Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the official opening of the Sungei Pinang DAP Branch Annual General Meeting held on Wednesday, 18th April 1990 at 8 p.m.
Parliamentary will be dissolved and general elections held in the next hundred days
Parliament should be dissolved and the general elections held in the next hundred days. There are two schools of through as to whether Parliament would be dissolved next month or in July.
The next school vacation is from May 12 to June 3 while the August school vacation is from August 4 to 12.
If the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed, dissolves parliamentary for the general elections to fall into the next school vacation (in which case, the latest polling date will be June 2), Dr. Mahathir must be very desperate and panicky about the political stocks of the Barisan Nasional.
This is because a May or June general elections must mean that Dr. Mahathir cannot make use of the March registration of voters, when this snap voters registration exercise was specially ordered by the UMNO Baru Supreme Council to put some 300,000 UMNO Baru members and supporters on the elections roll.
I do not see how the Election Commission could rush out the new 1990 Electoral Roll incorporating the March registration of voters in time of May or June general elections.
The Elections Commission is presently processing the 437,279 new voters registered during the 27-day snap voters; registration exercise from March 1 to March 27.
Before the 1990 Electoral Roll could be ready for use for the elections purposes, the draft electoral roll has to be put up for a two-week public inspection for objections.
I have no doubt that for the first time in the history of Malaysian elections, there would be the most number of objections during the two-week public inspection of the draft 1990 electoral roll, as there has been massive movement of voters from one constituency to another without the voter’s knowledge or consent, as well as the registration of phantom voters.
After the inspection period, the Election Commission would then prepare the final Electoral Roll, certify in the government gazette the date on which the new electoral roll would come into use.
From past experience, the Election Commission would require two months from the end of the two-week public inspection of the draft electoral roll before it could certify in the government gazette that the new final Electoral Roll is ready for use.
This means that if the draft 1990 Electoral Roll incorporating the March voter’s registration is put up for public inspection in early May, the earliest the new 1990 Electoral Roll could be certified would be mid-July.
Although the Election Commission could try to speed up this process, I just do not see how it could bring out the 1990 Electoral Roll in time of May or June general elections.
The next alternative period for the dissolution of Parliament and the holding of general elections is the August school vacation.
Parliament would then dissolved in the second half or July and the Barisan Nasional would be able to use the new 1998 Electoral Roll.
This would mean however that there would be another meeting of Parliament for ten days from June 11 to June 22.
Be that as it may, it is most likely that parliamentary would be dissolved and general elections held in the next hundred days.
Gerakan power-struggle in Penang enters a new phase with Gim Hwa and Cheng Teik entering the fray to chip away at Chong Eu’s image and credibility
Two Gerakan leaders made strange statements in the press today.
The State Gerakan Chairman, Datuk Tan Gim Hwa has publicly ordered party members to stop further public attacks on the Chief Minister, Dr. Lim Chong Eu, while one of the potential successors to Chong Eu, Gerakan mp for Nibong Tebal, Dr. Goh Cheng Teik, said that “whatever his (Chong Eu) faults may be, his successes far outweigh his failings”.
Both statements by Gim Hwa and Cheng Teik gave the initial impression that they have come out in defence of Dr. Lim Chong Eu, who was publicly accused by Gerakan State and local officials of being guilty of nepotism and gross breach of party discipline.
But a closer study of both statements shows that what Gim Hwa and Cheng Teik has done was to fan such Gerakan attacks on Chong Eu, although couched in the form of advice to members to desist from any further such attacks.
The signifcanca of Gim Hwa’s statement is his implicit blessing on all previous Gerakan attacks on Chong Eu, which he has not condemned, only than there should be no further public attacks. The significance of Cheng Teik’s statement is the public acknowledgement of Chong Eu’s ‘faults’ – the first time that any top Gerakan national leader has gone on public record about Chong Eu’s ‘failings’.
Clearly, while chocked in the language of urging a stop to the Gerakan grass-roots attacks on Chong Eu, both Gim Hwa and Cheng Teik have entered the fray with a common design to chip away at the standing, image and credibility of Chong Eu as Penang Chief Minister. Both of them are sending out one common message: that the Gerakan grassroots were not wrong in their attacks on Chong Eu, but there should now be a respite.