Speech by DAP Secretary-General, MP for Tanjung and Assemblyman for Padang Kota, Lim Kit Siang, on the Motion of Thanks for the Royal Address in the Dewan Rakyat on Wednesday, 5th December 1990
If Barisan Nasional Government regards itself as Government for only the 52 per cent of the electorate who voted for it in recent general elections, then it should stop collecting taxes and dues from the other 48 per cent who did not vote for it
I rise to participate in the debate on the Motion of Thanks to His Majesty, the Yang di Pertuan Agong, for his Gracious Speech at the official opening of the first meeting of the first session of the Eighth Parliament yesterday.
The Yang di Pertuan Agong made reference to the recent eighth general elections in the country. His Majesty said: “I am very happy that the recent General Elections was held in a peaceful and orderly manner… The right to vote is the foundation of parliamentary democracy as practiced in this country. The fundamental freedom of the people will continue to be guaranteed by the Constitution and protected by out judicial system. It is important therefore that our democratic system be preserved and defended.”
I agree with His Majesty that the general elections was by and large conducted in a peaceful and orderly manner, and for this, we must pay tribute not only to the police for their role, but also to the voters who could overcome the politics of fear and intimidation of the Barisan Nasional threatening chaos and even bloodshed if the Opposition had won.
The Royal Address represents the policy speech of the government of the day, and as such, it is equally important to look at what was claimed and what was committed. In this case, it I most significant that the Barisan Nasional Government dare not claim that the recent general elections was ‘free, fair, clean and honest’.
Recent general elections not ‘free, fair, clean and honest’ but the dirtiest and most irresponsible in Malaysian history
I still remember that when I met the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed, in the Prime Ministers Office in early July to discuss the invitation and the terms of reference of a Commonwealth Observer Mission should not come to just observe what happened on poling day, i.e. the casting and counting of votes, but should observe the entire election campaign process to determine whether the general elections meet the four criteria of being ‘free, fair, clean and honest’.
Dr. Mahathir took a pen and wrote down these four words on his writing pad, stating that he agreed with these four criteria, claiming that all the general elections held in Malaysia before had complied with these four criteria of being ‘free, fair, clean and honest’.
The next day, when Dr. Mahathir was in Malacca during one of his numerous pre-election tours, the Prime Minister publicly mentioned that he had seen me and that I had asked that the Commonwealth Observer Mission should ensure that the general elections in Malaysia would be ‘free, fair, clean and honest’, and he declared that the Government had nothing to hide on these four yardsticks.
But the general elections held on Oct. 21 had contravened all these four criteria, and was not only not free, fair, clean and honest, it was the dirtiest and most irresponsible general elections campaign of the ruling parties in Malaysian history in the past 33 years.
DAP calls for the Commonwealth Observer Mission Report to be tabled in Parliament as a Command Paper
This must be the reason why up to now the Prime Minister has kept the report of the Commonwealth Observer Mission under ‘lock and key’, refusing to make it public. If the report of the Commonwealth Observer Mission is laudatory and praiseworthy of the recent general elections as being ‘free, fair, clean and honest’, the Government would have released them the instant it received the report.
The Malaysian people are entitled to the report of the Commonwealth Observer Mission, because they were invited to Malaysia to observe the Malaysian general elections at public expense. I call on the Government to table the report of the Commonwealth Observer Mission as a Command Paper in the Dewan Rakyat, so that MPs as well as the public could have access and debate it.
If the Government is not happy with the Report of the Commonwealth Observer Mission, as had been announced by the Prime Minister, then the Government can table a White Paper on the Government’s Rebuttal or Reply to the Commonwealth Observer Mission.
Let Malaysia not be the first country in the world which invited an Commonwealth Observer Mission for its general elections, and banned the publication of the Report of the Observer Mission, using the Official Secrets Act to suppress it!
Election Watch has also concluded that the general elections was not ‘free, fair, clean and honest’
Any independent, fair-minded and impartial observer of the recent general elections, whether a Malaysian or a foreigner, can only conclude that it was not ‘free, fair, clean and honest’.
The six-man Election Watch, headed by former Lord President Tun Suffian and comprising eminent Malaysians like Tan Sri Ahmad Nordin, Raja Aziz Addruse, Dr. Chandra Muzaffar, Dato Param Cumaraswamy and Chooi Mun Sou, had concluded in 46-page report that the 1990 general elections was only free so far as ‘Parties which contested had no problem in fielding their chosen candidates’ and that ‘the vast majority of voters who wanted to vote were not prevented from doing so’.
Otherwise, the Election Watch had important qualifications that the general elections was free because of the following reasons:
1. Many eligible voters could not find their names on the electoral rolls used at the elections.
2. The new system of counting votes at polling stations (instead of at a central counting centre as previously done) caused voters to be justifiably apprehensive that the way the voters of an area voted would be known. This negates the requirement for confidentiality basic to the democratic process.
3. Postal voters from the police and armed forces might not have felt free to exercise their freedom of choice, given their circumstances and the absence of supervision by any official of the Election Commission.
4. There were cases of direct intimidation of candidates and of campaigners.
5. There was subtle intimidation of the electorate who were warned of the possible recurrence of the incidents of May 1969 if the incumbent parties were not returned with a two-thirds majority.
Measured against any yardstick, the recent general elections have failed to qualify as a ‘free, fair, clean and honest one’. In fact, the recent general elections was the dirtiest in the history of elections in Malaysia!
The Barisan Nasional, and in particular, UMNO was qualify of the triple sins of the politics of money and corruption, the politics of fear and blackmail, and the politics of lies an falsehoods.
UMNO must have spent $300 million in the 10 days of the general elections campaign – or $30 million a day!
In the recent general elections, UMNO made full use of 3Ms, namely Money, Media and government Machinery, to wage a most one-sided, unfair, dirty and dishonest campaign.
It has been estimated that UMNO alone spent some $300 million in the 10-day general election campaign – or $30 million a day!
On the eve of polling day, UMNO used money to buy voters and even polling and counting agents election workers to defeat Opposition candidates.
Voters in different constituencies were paid different rates ranging from $50 or $200 to buy their votes by UMNO. In Gua Musang, however, voters were even given crisp $1,000 notes in an attempt to topple the Semangat 46 President, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.
DAP calls for the establishment of a Royal Commission on Inquiry as to whether 1990 General Elections is free, fair, clean and honest
The Prime Minister had accused the Opposition of spending colossal sums of money for the general elections campaign, suggesting that we had dubious sources of funding from outside the country.
The DAP challenges the Barisan Nasional Government to establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the 1990 General Elections should have as one of its specific terms of reference to inquire into the politics of money and corruption during the election campaign.
Such a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the 1990 General Elections should have as one of its specific terms of reference to inquire into the politics of money and corruption during the election campaign.
The Royal Commission should trace the election expenditures of the political parties and candidates, compute the total election expenses incurred by each party, their sources of financing, and most important of all, whether such financing had any external sources.
The DAP is prepared to open all it books and election expenditures to the public examination of such a Royal Commission of Inquiry, and I have no doubt that the other Opposition parties would support such a proposal, for we are poor political parties who have nothing to hide.
Such a Royal Commission should comprise equal number of Barisan and Opposition members, headed by a Chairman, to conduct a full and through probe into the factors which had caused the 1990 general elections o be so unfree, unfair, unclean and dishonest.
The question is whether the Barisan Nasional and in particular UMNO, which is trying to distract attention from the hundreds of millions it had spent in the recent general elections by making accusations against the Opposition, is prepared to subject itself to a full and thorough public probe on its elections expenditures as well as its sources of financing to prove that it was not guilty of the politics of money and corruption.
The election law limits the election expenses of a Parliamentary candidate to $50,000 and a State Assembly candidate to $30,000. Only the Opposition observes such a legal limit, while to the Barisan Nasional candidates, such a limit is not enough for their first day of expenditure in the election campaign!
Sometimes, this politics of money and corruption is coupled with the politics of fear to ensure greater impact, and in the Dindings and Lower Perak area, voters were given money on polling eve with the specific message that they should use them to buy rice and provisions in case there was trouble or May 13 on polling day.
The most unashamed and blatant use of the politics of fear and blackmail in Malaysian electoral history
Another important reason why the recent general elections was so unfree, unclean and dishonest is because of the most unashamed and blatant exploitation of the politics of fear and blackmail by the Barisan Nasional and UMNI in Malaysian electoral history.
Five days before polling, in his Johore Bahru ceramah on Oct.16, Dr. Mahathir raised the ghost of May 13 by suggesting that if the Barisan Nasional failed to retain its two-thirds majority, then there would be a repetition of May 13.
On 19th Oct. the Barisan Nasional and UMNO took out a full page advertisement in the Utusan Malaysia and on 20th Oct. a full-page colour advertisement in the Chinese daily, Nanyang Siang Pao, to create fear and panic among the voters.
In the Utusan Malaysia, the advertisement was under the heading ‘Sokong Membawa Rebah’, while in Nanyang Siang Pao it was under the heading ‘Recollection of History’, but both carried the same picture depicting bloodshed, violence, arson and carnage.
The visual impact of the picture of manyfold greater than the wordings under the picture, which immediately conveyed the message that if the Barisan Nasional and UMNO lose in the general elections on Oct 21, there would be another May 13 of bloodshed, violence, arson and carnage.
Although the picture of violence, despite the battle of Malacca between the Portuguese fleet and Malays, its intent was very clear, for it wanted to cast Semangat 46 as traitors to the Malay race like those responsible for the fall of the Malacca Malay Empire, while Malaysian Chinese were cast in the role of the Portuguese of that period.
The wordings used in Utusan Malaysia was modified and altered so that this same picture of bloodshed, violence, arson and carnage served the purpose of sending different messages to different communities who read the two newspaper, but with one common conclusion – that of impending communal violence and conflagration.
I cannot think of an advertisement which is more racist or inflammatory in its imagery and visual impact in the history of Malaysian media. This advertisement must be awarded the most racist and inflammatory in Malaysian history.
I believe that no Opposition leaders who had been detained under the Internal Security Act in the past for fanning communal hatred and ill-will, had ever said or suggested anything which was 10 per cent as provocative, inflammatory and inciting as this full-page advertisement.
Call on Dr. Mahathir to explain whether he had authorized the racist and highly inflammatory full-page advertisement on bloodshed, violence, arson and carnage on poling eve.
But did the Special Branch take any action against the people responsible for such a communal and inflammatory advertisement, who described themselves as ‘Iklan ditaja oleh Rakyat Selangor Darul Ehsan yang akan terus memilih kepimpinan Perdana Menteri kita, YAB Dato Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed dan juga akan terus menyokong kepimpinan Dato Menteri Besar kita, YAB Tan Sri Hj. Muhamed bin Hj. Muhd taib’.
If the Police is not prepared or unable to discharge its duty against the sponsors of this racist and highly inflammatory advertisement, then let there be a Royal Commission of Inquiry to ferret out the real identity of the advertisers – and I have no doubt that it would be traced to the very highest levels of leadership in the UMNO and Government!
I want to ask Dr. Mahathir point-blank eh\\whether he had authorized this racist and highly inflammatory polling-eve advertisement about bloodshed, violence, arson and carnage, and to explain as Homo Minister, why the Police had not taken any action against the sponsors of this advertisement.
Politics of lies and falsehoods to panic and stampede the Malays to vote UMNO to save Malay race and Islam
Not content with the politics of money and corruption and the politics of fear and blackmail, Barisan Nasional and UMNO resorted to the most blatant exploitation of the politics of lies and falsehoods to panic and stampede the Malays to return and vote for UMNO purportedly to save the Malay race and the Islamic religion from destruction.
Through its monopoly of the electronic and printed media, in particular the television channels and the Bahasa Malaysia media, Semangat 46 President, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, was depicted as having sold out the Malay honour and race and betrayed the Islamic religion.
As proof, the television channels kept showing Tengku Razaleigh with the Kadazan headgear when he visited Sabah on Oct. 18, alleging that it bore the symbol of the cross, and was final and ultimate proof that Tengku Razaleigh had sold out Islam to Christianity in Sabah.
Both the television and the Bahasa Malaysia media incited Malay communal feelings and religious sensitivities by alleging that Malays throughout the land were rising up in anger against Tengku Razaleigh for such betrayal.
For instance, Utusan Malaysia and Berita Harian of Oct. 19 carried a huge photograph of Tengku Razaleigh with the Kadazan headgear with the so-called cross, which was reported until polling two days later, to reinforce the incitement of Malay communal sentiments about the betrayal of the Malay race and Islamic religion.
Without access to the media, in particular to television, there was no way for Semangat 46 to counter these lies and falsehoods in the last days of the campaign and prevent the Malays who were predisposed to vote Semangat 46 and GAGASAN RAKYAT from being panicked and stampeded back to the UMNO fold.
