Speech by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the ‘Towards Tanjong 2’ Lunch held in Penang on Sunday, 22nd July 1990 at 1.30 p.m.
Chong Eu only shows his ignorance by commenting on things he knows little about
Penang Chief Minister, Dr. Lim Chong Eu, said that the Sabah state general elections results show that the people of Sabah reject the DAP, as DAP lost even in our strongholds like Sandakan and Tawau.
I advise Chong Eu not to show his ignorance by commenting on things he knows little about.
It is understandable that Chong Eu and the Gerakan leaders are trying to take maximum comfort from the Sabah state general elections results, and extropolate that in the next general elections, the DAP will also be wiped out in Penang and the Malaysian parliamentary elections.
The Gerakan in Penang and throughout the whole country must be in very desperate straits when it had to try to seek comfort from the Sabah state general elections, especially when the conditions in Sabah general elections are most unique.
Chong Eu said that the Sabah state general elections show that there is no place for Opposition in Sabah, and by extension, in Malaysia.
Chong Eu cannot be more wrong. The Sabah state general elections results is in fact a victory for the Opposition forces in Sabah, for more than anything else, the people of Sabah voted for the PBS and returned it to power with more than two-thirds majority because of their opposition to the Barisan Nasional Federal Government.
This is why Dr. Mahathir Mohamed did not say a word about the PBS victory in the Sabah state general elections, because he knows its real meaning and significance. It was a vote against Dr. Mahathir by the people of Sabah.
When Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan dissolved the Sabah State Assembly at the end of May, Dr. Mahathir had said that whatever the Sabah elections outcome, it would be a victory for the Barisan Nasional, as both PBS and USNO are in the Barisan Nasional.
I have no doubt that if USNO captured Sabah state power, Dr. Mahathir would have immediately sent his congratulations to Tun Mustapha, and that he would not be so wordless as at present with regard to the PBS victory in winning 36 out of 48 seats.
When the DAP fielded the candidates in seven constituencies in the Sabah state general elections, we knew fully well that we will not win a single seat, and may lose deposits in many, if the voters of Sabah have any doubt that the PBS would be returned to power with handsome majorities.
This is because the first priority issue in their minds is to ensure that the PBS Government is returned to power. It is only if the Sabah voters had no doubt in their minds about the PBS returning to power with comfortable majorities that the DAP candidates stand a chance of a breakthrough in the Sabah state assembly.
This was the message the DAP sought to give in the Sabah state general elections, that the PBS would have no problem in winning power again with a two-third majority – and that in such circumstances, having a DAP presence in the Sabah state assembly would be good not only to the people of Sabah, but to the PBS Government as well.
I had also predicted that in the last few days, the people could be panicked into the fear that the PBS might not win power after all, stampeding all Sabah voters to vote for the PBS.
This was what happened, for the events of the last few days were interpreted as further high-handed actions by the Barisan Nasional Federal Government against the PBS, and the need for the people of Sabah to rally behind the PBS in those circumstances.
The Gerakan cannot be more wrong when they hope that the Sabah state general elections would be an indicator of the trend in the national general elections.
The Sabah state general elections results have no bearing whatsoever on the results of the next general elections. The only indicator is that the Barisan Nasional Federal Government will continue to face a very strong united Sabah people who want a redressal and readjuments of their constitutional rights and status.
However, I will not prevent the Gerakan Chief Minister and the other Gerakan leaders from continuing to nurse hopes that the Sabah state general elections will give them a new lease of life in Penang.