Forward    Feedback    


Angry accusations of interference in Malaysia’s internal affairs highlights BN’s state of denial at Thierry Rommel’s truthful comments that Malaysia is under emergency rule with limited political freedoms, no clean and fair elections and that the New Economic Policy (NEP) fosters corruption, uncompetitive and inefficient practices


Press Statement

by Lim Guan Eng



(Petaling Jaya, Thursday): Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s angry accusations of interference in Malaysia’s internal affairs against former European Commission envoy Dr Thierry Rommel, only serves to highlight the BN government’s state of denial. Rommel had spoken the truth that Malaysia is still under a state of emergency with limited political freedoms, no clean and fair elections and that the NEP fosters corruption, uncompetitive and inefficient practices.

How can Najib claim that Malaysia is not in a state of emergency when four Emergency Proclamations passed in 1964, 1966, 1969 and 1977 have still not been repealed until today? Even the Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) in its maiden 2000 Report noted that this “perpetual state of emergency” continues although the events that occasioned them are long gone. SUHAKAM even said,

“Fundamental liberties such as freedom of assembly, freedom of expression, and freedom of religion need to be upheld. Detention without trial, the continuous state of emergency, discrimination against women, native customary rights and the ratification of various international human rights instruments are all issues that SUHAKAM have identified as deserving its priority attention.”

DAP challenges Najib to bring out factual evidence prove his empty rhetoric that Rommel were "out of line, baseless and conflicted with the real situation in the country". That is why police were not enforcing the law when they acted harshly and brutally on 10 November 2007 against peaceful demonstrators exercising their fundamental right to freedom of assembly when they were not destroying public property or harming any individuals. Instead the police were allowing themselves to be used and employed at the political behest of BN to serve their political interests to deny the voices of ordinary Malaysians seek clean and fair elections to be heard. How then can Rommel be wrong when the facts bear out his comments that election campaigns were too short and that the media was biased toward government campaigning?

Rommel’s criticism against the NEP for fostering corruption and a barrier as well as distortion to trade can not be refuted when the NEP allows the government to award state contracts to Malay businesses without clear, competitive tender procedures. The seriousness of such corruption is backed up by an estimate by US financial house Morgan Stanley that Malaysia lost US$100 billion from corruption over the last two decades.

Share RM 40 billion subsidies with Malaysians to spur the domestic market

To hide such massive corruption, the BN government has tried to divert attention by stressing on racial sentiments, particularly the extension of the Bumiputera-based discrimination against non-bumis and monopolistic preference for bumis in public procurement. But such hoodwink economics impresses not even magicians much less economists.

Despite BN’s claims of a booming economy, ordinary Malaysians are not benefiting but struggling to maintain their standards of living in the face of rising prices caused by both corruption and rising fuel prices. It is ridiculous for the BN government to continue to lie by claiming an inflation rate of only 2% from January to September 2007 when the true situation on the ground is more than 20% where even the poor man’s vegetable onions have doubled in price, milk powder have gone up by 30% and flour by 51% this year.

BN has ignored the hardships faced by the people by refusing to fight corruption and share in Petronas huge profits. Instead of spending RM 40 billion annually on subsidies, DAP proposes that amount to be shared with Malaysians by giving annually RM 3,000 to working Malaysians earning less than RM 3,000 monthly and annually RM 6,000 to a family with a combined income of less than RM 6,000 monthly. Sharing RM 40 billion of Petronas profits on Malaysians would not only reduce subsidies, allow Malaysian to face rising prices but also spur the economy by allowing RM 40 billion to spur our local domestic retail market.


* Lim Guan Eng, Secretary-General of DAP

Your e-mail:

Your name: 

Your friend's e-mail: 

Your friend's name: