Fellow Malaysian Voters of Sandakan and Tawau

An Open Leter to the Voters of Sandakan and Tawau by DAP SECRETARY-GENERAL, LIM KIT SIANG

Fellow Malaysian Voters of Sandakan and Tawau,

Why you should vote for the Rocket

The Democratic Action Party(DAP) fielded five Parliamentary candidates in Sabah on Nomination Day on June 21,but three of our candidates were disqualified on the most flimxy and unjustifiable of grounds. We intend to challenge the disqualification of our three Parliamentary candidates in Gaya, Silam and Ulu Padas, after the general elections by way of an election petition.

Meanwhile, we have two Parliamentary candidates in Sabah contesting the elections, namely Sdr. Fung Ket Win of Sandakan and Sdr. Lau Keong Kai of Tawau.

They belong to the band of dedicated and idealistic Malaysians who have the courage to come forward to pioneer the way for a new tomorrow, where there is equality and justice and where there is a clean and honest government.

We in the DAP are committed to the creation of a multi-racial, democratic socialist Malaysian Malaysia, where there is political democracy, economic justice, educational equality and a clean, honest and efficient government.

Malaysia and Sabah claim to practise parliamentary democracy, and for parliamentary democracy to function properly there is a need for a effective and outspoken Opposition like the DAP.

The Barisan Nasional may claim that the DAP is not a responsible Opposition. The Barisan Nasional s entitled to its views. We in the DAP are a responsible Opposition, and we are responsible to the People, and not to Barisan Nasional.

What struck me most during my week-long visit to Sabah at the end of February this year, was the absence of a genuine Opposition movement in Sabah to speak up for the people’s tights and interests.

After my return to West Malaysia, I raised several important Sabah issues in Parliament, but unfortunately, these issues were not supported by the Sabah Members of Parliament.

I had raised the problem of a fair allocation of radio and television time for the different languages, that Chinese and Kadazan programmes should be available for Sabah television viewers and that there should be a full restoration of Chinese Language radio broadcasts over the Sabah network.

I had also raised the grave problem of the Southern Philippines refugees in Sabah, the problems the refugees have created. I brought to the attention of Parliament that as a result of unchecked entry of these illegal immigrants, law-and-order in Sabah has become a grave problem with a very high rate of crimes. Furthermore, the refugee problem has also created socio-economic and educational problems for the Sabahans, whether Kadazan, Chinese or Malays.

There are many other problems which disturb the people of Sabah, like the continued problem of corruption in Sabah, the insensitive attitude of the Government to people’s problems as highlighted by the scandalous issue of taxi permits throughout Sabah, the poor service provided by the local authorities whether in terms of road maintenance or upkeep of public facilities or solution of the problems and hardships faced by hawkers.

An effective and outspoken Opposition can raise these issues and ensure that they secure public and government attention. It would be much better and more effective it these Sabah problems ate raised in Parliament by Sabah Members of Parliament themselves.

It is for this reason that behalf of the Democratic Action Party, I ask you to vote for Ser. Fung Ket Win in Sandakan and Sdr. Lau Kong Kai in Tawau, so that they can speak up not only for the people of Sandakan and Tawau, but also for the people of Sabah in the Federal Parliament.

It is my experience in my nine years as a Member of Parliament that the problems of the people of Sabah have seldom been raised in Parliament. For all practical purpose, it would appear that Sabah has no Members of Parliament in the Dewan Rakyat.

By electing two DAP Members of Parliament in Sabah, the other parties in Sabah, whether ruling party or opposition, will have to do more to represent the people’s interests. This will be a healthy competition in which the people will be the beneficiaries. We in the DAP invite the other Sabah political parties I a friendly competition to see who can better represent the people of Sabah, to assure for ourselves and our children a better future.