Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secrretary-General, MP for Tanjung and Assemblyman for Kampong Kolam, Lim Kit Siang, at a DAP Muar Dinner in Muar on Friday, 26.9.1986 at 9p.m.
Tan Koon Swan should voluntarily resign as MP for Gopeng and retain some honour, instead of being forced dishonorably do so as a result of mounting public political and moral pressure.
In today’s Star, the MCA Deputy President and Labour Minister, Datuk Lee Kim Sai said that if necessary, the MCA leaders will go to Singapore and appeal to the authorities to grant former MCA president, Tan Koon Swan leave from his jail sentence to take his oath as MP for Gopeng
After Tan Koon Swan’s arrest in Singapore in January this year for 15 charges of breach of trust, cheating and fraud in connection with the Pan Kl scandal, and the $40 million bail, the MCA organized nation-wide demonstrations against the Singapore authorities, balling on Malaysians not to visit Singapore or boycott trade with Singapore, and even threatening to cut the water supply from Johore to Singapore. Now MCA leaders want to go to Singapore authorities to allow Tan Koon Swan to take leave from Changi Prison to take his oath as MP in the Malaysian Parliament.
Even if the Singapore authorities grant leave for Tan Koon Swan oath of office, it will be a great shame and dishonour for Parliament to take his allow Tan Koon Swan, who had not completed his two-year jail sentence, to take his seat in Parliament to take his oath!
How will the Malaysian Parliament and the Malaysian image stand in the eyes of the world, if such a event is allowed to take place?
Tan Koon Swan, the MCA and Barisan Nasional leadership must accept political reality, that there is no other honourable alternative for Tan Koon Swan but to resign his Parliamentary seat of Gopeng immediately.
Either Tan koon Swan voluntarily resign as MP for Gopeng and retain some honour, or he is likely to be forced to resign dishonourably as a result of increasing public political and moral pressure.
In fact, in other countries and Parliaments where the standard of morality expected of MPs and political leaders are higher, Tan Koon Swan would have resigned as MCA president, MP and would not seek to stand for re-election, once he had been charged for criminal offences involving dishonesty – especially as Tan Koon Swan intends to plead guilty to the charges.
For his own good, as well as for the good of MCA, Barisan Nasional Government, Parliament’s honour and the country’s good name, Tan Koon Swan should terminate the agency he has brought upon everyone by his refusal to date to do the only honourable thing: to resign as MP for Gopeng.
Is the MCA leadership prevailing on Tan Koon Swan not to resign as Gopeng Mp, for fear that a by-election will precipitate a internal power struggle between the various warring factions in the MCA? No reason or excuse however should be allowed to undermine Malaysia’s honour and Parlaiment’s dignity, and I hope Tan Koon Swan would do which is right, without being forced to act by public pressure.
MP’s credibility, dignity, integrity and self-respect has never been lower a party history
Two days ago, a Malacca state leader who was disgruntled because he could not get the good seat he wanted in the recent general elections, called for an extraordinary general meeting of the MCA to take a stand as the party’s credibility, integrity, dignity and self-respect had been greatly affected as a result of the criticisms leveled at MCA leaders at the UMNO General Assembly.
This disgruntled Malacca MCA state leader is only half-right. MCA’s credibility, dignity, integrity and self-respect’ had not only been affected by the criticisms at the UMNO General Assembly, MCA’s credibility, dignity, integrity and self-respect had never been lower in MCA party history when he follow the contempt the MCA leaders are held by UMNO leaders and delegates.
Even top UMNO leaders, like Daim Zainuddin, poked fun at MCA leaders “running here and there looking for safe Malay seats to contest in the recent general elections”
It is open secret that Tan Koon Swan had wanted to stand in a safe Malay seat in Johore in the recent general elections, but the Johore Ghairman, Datuk Musa Hitam, not only refused to let Tan Koon Swan to stand in Johore, but publicity advised Tan Koon Swan not to contest until he had cleared himself of the Singapore charges.
This is why Tan Koon swan had to go to Perak to stand in the safe seat of gopeng. But now, even with the safe seat of Gopeng, the MCA leaders are afraid of facing a by-election in Gopeng, and this is why Tan Koon Swan is still hanging on the Gopeng parliamentary seat.
That the present MCA leadership’s stocks in the eyes of UMNO and Barisan Nasional Government are the lowest in history could again be seen by the refusal of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed,to appoint a MCA Minister of the Ministry of Housing and Local Government.
When the Cabinet was appointed in August after the elections, Dr. Mahathir had made it clear that the Housing and Local Government Ministry was reserved for the MCA – but now, with Tan Koon Swan’s own plan of guilty and twe-year jail sentence, as well as the extremist speeches at the recent UMNO and UMNO Youth General Assembly, the fourth MCA Cabinet post seems to have become the latest loss of political rights of the Malaysian Chinese as a result of the uselessness of MCA leaders.