Speech by Lim Kit Siang at the DAP Canning Chinese New Year Open House at Kampong Simee DAP Branch on Monday, 22nd February 2010 at 10 pm:
Recent caning of three Muslim women latest in series under Najib’s premiership flooding Malaysia in adverse worldwide spotlight inimical to our international image and competitiveness
The recent caning of three Muslim women for allegedly participating in illicit sex is the latest in a series of events flooding Malaysia in adverse worldwide spotlight inimical to our international image and competitiveness in the ten months Datuk Seri Najib Razak has taken over as Prime Minister of Malaysia.
Before I came, I googled the two words “malaysia caning” and there were 257,000 search results. I next added another word to google the three words “malaysia muslim caning” and the finds multiplied by 30 times to return 6.45 million results.
Malaysia cannot continue to be in adverse international spotlight if we are to restore our international competitiveness by regaining national and international confidence in good governance; the rule of law; a democratic, progressive and model multi-racial, multi-cultural and multi-religious modern nation to be ideal destination for FDIs, haven for tourists and hub for international students.
There had been a series of adverse publicity for Malaysia world-wide since Najib became Prime Minister negating all his efforts to project a new slogan, 1Malaysia – such as the divisive “Allah” controversy, the sacrilegious burning of churches and attacks on mosques and other places of worship; the 5-0 Federal Court judgment seeking to legalise the undemocratic and unconstitutional ouster of Datuk Seri Nizar Jamaluddin in the Umno power grab in Perak; the mysterious death of DAP aide Teoh Beng Hock at Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission headquarters last July, the recrudescence of dangerous politics of race and religion, like the irresponsible campaign to falsely and viciously paint the Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng and Penang Pakatan Rakyat state government as anti-Malay and anti-Islam etc.
We are thankful that this morning in Batu Pahat, the baby of Teoh Beng Hock has been born and both the mother and baby boy are safe. Malaysians of goodwill and good heart, regardless of race or religion, not only wish both of them well but want those responsible for Teoh Beng Hock’s death to be brought to justice without any delay.
But the question that must be uppermost in the minds of thinking Malaysians is why the new Prime Minister seems to be so helpless that he is not only incapable of checking these adverse developments for Malaysia, he could not even get Umno and Barisan Nasional solidly behind him to give unequivocal support to his 1Malaysia campaign.
The vicious campaign to falsely paint the Penang Chief Minister and Penang Pakatan Rakyat state government as anti-Malay and anti-Islam is indeed a great test for Guan Eng and the PR Penang State Government.
But what is little realized is that it is an even greater test for Najib and the Barisan Nasional - Umno, MCA, Gerakan, MIC and the Sabah and Sarawak component parties - whether they are serious about the 1Malaysia slogan and concept.
*Lim Kit Siang, DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Ipoh Timor