Tengku Razaleigh would have been detained under the ISA if he had used picture of Dr. Mahathir’s wearing the Kadazan tengolok to campaign that the Prime Minister had sold out Malay honour and race and betrayed Islam to Christianity
There is no doubt that the utterly irresponsible and dishonourable final campaign of UMNO, through its monopoly of the electronic and Bahasa Malaysia printed media, in the last three days of the campaign using the Kadazan tengolok to spread the lies that Tengku Razaleigh had sold out the Malay honour and race and betrayed Islam was chiefly responsible for UMNO’s ability to win 71 seats and to deny Semangat 46 victory in at least 30 Parliamentary seats.
Yes Dr. Mahathir had won, but utterly without honour. This is why I had said that the Barisan Nasional and UMNO victory in the 1990 general elections is a victory without honour because it was won through lies, falsehoods, deceit, fears, blackmail, corruption and bribery!
Dr. Mahathir and those responsible for the electronic and Bahasa Malaysia media knew that the Kadazan headgear was not a Christian headgear. As Tan Sri Archbishop Vendargon and Bishop Dr. Danis Dutton on behalf of the Christian Federation of Malaysia said in a joint statement on 19th October 1990, the headgear worn by Tengku Razaleigh was not a Christian headgear, but a headgear presented by the Kadazan community as a sign of welcome.
In fact, the so-called cross on the Kadazan headgear is tapioca shoot (pucuk ubi) and most headgears of this sort are made by the Bajau community which is largely Muslim.
Dr. Mahathir knew this. Those responsible for the electronic and Bahasa Malaysia media knew this, as for 27 years since Sabah’s joining of Malaysia, both Federal Government and UMNO leaders who visited Sabah had been honoured with this Kadazan headgear.
In fact, a few days before Tengku Razaleigh visited Sabah, Dr. Mahathir had worn the same Kadazan headgear with the so-called cross when the Prime Minsiter visited Sabah.
I have here the photograph of Dr. Mahathir wearing this Kadazan headgear, with a very bin sign which looks like a cross. If Tengku Razaleigh’s tengkolok bore a cross, than Dr. Mahathir had also worn a cross. If Tengku Razaleigh had sold out the Malay honour and race and betrayed Islam to Christianity, then Dr. Mahathir had sold out and betrayed even earlier.
Why did Dr. Mahathir allow such a evil and malicious campaign to be conducted when he knows that it was completely untrue and baseless?
I will like to pose this hypothesis. If immediately after Dr. Mahathir had visited Sabah, Tengku Razaleigh had used the photograph of Dr. Mahathir wearing the Kadazan tengolok, and had launched a country-wide campaign to accuse Dr. Mahathir of selling out the Malay honour and race and betrayed Islam to Christianity in Sabah, using all available facilities, I am sure Tengku Razaleigh might have been detained under the Internal Security Act for inciting inter-racial and inter-religious ill-will and hatred.
Dr. Mahathir will never allow Tengku Razaleigh and Semangat 46 to carry out a campaign based on lies and falsehoods and calculated to incite communal and religious sensitivies – Although he and the entire UMNO machinery used precisely this campaign against Semangat 46.
The Barisan Nasional and UMNO should be thoroughly ashamed of themselves for they were prepared to resort to lies and falsehoods to win the general elections, regardless of the enormous damage and long-term repercussions to nation building.
For instance, inter-religious understanding suffered a grave setback when in the general electi0ons, Dr. Mahathir twisted the request of the PBS State Government to have a local Sabah station by alloging that it was meant to spread Christianity.
UMNO was also responsible for the highly mischievous and malicious campaign disseminating the fake and concocied letter from the Pope to the Sabah Chief Minister congratulating him for his efforts to spread Christianity and encouraging him to destroy Islam.
It was UMNO again which was responsible for the dissemination of a translation on of a completely fake an concocted DAP internal circular alleging that the final objective of the DAP was to destroy the Malays so that the Chinese could take over Malaysia and oppress the Malays.
The whole objective of such despicable and dishonourable politics of lies and falsehoods was to make the Malays panic that the Malay race and Islamic religion was under attack, and that the only salvation lies in voting for UMNO.
Is Dr. Mahathir prepared to tender a public and unconditional apology to Tengku Razaleigh for such malicious and irreligious campaign of lies and falsehoods over the Kadazan tengolok?
UMNO leaders claim that they want to instill Islamic and good moral values in the society and among the young generation of Malaysians. How can they expect to have credibility when their entire general elections campaign and victory was based on such immoral and unethical practices, as the politics of money and corruption, the politics of fear and blackmail, and the politics of lies and falsehoods.
