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Press Statement By Lim Guan Eng In Petaling Jaya On 5.2.2008: 

Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Should Ban Racially-based Parties And Opening Up UMNO to All Races To Prove His Sincerity In Disavowing Racial Politics And Not Wanting A Government Made Up Of One Race 

MCA’s over-reaction that the Chinese community would lose all influence in government, by responding to DAP’s appeal to the voters to express their disapproval of UMNO’s poor governance and political dominance in government by reducing MCA’s votes or seats by 10%, is no different from a person faking death to avoid debt-collectors. Malaysians were owed a debt of promises by BN that the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi failed to deliver, and the people must demand full repayment. The people must not be tricked by such faking of death but demand a complete accounting of BN’s non-performance and poor governance. 

DAP had expected MCA’s over-reaction as if losing 10% of their present 31 parliamentary seats which comes out to 3 seats is the end of the world. However no one expected the Prime Minister to ape MCA’s childish and irresponsible antics by saying that he would be sad to see a one-race government if MCA or Gerakan were to lose badly. How can losing 3 seats or only 10% be seen as losing badly and result in a one-race government when MCA would still have 28 parliamentary seats, double that of DAP? 

If the Prime Minister is sincere in not wanting a government dominated by one race then, he should disavow racial politics by banning racially-based parties and opening up UMNO to all races. After 50 years of Merdeka, the Prime Minister should stop projecting himself as a Malay leader first but as a Malaysian leader first and a Malay leader second. 

MCA’s use of statistics to show that if DAP were to succeed in reducing MCA’s parliamentary seats by 10%, MCA’s strength would be reduced by 30% is a classic example how statistics can be misused to lie, deceive and mislead. Despite such worries, MCA and UMNO is confidently talking about winning back two parliamentary seats from DAP in Perak(Ipoh Timor and Ipoh Barat) and all four parliamentary seats from DAP Federal Territory(Seputih, Cheras, Kepong and Bukit Bintang). 

Clearly the Prime Minister, MCA & Gerakan are trying to frighten the voters to vote for MCA/Gerakan despite the fact that a vote for MCA/Gerakan equals to a vote for UMNO. UMNO’s political dominance is unhealthy and harms democracy as well as damage the enjoyment of fundamental liberties and fulfillment of human potential. Worse of all by continuing to divide Malaysians between first and second-class citizens, bumis and non-bumis, the spirit of national unity and racial interaction is slowly disappearing day by day. 

No Malaysian whether Chinese, Malay or Indian can accept that a first generation Malaysian like Selangor Menteri Besar Datuk Mohd Khir Toyo, whose father is an Indonesian, has more rights and status than a non-Malay non-bumi whose families have been here hundreds of years. No Malaysian poor wants to be deceived that they are poor because the other communities are rich when the poor can see that poverty is colour-blind. Everyone believes that all religions teaches us to do good and have common values that are universal. For UMNO to discriminate the people based on race and that one religion is dominant and superior over others is perpetuating the British colonialists’ policy of “divide and rule” to stay in power. 

Malaysians should strive to break UMNO’s political dominance that has only engendered rampant corruption, escalating crime and inflation inflicting financial hardships on Malaysians sharpening the income inequality between the rich and poor until Malaysia has the worst income disparity in South-East Asia. By continuing to support UMNO’s political dominance and UMNO’s allies in MCA, Gerakan, MIC and SUPP, Malaysians are endorsing BN’s abuse of power, poor governance and discriminatory policies. 

How blind MCA/Gerakan/MIC are to UMNO’s failures, faults and defects can be seen by their blindly supporting extremist UMNO wakil rakyats who destroy Chinese, Buddhist and Hindu temples, want to take down the Christian cross from mission schools, insult women, minorities and disabled with derogatory remarks. Are there no other qualified Malaysians with the decency, moral fibre, intelligence and respect for all Malaysians to be elected as wakil rakyats? 

Malaysians can do better in the qualities of our wakil rakyats. Adopting a performance based criteria, uniting under a common goal of democracy and sharing economic prosperity is the concrete solution towards a brighter future for all Malaysians.

* Lim Guan Eng, DAP Secretary-General


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