Speech by DAP Secretary-General, Parliamentary Candidate for Tanjong and State Assembly Candidate for Kampong Kolam, Lim Kit Siang, at a ceramah at Lim Jetty on 28.7.1986 at 9.30pm
DAP is prepared to take over the State Government of Penang if people want a change after 17 years of Gerakan rule
The 1986 General Elections should be an opportunity for all forces in the country which have suffered enough from the 29 years of misrule, injustice and discrimination of the ruling parties to unite to deny Barisan Nasional two-thirds parliamentary majority.
This was what Chinese Civic Rights Committee and Tung took them literally and Chiau Chung leaders were advocating in recent months, and even the DAP was even blamed and warned for not wanting to join the PAS-led Opposition Front because of our principled refusal to agree to the PAS concept of an Islamic State.
But suddenly, the DAP is again in the wrong because we wanted to deny the Barisan Nasional two-thirds parliamentary majority, including winning the Tanjong parliamentary seat. Tanjong, of course, holds a special importance for us, for it we cannot make the premier constituency in Penang endorse the DAP stand that the general elections is over the fundamental policy issues affecting the rights and future of the people, then the DAP has failed.
This is Now or Never for the People to Restore their rights
The Tanjong parliamentary constituency is on of crucial importance because the 1986 general elections in a ‘now or Never’ opportunity for Malaysians to make it clear to Dr.Mahathir Mohamed, UMNO and Barisan Nasional government that there must be a reappraisal and reformulation of nation building policies.
If Malaysians do not use this opportunity to tell Dr.Mahathir that “Enough is Enough’, and that there must be radical changes in government policies, there is not going to be another opportunity for a long long time. In this crucial political battle, can the people of Tanjong stand aside and just be an onlooker?
Unfortunately, there are people who insists in regarding the Tanjong battle as a personal battle between Koh Tsu Koon and Lim Kit Siang. As a result, a Thousand-strong army is being assembled all over the country to come to Tanjong with the objective of finish me off politically.
This Thousand-Strong Army should be fighting to deny Barisan Nasional two-third majority, but strangely beyond reason, they are fighting to defend the Barisan’s two-third majority!
Why is it this Thousand-Army dare not go Kubang Pasu to fight Dr.Mahathir Mohamed, if they think that the Barisan Nasional policies on educational, language and culture are wrong, instead of coming to Tanjong to ‘finish’ me off, when at one tome, they praised me for speaking out in Parliament on the fundamental rights of the Malaysian Chinese on education, language and culture issues?
Is it because they are afraid to send the Thousand-Strong to Kubang Pasu to fight the Prime Minister, it is no small matter to take on Dr.Mahathir Mohamed, while they think it is easier and safety to try to bully me?
I still hope that the clash with this ‘Finish Lim Kit Siang Thousand-Strong Army’ of Tung Chiau Chung elements could be avoided, and I would urge them to rise above individual or personal considerations. They should remember what they had been saying all over the country in the past few months, that the Barisan Nasional government must be taught a lesson. Some even went to the extent of calling for the toppling of the Barisan Nasional government.
Shouldn’t they be focussing their energies and efforts in this direction, instead of working against this political trend in the 1986 general elections.
I have absolutely no quarrel with Tung Chiau Chung in the 1986 general elections. The Tanjong battle is between DAP and Barisan Nasional.
I am not afraid to be ‘finished off’ if the ‘Finish Lim Kit Siang Thousand-Strong Army’ insists on marching to Tanjong. Having accepted the challenge to stand in Tanjong to propel the Tanjong voters to lead nation-wide political movement for change in the general elections, I am prepared for the worst and to accept defeat, and bring my 17-year parliamentary career to a close.
I have been accused of preparing the ‘back door’ for my re-entry into Parliament, that either mt son, Lim Guan Eng, if elected to Kota Melaka, or another comrade in another constituency, would resign to make way for me to return to Parliament.
I want to make it clear that there is absolutely no such plan. If the premier constituency of Penang, with the largest Chinese electorate in Penang, after reviewing my 1-year parliamentary record decides that I am not fit to be elected, I will not have to face to return to Parliament by way of vacated by-elections to look Dr.Mahathir Mohamed in the face.
I want to make it clear therefore that if I am defeated in Tanjong, I accept the verdict of the people of Tanjong, and there will be no arrangement for any DAP MP to vacate his parliamentary seat for me to get into Parliament.
I know that I have also been accused of power-crazy and wanting to hang on to the post of Opposition Leader at any cost, on the ground that t get $7,000, a car, an official residence, a car, a driver for the position-which is all untrue. As Opposition Leader, I get an extra allowance of $2,000, an official in parliament House, and absolutely nothing more. Surely, if money is my motivation in life, $2,000 allowance a month is a ridiculous sum!
I regret that the Gerakan campaign in Tanjong is descending to the Level of character-assassination against me. I want to declare publicly, that whatever the outcome of the elections,
I will not stoop to character-assassination of Koh Tsu Koon. I had said he is a good young man, but in the wrong party, who could not change one iota of the national which are the root cause of the people of the people of Malaysia, in particular the five million. Malaysian Chinese. I will continue to conduct a gentleman’s election campaign, and I will see to it that the DAP election workers will not resort to any smear or character-assassination campaign.
Dr.Lim Chong Eu should be allowed to retire and enjoy life
Yesterday, Dr.Lim attacked me for opening the road for PAS to take over Penang State Government. He must getting too old and tried, and talking foolish things.
PAS fielded only 15 seats in the Penang State and even it PAS wins all the 15 seats, it could not form the Penang State Government. And is Dr.Lim Chong Eu having so little confidence in UMNO that he thinks UMNO will lose all the seats it is contesting?
Dr.Lim even accused the DAP if wanting to help Pas form a Islamic state in Penang. Clearly, Dr.Lim Chong Eu has not been reading the newspaper reading lately, or he would not have made such a wild allegation. This is because he would otherwise know that DAP took the uncompromising stand that we will not accept the PAS concept of an Islamic State and refused to join the Opposition Front.
It is clear Dr.Lim Chong Eu should retire form politics, as was his original intention, until he was ‘directed’ by Dr.Mahathir Mohamed to come out again, for a temporary period, for the 1986 general elections.
The people of Padang Kota will be doing Dr.Lim a service by allowing him to retire from politics and enjoy his various hobbies, by voting for DAP Candidate, Wong Hung Yoke.
DAP Chinese Chief Minister for Penang
In the last three general elections in 1974, 1978 and 1982, the Gerakan’s chief campaign issue in the state general elections is the Chinese Chief Minister issue.
This has resulted in split votes in constituencies, whereby the parliamentary votes go to DAP while the state assembly votes to Gerakan; The fear which Gerakan campaign workers playes on was that the loss of a few Gerakan seats in the State Assembly will create a situation where the Chinese Chief Minister‘s post, the last important political post held by a Chinese, would be lost to UMNO.
After 17 years of Gerakan rule, the time come for change in Penang, and the DAP is prepared to form the next Penang State Government with a Chinese Chief Minister.
I hope the people of Penang will accomplish two important and historic political tasks on August 3:
Firstly, at the national level, to ensure 100 per cent success of seven parliamentary seats contested by DAP in Penang to deny Barisan Nasional two-third majority in Parliament,; and
Secondly, to vote into power a Penang State Government and political change after 17 years of Gerakan rule.