Was the Barisan Nasional Government and the UMNO leaders the humility and decency to admit that they had, through television and the Bahasa Malaysia printed media, maligned Tengku Razaleigh by falsely portraying him as having sold out the Malay honour and race an Islam because of the Kadazan tengolok, and is Dr. Mahathir prepared to tender a public and unconditional apology to Tengku Razaleigh in this House when winding up the debate for such malicious and irreligious campaign of lies and falsehoods?
I do not think so, and this is why the DAP calls for a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the 1990 General Elections, for never before in Malaysian history has the general elections been so dirty and dishonourable.
There were of course other lies, falsehoods and disinformation during the 10-day campaign during the recent general elections.
Release of Lorrain’s BMP letters: Barisan Nasional black operation
A subject which the Barisan Nasional had clearly planned well in advance was the so-called release of letters by the former Bumiputra Malaysia Finance Chairman, Lorrain Osman, at the height of the elections campaign.
New Straits Times of Oct. 17 carried a front-page report under the headline ‘BMP; Lorrain blames Razaleigh’ with the London dateline which started with the following:
“Former Bumiputera Malaysia Finance Limited Chairman Lorrain Esme Osman today broke the silence he maintained throughout his five-year imprisonment here and accused two persons – Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and Ibrahim Jalil – of being responsible for the BMF scandal.
“He alleged that the two men ‘more then anyone else were responsible for my imprisonment, one by his lies, the other by his silence and lies.’…
“Lorrain said: “It was Razaleigh more than anyone who was responsible for what happened in Hong Kong to BMF and Carrian’.”
Lorrain also released four letters to implicate Razaleigh Hamzah as the main culprit in the $2.5 billion BMF scandal.
What is interesting is that the statement allegedly released by Lorraine Osman was signed on Oct 15, released to the Malaysian press owned or controlled by UMNO in London on Oct 16, and published in Malaysia dour days before pulling on Oct 17.
The timing was so perfect that it must have been a ‘black’ operation by Barisan Nasional planned well in advance with the sole political purpose of trying to discredit Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and Semangat 46 in the general elections.
The question that comes immediately to mind is how Lorrain Osman, the longest-serving prisoner in Britain on remand, who was transferred to the high-security Brixton prison from the Pentonville Prison two weeks earlier, could smuggle out his statement and the four letters implicating Tengku Razaleigh to be released to the Malaysian press from London to influence the outcome of the general elections.
According to the Utusan Malaysia report of the same day, ‘Lorrain membuat pendedahan-pendedahan tersebut didalam satu kenyataan khasnya bertarikh semalam yang diedarkan kepada para wartawan Malaysia disini melalui wakil peguamnya pagi ini. Wakil Lorrain itu juga menunjukkan kepada para wartawan empat salinan dokumen untuk menyokong tuduhan-tuduhan yang dibuat oleh Lorrain itu.’
Lorrain Osman denied releasing or knowledge of the four BMF scandal letters allegedly put out by him at the height of general elections
However, the plot thickens and the mystery deepens with a Bernama report from London last week on the High Court hearings of Lorrain’s fourth habeas corpus application to fight of extradition proceedings by the Hong Kong government for the former BMF chairman to stand trial in the British colony for 42 criminal charges relating to the BMF/Carrian financial scandal.
Bernama reported that Lorrain’s scandal, Martin Thomas, QC, denied that Lorrain Osman had released the letters which appeared in the Malaysian media during the height of the general elections, and which were treated as gospel truth by the government-owned and controlled electronic and printed media.
Lorrain’s counsel made this denial when replying to the counsel for the Hong Kong Government, Clive Nicholls QC, who said that the letters produced by Lorrain Osman during the height of the general elections in Malaysia showed that Lorrain Osman had access to documents which even the Hong Kong Government did not have.
The mystery of the Lorrain Osman’s letters becomes thicker and thicker when the counsel for Hong Kong Government disclaimed knowledge about the letters, and Lorrain’s counsel asserted that Lorrain new nothing about them and never released them.
Who the released those Lorrain Osman letters at the height of the general elections last month to destroy the credibility of Tengku Razaleigh and the chances of Semangat 46?
Utusan Malaysia said that the letters were released by Lorrain’s lawyer, but this has been denied by Lorrain’s counsel, Martin Thomas, QC, in open court in London.
