection on the hollowness of Najib’s recent declaration of “zero tolerance for racism” just before National Day and his United Nations speech calling on the moderates in the world to unite against the extremists!
It is evident that Najib’s Cabinet is incapable of upholding and defending the Prime Minister’s 1Malaysia slogan and policy.
Would Najib dare to revamp his Cabinet to ensure that only Ministers who dare to publicly declare undivided loyalty to the 1Malaysia concept to build a Malaysian nation where every Malaysian would regard himself or herself as Malaysian first and race second would have a place in government?
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor