Sunday, the Seremban district police chief, Assistant Commissioner Abdul Khalid
Abu Hassan warned that DAP leaders
and supporters who distribute the "No
to 911, No to 929, Yes to 1957” leaflets
to the public “risk facing action”
as they could be charged under the Sedition Act 1948. (New Straits Times
Khalid’s threat is most
deplorable and the worst example of
police officers taking the law into their own hands to criminalise legitimate constitutional political activities in the country.
has also made a mockery of the
recent efforts by the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi to
organize the Kuala Lumpur
International Conference on Islam (Kalif 2002) to show the world that the
Malaysian government's concept of Islam is compatible with democracy and human
"No to 911, No to 929, Yes to 1957"
campaign is a patriotic and nationalistic campaign to defend and uphold
the 1957 Merdeka Constitution, the "social contract" and 1963 Malaysia
Agreement that Malaysia is a democratic, secular, multi-religious, tolerant and
progressive nation with Islam as the official religion but Malaysia is
an Islamic state - whether ala-UMNO or ala-PAS.
an Islamic state - whether ala-UMNO or ala-PAS.
the "No to 929" campaign is seditious, then the 1957 Merdeka
Constitution and the 1963 Malaysia Agreement are seditious documents.
Furthermore, the first three Prime Ministers, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak and
Tun Hussein Onn would have committed sedition offences as well as they had at
one time or another proclaimed that Malaysia is a secular nation with Islam as
the official religion but not an Islamic state.
fact, on 8th February 1983, on the occasion of his 80th birthday,
Tunku issued the clear public message that plural Malaysia should not be turned
into an Islamic State.
have here the newspaper cuttings of that occasion more than 20 years ago. This
is the report from “The Star” of February 9, 1983, under its overall
coverage of “The Tunku Turns 80”, with
the headline: “Don’t Make Malaysia An Islamic State: Tunku”, which states:
“Kuala Lumpur, Thurs – Malaysia should never be turned into an Islamic State, former Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman said tonight.
“He said that Malaysia was set up as a secular State with Islam as the official religion and this was enshrined in the Constitution.
“’The Constitution must be respected and adhered to. There have been attempts by some people who tried to introduce religious laws and morality laws. This cannot be allowed.
“’The country has a multi-racial population with various beliefs. Malaysia must continue as a secular State with Islam as the official religion,’ he advised UMNO.
“The Tunku was speaking at a birthday party hosted by the Barisan Nasional at Wisma MCA here.
“He had also some pointed advice for the other two major communities in the country.
“To the Chinese, represented by the MCA, he said: ‘Don’t lap up all the business opportunities. Share them.’
“In a lighter vein, he told the MIC and the Indians: ‘Talk less, work harder and co-operate more closely with the other races and other component parties of the Barisan.’
“The Tunku stressed that racial unity and close co-operation among the races was the only way for Malaysia to survive, let alone progress.”
call that Malaysia should not be turned into an Islamic State was at the time
fully supported by all the Barisan
Nasional component parties, including UMNO, MCA, MIC and Gerakan.
DAP’s “No to 911, No to 929, Yes to 1957” People’s
Awareness Campaign is therefore fully in the spirit of the legacy
of Tunku Abdul Rahman as expressed in his speech on the occasion
of his 80th birthday at the grand dinner hosted by Barisasn Nasional on
February 8, 1983.
hope police officers like the Seremban district chief,
Abdul Khalid is not
suggesting that Bapa Malaysia and the first Prime Minister of Malaysia had
committed an offence under the Sedition Act 1948 when he publicly urged in the
presence of all the Barisan Nasional leaders on his 80th birthday not
to turn Malaysia into an Islamic State.
how could the DAP”s “No to 911, No to 929, Yes to 1957” campaign, which is
making the same call as the Tunku on his 80th birthday, be seditious
under the Sedition Act 1948?
is fully committed to the rule of law and eschews all forms of illegal and
unconstitutional practices, which is proven by the DAP’s 36 years of political
record, but we will not condone the unconstitutional acts of the police in
criminalizing legitimate political activities enshrined in the Malaysian
this reason, DAP leaders, including the DAP Federal Territory MPs Dr. Tan Seng Giaw (Kepong), Tan Kok Wai (Cheras), Fong Kui Lun
(Bukit Bintang) and Teresa Kok (Seputeh) and myself, will visit the Seremban
market tomorrow morning to distribute the “No to 911, No to 929, Yes to
1957” campaign pamphlet in discharge of our legitimate constitutional
not want to be arrested a third time over the “No to 911, No to 929, Yes to
1957” campaign, but no political
leader worth his salt can allow any police officer to take the law into his own
hands to criminalize legitimate constitutional political activities, just
because it is carried out by the Opposition.
call on Suhakam Chairman, Tan Sri Abu Talib Othman, to send commissioners to the
Seremban Central Market tomorrow to
observe the DAP’s “No to 911, No to 929, Yes to 1957” People’s Awareness
Campaign to ensure that the police
do not continue to take the law into their own hands and criminalize legitimate
constitutional political activities – which constitutes grave human rights
violations which come directly under the Suhakam’s jurisdiction to protect and
promote human rights.