Dr. Mahathir had put great reliance on these mysterious Lorrain Osman letters, to the extent that he told foreign correspondents after the general elections that the letters had produced new evidence which warranted a re-opening of police investigations into the BMF scandal. Dr. Mahathir even said that Tengku Razaleigh could be jailed for corruption if Lorrain Osman’s letters could be substantiated.
Now, the question is not whether Lorrain Osman’s letters from Brixton Prison could be substantiated, but whether they were fake letters, like the Pope’s letter to the Sabah Chief Minister, Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan, or pure concoctions like the lies told by the Gerakan President, Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, about the so-called DAP-PAS secret talks in Jakarta in April this year!
DAP amends Motion of Thanks for Royal Address to establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the $2.5 billion BMF scandal
The DAP had always been consistent and constant in our demand for a Royal Commission of Inquiry to get to the bottom of the Scandal of Scandals – the $2.5 billion BMF scandal. To his credit, Tengku Razaleigh whom the Barisan Nasional government now blames as the cause of the BMF scandal, had repeatedly called for a Royal Commission of Inquiry too.
I had made this call in Parliament in March 1986 when I debated the 18 Volumes of Reports, Exhibits and Recommendations of the three-man Ahmad Nordin Inquiry Committee into the BMF Scandal.
The Ahmad Nordin Inquiry Committee, which has as its two other members Chooi Mun Sou and Ramli Ibrahim, had recommended further investigations into many important areas of the scandal to pursue the fresh leads provided by the Inquiry Committee as it possessed only limited powers and restricted terms of reference.
However, the Mahathir Government continued to encase in a cover-up operation, wanting Malaysians to believe that only the BMF Four, namely Lorrain, Hashim Shamsuddin, Rais Sanimen and Ibrahim Jaffar, were solely responsible for the biggest theft and fraud of public funds in the biggest banking and financial scandal in Malaysia.
Right-thinking Malaysians rejected such simplistic answers, for if the government had nothing to hide, then it should have welcomed a Royal Commission of Inquiry to clear once and for all the doubts and suspicious of high-level political involvement in the BMF scandal.
If Dr. Mahathir now blames Tengku Razaleigh for the BMF scandal, and Tengku Razaleigh had publicly called for a Royal Commission of Inquiry, why is Dr. Mahathir so shy in complying with the request when such an inquiry would, if Dr. Mahathir is right, end up in exposing Tengku Razaleigh’s built? Unless of course Dr. Mahathir has really got things to hide from such a Royal Commission of Inquiry!
The BMF Royal Commission of Inquiry should investigate into the links between George Tan and UMNO’s Putra World Trade Centre
Parliament must take notice that in Lorrain’s last application for habeas corpus, his counsel’s submission to the English High Court referred to a letter written by George Tan to Rais Seniman, Bank Bumiputra’s head of international division at the time, which was copied to Datuk Musa Hitam (then Deputy Prime Minister).
The letter, which concerned a development project in Johore Bahru, confirmed Carrian’s willingness to take up a 50 per cent equity in the project, with other equities to be held by UMNO and the Johore Government. In that letter, George Tan had said that Carrian was willing to donate 20 per cent of the net profit to UMNO’s building fund.
This has very serious and far-reaching connotations. It suggests that besides those named from time to time by the Barisan Nasional Government to discredit them politically, there were others – or to quote Martin Thomas, Q.C., “ personalities in the Government” – who were in the know and, as alleged by Lorrain Osman’s affidavit, who were involved in approving the loans to Carrian.
In the Star of 21st November 1990, Lorrain’s Counsel, after referring to a document which showed that the Malaysian government had, at the time of the BMF scandal, financial interest is only the two financial institutions – Bank Bumiputra and Malayan Banking Bhd. – was reported to have told the judge:
“Thus your Lordship sees how central BBMB is in the economic policy of the UMNO Government. It was evident from the way the Government handled the BMF affair that it did not wish to let the full facts to come before the public view. The Nordin Report itself was inconclusive and left many questions unanswered.”
Such startling disclosure about George Tan’s donation to the UMNO Building Fund warrants a thorough and untrammelled inquiry and this is another reason why a Royal Commission of Inquiry should be established to investigate the real links between the BMF Scandal and UMNO’s Putra World Trade Centre, as well as to get to the bottom of the Scandals in Malaysia.
