Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the meeting of the DAP Tanjung 2 strategy meeting at Penang DAP Hqrs on Sunday, 13th May 1990 at 4 p.m.
The ‘secret DAP-PAS Jakarta meeting’ tactic would have caused the DAP enormous and irreparable damage if Keng Yaik had used it three or five days before polling in the next general elections
In formulating the strategy for DAP’s Tanjung 2 project, we must not only discuss the strategy we are to adopt to get the people to support the Tanjung 2 project, but also the tactics and tricks that the Gerakan, the MCA and UMNO Baru will use to defeat the Tanjung 2 project.
In this connection, the ‘secret DAP-PAS Jakarta meeting’ tactic of the Gerakan President, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, should be an object lesson to all DAP leaders throughout the country as to how we are to react to such lies and falsehoods calculated to destroy public confidence in the DAP’s image, credibility and integrity.
The ‘secret DAP-PAS Jakarta meeting’ is in fact a most vicious and dangerous tactic of the Gerakan to counter and defeat the DAP’s Tanjung 2 project.
It is clear that the ‘secret DAP-PAS Jakarta meeting’ tactic was carefully conceived and planned to put the DAP in a no-win situation.
After Keng Yaik had told his lies about the secret DAP-PAS meeting in Jakarta, how is the DAP to react?
When Keng Yaik’s lies were first reported, even DAP members were influenced for they could not believe that a Cabinet Minister could be so irresponsible as to concoct such lies
One reaction is for the DAP to dismiss the whole story as a ‘tall tale’ not worth attention and notice.
But can the DAP afford to take this attitude, and assume that all Malaysians would dismiss Keng Yaik’s allegation of a DAP-PAS secret meeting in Jakarta as lies?
When Keng Yaik’s lies about the Jakarta meeting were first reported, over radio, television and the press, not only the ordinary people, but many DAP members were influenced, for they could not believe that a Cabinet Minister could be so irresponsible as to concoct and tell such lies.
If the DAP’s reactions to Keng Yaik lies about the Jakarta meeting was just a simple denial, saying that nobody in his right senses would believe his lies, Keng Yaik would have succeeded in planting doubts in the minds of the people, as well as DAP members, that there may be some basis in his allegations.
This is because Keng Yaik’s real motive in his ‘DAP-PAS Jakarta meeting’ tactic is to impute that the DAP leaders are guilty of a most dishonourable and heinous betrayal of the rights of the Chinese in agreeing to support the Islamic State objective of PAS.
The Gerakan leaders believe that their only weapon against the DAP in the nest general elections is the Islamic State scare, for the Islamic State issue is one which could instantly arouse the emotional fears of the people, without recourse to to rational thinking.
This is why in the recent by-elections, the Barisan Nasional election workers could frighten the Chinese voters by just saying that an Islamic State means that the Chinese cannot eat pork.
The more sophisticated voters would not be so easily influenced, for they would first consider whether the DAP, on the basis of the record of the political sacrifices of the DAP leaders for their political beliefs, could agree to an Islamic State; or whether it is possible to create an Islamic State in Malaysia under the present circumstances.
But there will be a very large section of the Chinese who will react emotionally to the Islamic State scare, without weighing whether there is any basis to such an allegation.
If all that the DAP could do is to deny, while Keng Yaik stoutly maintain that he has evidence, of the Jakarta meeting, Keng Yaik would have succeeded in making people doubt the DAP’s political intention and undermine the DAP’s credibility and integrity.
The Gerakan will go round the country and say that if the DAP had no plans for such secret meeting with PAS Jakarta, why is it we could not disprove it. This will seem logical and sensible to some people, although if they had given serious thought to it, they would have realized that this is a nonsensical argument.
Can Keng Yaik disprove an allegation that he has plans to murder Dr. Lim Chong Eu?
It is not possible for any person to disprove allegations that he has no plans to do something. For instance, a person who is alleged of planning to commit murder or planning to cheat somebody cannot disprove such an accusation. It is for the person who make the accusation to prove this charge.
If I accuse Keng Yaik of planning to murder Dr. Lim Chong Eu, and I ask Keng Yaik to disprove it, and can Keng Yaik disprove the accusation? Keng Yaik will not be able to disprove such an allegation. Unfortunately, many people would not reason this far about the secret DAP-PAS meeting in Jakarta, especially on an emotional issue like the Islamic State.
The second reaction would be to challenge Keng Yaik to produce the proof of his allegations, failing which to publicly call him a liar further challenge him to sue for slander and defamation, so that Keng Yaik would be forced to either produce in court his evidence of the secret Jakarta meeting or be proved to be telling lies.
The drawbacks of this second reaction is that the Gerakan leaders would be able to go round claiming that the DAP is being very personal, that I am being very petty and a dictator who can criticize others while others cannot criticize me, that I want to suppress freedom of speech, and to abuse the process of the courts.
Keng Yaik will also strike a pitiable pose and go round the country to invite sympathy for the attacks on him, even claiming that what is wrong with having a meeting between DAP and PAS!
The Gerakan ‘brain-trust’ comprising the Gerakan Deputy President, Kerk Choo Ting, Gerakan National Youth Leader, Dr. Koh Tsu koon and the Director of the Gerakan Publicity Bureau, Dr. Kang Chin Sang, had come out with a brilliant tactic to character-assassinate the DAP and PAS leaders, where there is no satisfactory way for the DAP to defend itself.
May be, Keng Yaik and the Gerakan ‘brain-trust’ never expected that we will press this issue so far, as to print posters and to go to court. But there are actions of self-defence forced on the DAP, in order to expose the lies of Keng Yaik about the Dap-PAS secret meeting in Jakarta.
I will not respond to Keng Yaik’s name-calling and abuses
When I called Keng Yaik ‘an inveterate, compulsive and incorrigible liar’, I had not intended to be personal, but to exposeKeng Yaik’s lies about the Jakarta meeting.
It is not my political style to be personal and indulge in name-calling and abuses, I understand that at this morning’s Federal Territory Gerakan Assembly. Keng Yaik called me a ‘political rascal’. Keng Yaik wants to turn politics into name-calling and abuses. I am not going to respond to such personal abuses and name-calling, which degrades politics and political leaders.
If he feels that I have defamed him for calling him a liar, and putting up posted with the words ‘Keng Yaik – You Are A Liar’, he should sue me. This is the whole object of my exercise, for I want Keng Yaik to produce the proof of the secret Jakarta meeting, which he had failed so far to do!
If Keng Yaik had produced this ‘secret DAP-PAS meeting in Jakarta’ tactic three or five days before polling day in the next general elections, it would have done enormous and irreparable damage to the DAP, for we would have no time to counter the lies and clear the air.
There are four reasons why we are taking such a hard and strong line on Keng Yaik for his lies about the Jakarta secret meeting. They are:
Firstly, to expose the lies of Keng Yaik about the secret Jakarta meeting;
Secondly, to teach Keng Yaik a lesson for telling such lies;
Thirdly, to warn other Barisan Nasional leaders of the serious consequences of concocting and spreading lies; and
Fourthly, to forewarn Malaysians that they should expect more lies and falsehoods from the Barisan Nasional leaders on the Islamic State issue, with the approach of the general elections, – and that they should not believe the claims and allegations of the Barisan Nasional leaders aimed at misleading voters.