Press Conference Statement in Parliament House Committee Room 2 at 5.30 p.m.
DAP deplores and condemns government decision to abolish local authorities in Malaysia
The Democratic Action Party deplores and condemns government decision to abolish local authorities in Malaysia.
It is even more regrettable that this government decision was made public in the form of a Ministerial statement in the Dewan Ra’ayat today by the Minister of Technology, Research and Local Government, Dato Ong Kee Hui, where Members of Parliament has no chance to debate.
The DAP calls on the Minister to immediately table the Athi Nahappan Report and to give Members of Parliament a chance to debate a matter which concerns the life and death of grass-roots democracy in Malaysia.
By Abolishing local authorities, the government is killing grass-roots democracy, and denying the people a chance to administer their town and local council affairs democratically.
It is clear that the motive behind this Alliance move was the realisation on the part of the Alliance government that if there are local council elections, the Democratic Action Party will sweep and win the overwhelming majority of the Municipal, town and local councils in Malaysia.
The fear of losing the overwhelming majority of Municipal, town and local council to the DAP is no justification for killing grassroots democracy.
If the people want the majority of the Municipal, town and local council authorities to be run by the DAP, they should have the right to do so if Malaysia is a democratic nation.
We are shocked that once again, the Alliance government is sacrificing the people’s interest for its own narrow party interest.
The people can only look forward to inefficient, arrogant, corrupt and unresponsive Municipal, town and local councils as the local councillors are no longer answerable to the people, and do not have to fear rejection at the polls.
We can expect disreputable and discredited Alliance politicians back in the positions of power in the Municipal, local and town council authorities to lord over the people-who would otherwise lose their deposits if they had dared to stand in local authorities elections
Ironically enough, Dato Ong Kee Hui, by announcing the government’s intention to abolish local authorities, has abolished more than half his own Ministerial portforlio.
The DAP calls for a full-scale Parliament debate on whether local authorities should be abolished. If the Prime Minister, Tub Abdul Razak, really believes in a meaningful Parliament, then there must be a full-scale debate on such a vital national matter.