Call on former Bank Bumiputra Chairman and new MP for Tambun, Dr.Nawawi Mat Awin, to explain his role in the BMF scandal in his maiden speech in Dewan Rakyat_______
In a Special Brief, Part III, the Ahmad Nordin Inquiry Committee recommended that a police report be lodged against the Chairman and Directors of Bank Bumiputra for ‘conspiracy to defraud the shareholders of BSM to the tune of US $85 million and ‘breach of their fiduciary duties’ in connection with the decision of the full Board of Directors on May 20, 1983 to acquire the US assets of Carrian.
Unfortunately, no positive follow-up action had been taken by the various authorities concerned, whether by Bank Bumiputra or the police.
We have now in this House as a new member a person whom the Ahmad Nordin Inquiry Committee had recommended that a police report should be lodged in connection with the BMF scandal – Dr. Nawawi Mat Awin, the MP for Tambun, who was Chairman of the BBMF at the relevant time of spurious acquisition of the US assets of Carrian.
We expect and demand that Dr. Nawawi Mat Awin should give the House a full explanation of his role in the $2.5 billion BMF scandal in his maiden speech to the Dewan Rakyat.
The Barisan Nasional Government, the Attorney-General and the Police should explain why they have done nothing to act on the recommendations of the Ahmad Nordin Inquiry Committee in the last five years to bring to book those responsible for the BMF Scandal.
For instance, why didn’t the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abu Talib, take action to charge the BMF Four in Malaysia for their role in the scandal, and especially for corruption, as s.27 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1961 empowers the Malaysian Courts to try corruption offences committed by Malaysians overseas. Why didn’t the Attorney-General seek to extradite Lorrain Osman from Britain to Malaysia to stand trial for theft, fraud and corruption in the scandal?
Instead, the Barisan Nasional Government seems to have restored some of the BMF Four to favour, as in sponsoring the publication of a book on the New Economic Policy by Rais Seniman, who is a fugitive hiding in France, through the government agency, Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka, entitled ‘Growth and Ethnic Inequality’!
With the new evidence and leads, the time has come where the Government should not delay any longer in the establishment of a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the $2.5 billion BMF scandal.
I give notice that at the end of my speech, I will move a an amendment to the Motion of Thanks to add a clause on the establishment of a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the BMF scandal.
If Dr. Mahathir and the Barisan Nasional continue to oppose the establishment of a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the BMF scandal, to probe into the real causes and the culprits of the scandal, then for the future, all Barisan Nasional and UMNO MPs must be exposed as people who have special reasons in not wanting the BMF scandal to be fully ventilated and investigated.
1990 General Elections classic example as to how the voters were cheated of their hope and chance for political change
The 1990 general elections is a classic example of how, through the triple politics of money and corruption, the politics of fear and blackmail and the politics of lies and falsehoods, the voters were cheated of the political change they were hoping for the first time in 33 years of the nation’s political history.
There was no doubt that until the last-minute campaign of lies, communal poison and religious incitement by UMNO, using the full power of the television monopoly and the Malay printed media, the country was poised for change on Oct 21 and Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed could have ended up as the Parliamentary Opposition Leader in the eighth Parliament.
Even if there had been no change of government, the Barisan Nasional would have decisively lost its parliamentary two-thirds majority.
In the event, although the UMNO and Barisan Nasional cheated the voters of their hop for change by the most unscrupulous and unprincipled tactics in the last three days of the campaign, the Barisan Nasional just managed to secure its two-thirds majority, winning 127 out of 180 seats as compared to 148 out of 177 in the 1986 general elections.
An analysis of the results show that the Barisan Nasional kept its two-thirds majority by a razor-edge margin of 8,685 votes in eight Parliamentary seats in Peninsular Malaysia. In other words, if 4,343 voters in these eight Parliamentary seats in Peninsular Malaysia had not been influenced by the last minute Barisan Nasional campaign of lies, communal poison and religious incitement, and had stayed with Gagasan Rakyat, Dr. Mahathir would not only have lost the two-thirds parliamentary majority, the Gerakan President, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and the MIC President, Datuk Samy Vellu, would have been defeated and thrown out of Parliament.
These eight Parliamentary seats are:
Seremban 77 votes
Jelebu 395 votes
Bruas 763 votes
Parit Buntar 846 votes
Besut 994 votes
Nibong Tebal 1636 votes
Sungei Siput 1863 votes
Teluk Intan 2111 votes
In the recent general elections, it was the Barisan Nasional and UMNO which played the communalist, the chauvinist and the religious extremist inciting racial and religious sensitivities in utter abandon of the harm to national unity and national integration, while the Opposition acted most responsibly in avoiding communal and religious extremist and incitement.
