Speech by DAP Secretary-General, MP for Tanjong and Assemblyman for Kampong Kolam, Lim Kit Siang, at the thanks-giving party for Malacca DAP State election workers at Min Sen Charitable Association Hall on Thursday, 7.8.1986 at 8 pm
MCA, Gerakan and MIC should call for an urgent Barisan Nasional Supreme Council meeting to demand for policy review and changes
The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed, said that the Barisan Nasional’s great victory in the 1986 general elections showed that there is nothing wrong with policies of the government, and that there would be no major changes to these policies.
Dr. Mahathir can only make this claim if he ignored the clear verdict of about half of the electorate who voted against the Barisan Nasional. Dr. Mahathir should realize that although the Barisan Nasional won 148 out of 177 seats, or 83.6 per cent of parliamentary seats, it secured only 55.8 per cent of the total votes cast.
As a result of the defect in our electoral system, the Barisan Nasional has got and unfair and lopsided overwhelming majority of seats, but this cannot hide the fact that about half the electorate had rejected Barisan Nasional policies.
Yesterday, the MCA chief administrative director, Michael Yeoh, echoing the statements of Gerakan President, Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and Deputy MCA Education Minister, Ng Cheng Kiat, said that the MCA and Gerakan may not have the political clout to influence the decision-making process of the Barisan Nasional Government. As a result of DAP’s improved performance in the 1986 general elections.
When the MCA achieved an unprecedented victory in the 1982 general elections, it proved to have no clout to influence Barisan Nasional decision-making, with the past 52 months seeing the most widespread and far-reaching erosion of the rights of the people.
The test of political leadership is the ability to turn adverse situations to their advantages. The loss of MCA and Gerakan can in fact provide MCA and Gerakan leaders will great political clout to influence decision-making, if they are really concerned about the welfare and rights of the people, and not just interested in Ministerial and other official appointments.
MCA and Gerakan leaders must make it very clear to UMNO and Barisan leaders that their setbacks in the 1986 general is elections is because of the deep disaffection of the people, in particular the non-Malays, to Barisan Nasional policies, and that they see no purpose in continuing in the Barisan Nasional if the Government is not prepared to heed the clear verdict of the people.
In fact, I would urge the MCA, Gerakan and MIC leaders to call for an urgent Barisan Nasional Supreme Coumeil meeting to ask for Barisan Nasional policy review and changes in keeping with the clear verdict of the people.
I feel disappointed at the performance of the of the MCA and Gerakan leaders, for they do not seen to have the quality to rise up to the challenge of the 1986 general elections. Had any MCA, Gerakan or MIC leader seen Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohmad to discuss about the need for policy changes?
Or are these MCA, Gerakan, MIC leaders more worried about whether they would be appointed Ministers than about the people’s clear demand for policy changes?