Press Statement by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Kota Melaka, Lim Kit Siang, at the Malacca on Tuesday, 26.6.1984:
Call on MCA Exco Member Datuk Lim Soo Kiang to explain why he supported the State Government plan to level and develop Bukit China and his promise to the Chinese community that he would not agree to any further EXCO action to proceed with the decision
It was reported yesterday that the so-called ‘Save MCA Committee’ in Malacca is calling a meeting of 52 MCA branches tomorrow night to discuss various urgent matters, one of which is with regard to the State Government’s plan to level and develop Bukit China into a housing and commercial complex.
As the head of the Malacca ‘Save MCA Committee’ and the rebel 52 MCA branches is Datuk Lim Soo Kiang, who is also MCA State Exco Menber, Datuk Lim should use the meeting tomorrow night to publicly explain why he had supported the Malacca Government’s plan to level and develop Bukit China.
Datuk Lim should also give a public pledge that he would not permit the Malacca State Exco to proceed with its decision to level and develop Bukit China, which is in utter defiance of the religious, cultural and historic rights of the Chinese in Malacca and Malaysia.
If Datuk Lim Soo Kiang, who is in the EXCO, is not prepared to do the above two matters, then there is no point of the 52 rebel ‘Save MCA’ branches to meet over Bukit China, for they would be no different from the MCA power-faction.
In actual fact, if the MCA Exco Members, namely Datuk Lim Soo Kiang and Datuk Tee Cheng York, had been responsible in their political duties the Malacca Chinese, they should have blocked the EXCO from taking a decision to level and develop Bukit China. If Datuk Tee and Datuk Lim could not become guardians of the Chinese rights and ancestral trusts as embodied in Bukit China, then whose interests are they serving in the State Exco.
The Malacca Chinese community must understand clearly the root problem of the Bukit China crisis. Firstly, it is because of the greedy attitude of some UMNO and MCA leaders who want to fulfill their ‘Bukit China’ dream to become instant multi-millionaires from the development of Bukit China. Secondly, it is because of the political failure of responsibility of the Chinese Exco Members, where the decision to level and develop Bukit China is taken in the first place. If the decision had been blocked, as it should have been, then the Bukit China crisis would never have arisen.
In view of the great failure of responsibility of the MCA State Exco members to defend the interest of Bukit China, Datuk Lim Soo Kiang and Datuk Tee Cheng York must be made to account to the Malacca Chinese community for their actions.
2. Call on Chinese community to beware of the ‘red herring’ thrown by the Malacca State Government to ‘divide and rule’ on the Bukit China issue.
Yesterday, two press reported that the Malacca State Government would ask the Cheng Hoon Teng Temple and the Hokkien community to have the option to develop the’ the hill into a housing and commercial complex.
I would call on the Chinese community to be aware of these ‘red herrings’ of the Malacca State Governmentat ‘divide and rule’ on the Bukit Chian issue. The Malacca State Government must be hoping of tempting some Chinese community leaders to come out to support the government decision to level and develop Bukit Chine, with the promise of the opportunity of partaking in the financial profits in the venture.
The Chinese community must stand united and solid in opposing any State Government plan to level and develop Bukti China, and must remain steadfast to demand that Bukit China should remain the religious, cultural, and historic centre of the Chinese in Malacca in particular, and Malaysia in general, and oppose any attempt to turn it into a housing and commercial centre to enrich a few UMNO and MCA leaders.
I announced yesterday that Sdr Yong Wee Yoke, Sdr. Lai Keum Ban an I, as DAP Mp and Assemblymen in Malacca town, propose to have a dialogue with all Chinese associations, clans and societies to exchange views on the future of Bukit China in view of the Malacca State Government decision to level and develop Bukit China.
The first three organizations we would contact to have a dialogue would be with the Cheng Hoon Teng Temple Corporation, the Chinese Chamber of Commerce, and the Kokkien Huay Kuan, to be followed by others.
I hope that an early date could be fixed for these dialogues, because of the urgency and importance of the matter.