Liow Tiong Lai should revisit his “Citizens” National Day Video and reaffirm that provided voters, including MCA members, follow their conscience in pursuit of Malaysian Dream, he does not mind which political party they support

I am surprised that after the MCA Deputy President, Datuk Wee Ka Siong’s self-directed and self-acted “drama” alleging the possibility of DAP Secretary-General and Chief Minister of Penang Lim Guan Eng contesting against him for the Ayer Hitam parliamentary seat in Johor, the MCA President Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai also craved the limelight and produced his own self-directed and self-acted “drama” that I was going to contest against him in Bentong parliamentary seat in the 14th General Election.

Guan Eng accused Wee of being dishonest, reminded him to stop lying, as this was only the fourth day of the Chinese New Year.

Guan Eng asked Wee not to use him (Guan Eng) to promote himself, and asked when he (Guan Eng) ever said that he would contest in Ayer Hitam.

Wee responded with an abject admission that he had been misquoted by MCA-owned newspaper The Star, and that he had never mentioned Guan Eng by name.

Had Liow similarly been misquoted by Star and Bernama when he claimed the possibility that I would contest against him in Bentong and that he was ready to face me in Bentong.

Like Guan Eng’s question to Wee, can Liow cite chapter and verse as to when I had mentioned the possibility of my contesting in Bentong as this had never entered into my radar of possibilities for the 14th General Election.

Like Wee in the case of Guan Eng, has Liow to make use of me to promote himself?

Liow also launched into a ferocious attack against me while claiming that he was confident of the voters’ support as he had done good work as MP in Bentong constituency since 1999.

Liow’s election results in Bentong are most interesting and revealing. In the 1999, 2004 and 2008 General Elections, Liow won Bentong with five-figure vote majorities, viz: 10,715-vote majority in 1999; 16,839 in 2004 and 12,549 in 2008. However, in the 2013 General Election, when facing DAP environmentalist candidate, Wong Tack, Liow was “lucky” to win with 379-vote majority.

Would Liow have won if the Bentong had not changed from a constituency with Chinese voters as the largest ethnic voting group, as in 2004GE when the racial breakdown of the Bentong electorate was of 48.6% Chinese, 40.5% Malays, 9.4% Indians and 1.4% Others into one where the Malay voters are the largest ethnic voting group, with the racial breakdown of the Bentong electorate in the second quarter of 2017 - Malays 46.1%, Chinese 42.4%, Indians 9.0% and Others 2.6%.

MCA should be celebrating its 69th anniversary in a week’s time on Feb. 27. It should highlight the history created by the present MCA leadership where the top MCA leaders like the MCA President, Deputy President and Secretary-General had to be elected to Parliament and appointed into the Cabinet based on UMNO’s Malay votes by contesting in constituencies where Malay voters are more than Chinese voters.

In Ayer Hitam, the parliamentary constituency of MCA Deputy President and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong, the voter racial breakdown in the second quarter of 2017 were Malays 57.6%; Chinese 38.3%; Indians 3.9% and Others 0.2%.

When Wee contested in the Ayer Hitam parliamentary seat in the 2004 General Election, the racial breakdown of the voters in the constituency were 55.5% Malays, 40% Chinese; 4.3% Indians and 0.3% Others.

In Tanjong Malim, the parliamentary constituency of the MCA Secretary-General and Second Minister for Trade and Industry, Datuk Ong Ka Chuan, the current racial breakdown of the electorate is Malays 55.4%, Chinese 25.8%, Indians 13.2% and Orang Asli 5.6%, as compared to 2008 General Election when Ong first contested in the constituency – Malays 51%, Chinese 31%, Indians 15.1% and Orang Asli 2.9%.

Is MCA representing the Chinese in Barisan Nasional or are MCA Ministers and leaders representing UMNO to the Malaysian Chinese?

I would advise Liow to revisit his “Citizens” National Day Video and act as a brave citizen of Malaysia and not as a cringing MP and Minister solely dependent on UMNO’s Malay votes.

In the “Citizens” video, Liow the Minister admitted to Liow the citizen: “The last ten years have been hard for everyone. I know we haven’t done enough”.

Was Liow the Minister speaking from the heart? If so, could he list out the things the MCA Ministers and leaders had not “done enough” and would now remedy?

The video tried to present the dilemma and malaise Malaysians had been feeling for the past decade or so, the great disappointment over the state of the nation - rampant corruption, political instability and a crippling economy.

Had Liow and the two MCA Ministers ever raised the 1MDB scandal in Cabinet since the “Citizens” video?

Would Liow support me that Parliament next month must address the nation’s infamy and ignominy as a “global kleptocracy” as Members of Parliament, regardless of political party, cannot continue to pretend that the 1MDB scandal does not exist?

In the “Citizens” video, Liow the politician came face-to-face with Citizen Liow, who angrily asked him, "What do you want?" to which Liow replied, "I know, you think I'm irrelevant, nothing I do is good enough. Of course I'm hurt by that, but now is not the time to discuss that."

Liow the Minister said: “I’m only here to ask you to not give up on this country.

“Running the country isn’t easy. But the starting point of any solution is never give up hope.”

Liow the Minister said:

“The dream of Malaysia is beautiful and worthy of our perseverance.

“I believe every citizen and leader wish for a better Malaysia. Provided you follow your conscience, I don't mind which party you support. I earnestly urge you to, once again, believe in Malaysia."

Liow must state clearly and unequivocally whether he is sincere in what he said in the video, that provided Malaysians, including MCA members, follow their conscience in their Malaysian dream, he does not mind which political party they support and vote in the 14th General Election.

I call on Malaysians, including MCA members, not to lose hope, and in the 14GE to unite with all Malaysians, whether MCA, UMNO, Gerakan, MIC or even PAS members, for the achievement of the Malaysian Dream by voting for a change of Federal Government in Putrajaya for Malaysia to take the first step to become a normal democracy – an integral part of the Malaysian Dream.

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah