Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the ‘Towards Tanjung 2’ Dinner organised by the Sungei Siput DAP Branch held in Sungei Siput on Friday, 18th May 1990 at 7 p.m.
The biggest problem in Malaysia is not the Islamic State objective of PAS but the Islamisation programme of UMNO Baru
Deputy Prime Minister, Ghafar Baba, said in Sungai Rambai, Malacca yesterday that it is impossible for PAS to create an Islamic State in Malaysia.
Ghafar said PAS’s goal for an Islamic State was a mere dream, for even if PAS were to win all the 96 predominantly-Malay constituencies, PAS would still be short of 24 seats for the two-thirds majority required to pass any amendment to the Constitution.
I seldom agree with Ghafar, but on this point, I fully agree with him. This is why I am prepared to meet with the PAS leaders, including its President, Fadzil Noor and Deputy President, Haji Abdul Hadi Awang to explain to them not only the DAP’s opposition to an Islamic State for a multi-racial and multi-religious Malaysia, but why it is impossible for an Islamic State to be established in Malaysia.
I would like very much to know how the PAS leaders think they could establish an Islamic State in Malaysia, without the support of the Chinese, Indians, Kadazans and Ibans – and when a majority of Malays themselves are opposed to an Islamic State.
PAS has only one MP in Parliament today, and I do not expect PAS to have more than a dozen MPs in the next Parliament. It is clearly impossible for 12 PAS MPs to amend the Constitution to establish an Islamic State, when this would require the support of at least 120 MPs.
I want to make it very clear that the DAP’s opposition to an Islamic State is not because DAP is anti-Islam, but because we believe that the secular basis of the Malaysian Constitution is the best and only basis for nation-building for a plural society like Malaysia. DAP fully respects Islam as the religion of the nation as provided in the Constitution.
MCA and Gerakan leaders know the political arithmetic as spelt out by Ghafar Baba, which shows that it is impossible for PAS to establish an Islamic State in Malaysia. However, MCA and Gerakan leaders want to create the Islamic State scare to frighten the Chinese voters, as in their present stage of political bankruptcy, this is the only way for them to get votes from the Chinese.
The real problem in Malaysia is not the Islam State objective of PAS but the Islamisation programme of UMNO Baru. This is why the Selangor Islamic Law Administration Enactment was passed by the Selangor Assembly, although PAS does not have a single Assemblyman in Selangor. This is also the reason why the Selangor Barisan Nasional Government would not amend the Enactment to meet the legitimate rights and wishes of the non-Muslims.
It is against this background of Islamisation policies and programmes of the Barisan Nasional that the Malaysian Consultative Council of Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism and Sikhism had to launch a nation-wide campaign early this year to protest against the imposition of any Islamic laws on non-Muslim Malaysians.