Persecution of DAP Leaders

Speech by DAO Secretary-General, Mr.Lim Kit Siang, at a meeting of Kinta DAP Branches of Tapah, Kampar, Membang di-Awan, Ipog, Lawan Kuda Bahru N/V, Jelapang N/V, Tanjong Tuallang, Papan, Sungei Durian, Batu Gajah, Pusing and Bali N/V held Kampar DAP Branch premises on Thursday, 22nd July 1971 at 7.30 p.m.

The Alliance and the MCA have in the last five years tried all tactics and stratagems to destroy the DAP, which they see as their greatest threat and challenge.

They have tried arbitrary detention. In 1969 after my election as Member of Parliament for Bandar Melaka, I was detained for 17 months under the Internal Security Act for no crime other than voicing the people’s hopes, grievances and sorrows.

They have tried court prosecution, and the Member of Parliament for Kampar, Sdr.Fan Yew Teng, was charged for offences under the Sedition Act. Although Sdr.Fan is now appealing against his conviction under the Sedition Act, he has been disqualified as a Member of Parliament although the entire legal process has not been completed.

They have tried to subvert and induce DAP Member of Parliament and State Assemblymen to betray the DAP by offering them Ministerial positions, money, influence and other material temptations if they would cross over to the ruling party.

All these strategems have failed. Now they are engaged in nation-wide campaign to try to discredit the DAP leadership as men who are ready to betray the DAP for personal profit. They hope, in this way, to undermine the unity of the DAP by creating doubt among the DAP rank-and-file in the integrity of the DAP leaders, and by setting the non-Chinese members against the Chinese members.

The Alliance and MCA know that many political parties have destroyed themselves from intra-party strife and disunity. They are therefore trying to destroy the DAP by trying to foment internal strife and disunity inside the DAP.

The Central Executive Committee of the DAP is aware of these mischievous tactics of the MCA, and will not allow them to succeed.

The Democratic Action Party has won the mandate of the people to pursue and press for the realisation of a democratic socialist, Malaysian Malaysia.

We shall remain committed to this sacred objective, for the sake of ourselves and our children and our children’s children. We shall remain consistent in our beliefs and ideals.

We are unlike some political parties which try to show two faces to the public. For instance, in the recent debate on the Second Malaysia Plan, we hear one or two MCA members expressing grave doubts as to whether the non-Malay poor in the urban areas are going to be helped under the Plan.

Yet these very members has voted for the Second Malaysia Plan. Of course, it will be asking too much of these MCA member s to stand firmly on their political principles, when it was their MCA President, Tun Tan Siew Sin, who seconded the Second Malaysia Plan in Parliament.

We, in the DAP, however, abstained in the voting, for while we support the objective of the Plan to uplift the lot of the rural Malay have-nots, we are not convinced that the non-Malay urban have-nits and in the new villages are adequately looked after.

Despite the evil campaign of rumour-mongering of the MCA to cast aspersions on the integrity and dedication of the DAP leadership, the DAP leaders and the movement as a whole can stand on its past record inside and outside Parliament in stoutly upholding the people’s interests without fear or favour.

The DAP’s stand in Parliament on the Constitution Amendment Bill is a very good example of this.

Together with the People’s Progressive Party, the DAP were the only ones who were brave enough to stand up and oppose the Bill.

I know there were Members of Parliament from other Opposition parties who were opposed to the Bill, but under the pressure of naked government hostility and enmity, they wilted and supported the Constitutional amendments.

The DAP will always act with conviction. With courage, we shall always stand by our principles, however great the price and the sacrifice we have the pay for them.

It is only in this way that we can get and deserve the confidence and trust of the people of Malaysia.