Speech by DAP Secretary-General and Member of Parliament for Bandar Melaka, Mr. Lim Kit Siang, at a DAP Public Rally at Sungei Way on Sunday, 3rd March 1974 at 8 p.m.
1. Call on the National Front Government to issue a White Paper on the worsening security problem in the country
While on the one hand, we keep reading statements and speeches by Alliance Ministers that the security situation is firmly under control, we also continue to read of reports about the growing security problem, which has extended in scope and geography.
From a mere problem on the Thai-Malaysia border, it has expanded to include Kedah, Kelantan, Trengganu, Pahang, Perak and Selangor. Recently, we are told, the problem has been extended to Malacca.
Last week, the Minister of Defence, Datuk Hamzah Abu Samah, when speaking to the Melaka Tengah UMNO Youth and Wanita, said that Malacca was being used to train recruits for the communists.
It was the Selangor Mentri Besar, Datuk Harun Idris, who recently said that if the people co-operated with the government, the security problem would be solved overnight.
The government should concentrate on winning the hearts and minds of the people of Malaysia. In this regard, the government should review its political, economic, educational and cultural policies and keep them in line with the aspirations of the multi-racial people in Malaysia.
Any government which continues to ignore the frustrations and discontents of large segments of the population is laying the seeds for national disunity and disharmony.
Finally, the government should issue a White Paper on the growing security problem in the country to fully inform the people of Malaysia.
2. MCA’s Mental Revolution and Chinese Unity
The MCA, which has become politically bankrupt, is now reviving two weather-beaten themes in an effort to look politically progressive and dynamic.
One of these is the so-called mental revolution among the Chinese. The MCA has talked about this for the last few years, and all that they have achieved is an essay competition.
While I wish the best of luck to all the entrants to the competition, as the money prize of $10,000 can come in handy in this present time of mad inflation, the essay participants should not forget that no matter what quality of excellence they achieve in their essay-writing, their essays will not qualify as Malaysian essay or part of Malaysian literature. This is because under the National Front cultural policy, of which the MCA is co-author, no literary work written in Chinese can qualify as Malaysian literature. Only works written in Malay will be considered as Malaysian literature.
The other theme is Chinese Unity. Malaysian Chinese can still remember how in 1971, the MCA tried to make use of the so-called Chinese unity Movement for its own political purpose to ‘reborn by borrowing the corpse of another.’
It is quite fascinating to see MCA leaders beating their chests about Chinese Unity when they have no long ago expelled other exponents of Chinese Unity, like Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, Dar. Tan Tiong Hiong and Alex Lee, from the Party/
Even now, the MCA is quarrelling with the Parti Gerakan and PPP about the allocation of parliamentary and state seats in the coming general elections. Senator Wong Seng Chow said in Penang that MCA members were in a mood to fight all the 1969 seats it contested. He is of course whistling in the dark trying to make the people think the MCA is strong and powerful. In fact, the MCA leaders should count themselves extremely lucky if they get more than 15 Parliamentary seats to contest in the next elections. The ‘mood’ of MCA has never counted for anything in the councils of UMNO!
In any event, if the MCA believes in Chinese unity, and further, believes that Parti Gerakan is a Chinese-based party, then the MCA should have no objection to Parti Gerakan fighting in the order formerly MCA seats.
3. Dr. Lim Keng Yaik has become the true disciple of Dr. Lim Chong Eu
At DAP public rallies at Kampar, Tanjong Rambutan and Pusing in January and last month, I thrice challenged Dr. Lim Keng Yaik to declare his stand on the question of Chinese education in Malaysia.
On all three occasions, Dr. Lim Keng Yaik preferred the public humiliation of keeping silent to making open his political stand. The reason is very simple. His present stand on the position of Chinese education in Malaysia is no different from the UMNO or MCA stand.
In recent months, we have seen a great transformation in the politics, of Dr. Lim Keng Yaik. He is no more the great champion and outspoken defender of all issues and woes in the country. His political senses of hearing and speaking and even seeing have deteriorated to virtual being a mute, a deaf and a blind politician.
The reason is not fair to seek. Dr. Lim Keng Yaik has now become the finest disciple of Dr. Lim Chong Eu.
When Dr. Lim Chong Eu was thrown out of MCA leadership by Tun Tan Siew Sin in 1959, and denied his ambition to join the Cabinet, his only political ambition is to get back the good books of UMNO. It has taken Dr. Lim Chong Eu over a decade to achieve his ambition, to get back into the Alliance fold, in the process, he was prepared to discard all his political principles. He was prepared to outbid the MCA and make the UMNO happier and more contented.
Dr. Lim Keng Yaik is travelling the same path. Having been expelled from the MCA, his only ambition is to return to the Alliance fold and the favours of the UMNO. He is indeed the most fervent disciple of Dr. Lim Chong Eu. Political principles and the welfare of the people are secondary to their one political aim, to get UMNO blessing to enter the Cabinet.
It may be too late for Mr. Lim Keng Yaik to reconsider his whole political purpose in life, and to rededicate himself to the fight for political principles which embody the aspirations and yearning of the people of multi-racial Malaysia, and not to use politics to regain a Cabinet post which he was forced to resign and give up. But he should rethink the whole purpose of his political involvement, and if he is to be the people’s real spokesman and champion, he must put political principles above considerations of power and position in the near future.