Speech by the DAP Candidate for the Serdang State by-election, Mr. Lim Kit Siang, who is also DAP Organising Secretary, at the final DAP by-election rally at Sungei Way New Village on Friday, December 27, 1968 at 8 p.m.
Tomorrow, 28th December 1968, is the day of voting and the night of judgement by 24,000 voters of Serdang.
The question is how many of the 24,000 voters will come out to vote and exercise judgement. In the past election, the percentage of voting in urban areas and new villages are always much lower than the percentage of voting in kampong areas. This is not because the voters in urban areas and new villages are politically more backward than the kampong people, but because the Alliance made used of the penghulu system to make sure that every kampong voter comes out to vote, and vote the Alliance.
This element of compulsion does not exist in urban areas and new village. This way why in kampongs, the voting percentage was always in the region of 90 per cent, while the voting per centage in towns and new village around 60 per cent.
This must not happen in Serdang, because a low percentage of voting will benefit the Alliance, and ensure an Alliance victory. Already in the Malay press, M. P. for the area, Mr. Michael Chen, has blatantly called for the Malay voter to vote for the Alliance to help defeat the DAP.
However inconvenient, despite whatever weather, the voters of Serdang must come out solidly to vote, because they are deciding whether the Alliance’s policy in classifying all non-Malay Malaysians as second-class citizens should continue.
If they do not vote, they are giving tacit approval to the Alliance’s policy to wipe out the Chinese, Tamil and English language, close down Chinese, Tamil and English primary and secondary schools, destroy the Merdeka University, and Malay-ise this country of ours.
The people have lived for 13 years under Alliance misrule, growing corruption, increasing taxes, rising cost of living and falling standard of life, extravagant government waste of taxpayers’ money, gross neglect of the workers’ and the poor’s welfare, deterioriating public service, racial discrimination, etc.
The polling day is the day for them to register their disapproval of the Alliance’s maladministration and misrule.
If they fail to vote, or to vote wisely, they are not only failing themselves, but even more important, failing their children and children’s children, because they will be condemning them to grow up in an even worse, racial, unjust and unequal Malaysian nation.
Today, the Alliance has made all non-Malays ‘non-bumiputras’ and second class citizens. Unless this policy is opposed and voted against, our children and children’s children will grow up and become third-class or even forth-class citizens on the land of their birth.
What is Tun Tan Siew Sin, Dr. Lim Swee Aun, Mr. Khaw Khai Boh, Mr. Michael Chen, the present Serdang candidate, Mr. Thuan Phaik Phok, and all MCA men fighting for?
They are fighting to be leaders of Malaysia’s second-class citizens
The DAP rejects the UMNO classification of non-Malays as second-class citizens, and condemns the MCA for its abject acceptance of this gross inequality and injustice.
We in the DAP, and we call an all Malaysians to endorse us, want every citizen to be an equal citizen, without first-class or second-class citizenship differentiation.
The Gerakan, under the leadership of the Alatas brothers, have the same nation-building policies of the Alliance, because they do not permit equal status to Chinese, Tamil and English schools, and because they oppose Chinese education, as illustrated by their opposition and denunciation of the Merdeka University.
Although the Serdang by-election is a three-cornered fight, it is in fact a fight of two forces: the forces for a Malaysian Malaysia, as represented by the DAP, and the forces for a communal Malaysia, as represented by the Alliance and the Gerakan.
All that the Gerakan is seeking to do is to split opposition votes, to give the Alliance more chance of victory, so that the common objective of the Gerakan and the Alliance, a communal Malaysia, can triumph over the DAP’s Malaysian Malaysia.
The by-election is more than a contest between the DAP on the one side, and the Alliance and the Gerakan on the other.
It is a battle between the forces of multi-racialism and the forces of communalism, between the forces of a Malaysian Malaysia and the forces of a Malay and Indonesian Malaysia.
On tomorrow’s by-election result will determine whether the present and future generations of Malaysians will enter into an even darker age of racialism and inequality, or whether the people of Serdang have forged a torch to banish the curses and evil of racialism and inequality, to usher in a more just and equal society, where there is not only no exploitation of man by man, class by class, but also race by race.