Kit Siang proposes meeting of DAP and PAS leaders on how to save democracy

Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at a ‘Towards Tanjung Two’ Dinner in Sitiawan on 2nd June 1990 at 9 p.m.

Kit Siang proposes meeting of DAP and PAS leaders on how to save democracy

Gerakan President, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, has put up in his Bruas constituency the black Gerakan poster, depicting me as wearing a songkok, perched on a rocket, secretly co-operating with PAS President, Fadzil Nor, with the words ‘DAP and PAS Join Hands For Islamic State’.

I call this the black Gerakan poster for two reasons: firstly, because of its black backdrop; and secondly, because of the ‘black’ and dishonest motives of Keng Yaik to tell the big lie that the DAP wants to create an Islamic State by co-operating with PAS.

Keng Yaik must be very worried about his chances of re-election in Bruas if he has to rush these black Gerakan posters to Bruas.

In actual fact, Keng Yaik has good reason to be worried, not only about his own chances of re-election in Bruas, but about the ability of Gerakan to survive as a political party in the next general elections.

This is why Keng Yaik is trying desperately to stave Gerakan from disaster in the next general elections by embarking on a campaign, not to convince the voters that they should vote Gerakan, but to frighten them from voting for DAP by telling lies about the Islamic State issue.

I actually want to thank Keng Yaik for his outrageous lie about the so-called DAP-PAS secret meeting in Jakarta. If Keng Yaik had come out with such a lie a few days before polling day in the next general elections, the DAP will have great difficulty to countering it.

As it is, with the long and laborious counter-offensive launched by the DAP in the past six weeks to expose Keng Yaik’s lies about the secret DAP-PAS meeting in Jakarta to create an Islamic State, the DAP has achieved the following objectives:

Firstly, convincingly proved that Keng Yaik was blatantly telling a lie in his allegation of secret Jakarta meeting;

Secondly, prepared the public mind for more lies from the Gerakan, MCA and other Barisan Nasional parties against the DAP when the next general elections get nearer;

Thirdly, explained to the public that it is not possible for PAS to establish an Islamic State because:

i. PAS cannot get two-thirds parliamentary majority of at least 120 MPs to support the amendment of the Malaysian Constitution to establish an Islamic State – for as Deputy Prime Minister, Ghaffar Baba, pointed out that even if PAS wins all the 96 predominantly – Malay constituencies (which is impossible), PAS would still be 24 MPs short of the two-third majority;

ii. No Islamic State can be established in Malaysia without the support and consent of the chinese, Indians, Kadazans and Ibans, as well as the non-Islamic religions, and such support and consent would never be forthcoming – when even the majority of the Malays are opposed to an Islamic State.

Fourthly, explained that the Islamic State issue is a ‘false’ issue; and what the people have to fear is not PAS’ Islamic State, but UMNO’s Islamisation policy;

Fifthly, explained that the real issue faced by the people in Malaysia in the next general elections in 75 days’ time is not Islamic State, but whether democracy could be saved!

I welcome the recent motion adopted by the PAS General Assembly giving a mandate to the PAS leadership to have discussions with the DAP.

There is no doubt that what the UMNO, MCA and Gerakan fear most is that DAP, Semangat 45 and PAS could agree on a common minimum programme to save democracy, for without democracy, all political opposition parties will perish in Malaysia.

I will not ask PAS to renounce its Islamic State objective, for this is virtually to ask PAS to close shop. However, PAS leaders should be aware of the multi-racial and multi-religious reality in Malaysia which does not permit the establishment of an Islamic State in Malaysia.

If PAS is prepared to set aside its Islamic State objective, and work with other Opposition parties and groups to save democracy and restore human rights, this will be an important step to put parliamentary democracy in Malaysia on a firm and healthy footing in the 1990s.

For this reason, I propose that DAP and PAS leaders should meet to discuss how democracy in Malaysia could be saved and the human rights or Malaysians restored in the 1990s.