The people of Malaysia were robbed of political change because of the most dirty and dishonourable election campaign by the Barisan Nasional, but despite this, the Barisan Nasional could only poll 52 per cent of the total votes cast.
General Elections is not a mandate for the tyranny of the majority against the minority
After the general elections, a responsible and democratic government would seek to find out why 48 per cent of the electorate failed to vote and endorse the Barisan Nasional, to understand the aspirations, the hopes and dreams of such a large segement representing 48 per cent of the electorate, and to review its nation building policies so as to more successfully unite Malaysians to face the challenges of the 1990s.
A general elections is the ultimate expression of the principle of the sovereignty of the people in a democracy, where the people could freely express their aspirations, hopes and dreams for themselves and the country, and whether views expressed by the voters in the general elections must be given the fullest respect by the new Government formed after the polls.
A general elections is not warrant or mandate for whoever could cobble, together the support of 50 per cent plus one of the voters who cast their votes, or enough Parliamentary seats to form a government, to oppress and tyrannise over the rest of the electorate.
When a parliamentary democracy becomes the tyranny of the majority against the minority, in this case, the tyranny of 52 per cent against 48 per cent of the voters in the recent general elections, then we are laying the seeds for the destruction of democracy and even the nation altogether.
This is why all right-thinking Malaysians are very concerned at the direction of the Barisan Nasional government after the general elections, which is not acting with the full understanding of the true meaning of parliamentary democracy in a multi-racial society.
The Barisan Nasional Government has embarked on a campaign of vendetta against the 48 per cent of the people who did not vote for the Barisan Nasional in the recent general elections.
A Campaign of Vendetta to punish the 48 per cent of the voters who did not vote Barisan Nasional would set Malaysians against Malaysians and create the greatest and deepest national divisions among the people
Let me warn the Prime Minister and the Barisan Nasional Government that if they persist in this campaign of vendetta, carrying out a punitive, spiteful and petty policy of discrimination against the 48 per cent of the voters who did not support the Barisan Nasional or Oct 21, then they will be setting Malaysians against Malaysians and create the greatest and deepest national division and bitterness among the people in Malaysia, which would not only undo all nation building efforts in the past three decades, but would cause untold damage to national unity for the next few decades.
In the past one month, the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Finance Minister, the Education Minister as well as other Barisan Nasional leaders behaved as if they are the Government for only 52 per cent of the electorate who voted for the Barisan Nasional in the recent general elections, while they disregarded, neglected or even discriminated against the 48 per cent who did not vote for Barisan Nasional.
If the Barisan Nasional Government regards itself as Government for only the 52 per cent of the electorate who voted for it in recent general elections, then it should stop collecting taxes and dues from the other 48 per cent who did not vote for it, and let the Prime Minister, the Deputy Prime Minister, the Finance Minister, the Education Minister tell the world that they are only Prime Minister, Deputy Prime Minister, Finance Minister and Education Minister for only 52 per cent of Malaysians and not for all Malaysians!
Why Mahathir refused to allow Nelson Mandela to meet and honour Tunku Abdul Rahman for his role in getting South Africa expelled from the Commonwealth in the fight against apartheid
After the general elections, instead of formulating policies which could further re-unite Malaysians, the Barisan Nasional government seems bent only on hardening national divisions and differences. Instead of seeking to accommodate the legitimate wishes, aspirations and needs of all Malaysians, the Barisan Nasional government has turned both a deaf ear and deaf eye to them.
This explains for the Barisan Nasional government’s petty-minded and churlish actions after the Oct 21 general elections, starting with the deliberate refusal by Dr. Mahathir to allow the African National Congress leader, Nelson Mandela, to meet Bapa Malaysia and Malaysia’s first premier, Tunku Abdul Rahman, during his visit to Malaysia.
Dr. Mahathir should explain to Parliament and the people why he did not allow or arrange for Nelson Mandela to visit and honour Tunku Abdul Rahman for his historic role in getting South Africa expelled from the Commonwealth some 30 years ago in the fight against apartheid?
I had specifically contacted the Information Minister, Datuk Mohamed Rahmat, the Chairman of the Organising Committee for the Nelson Mandela visit, to request that arrangements be made for DAP MPs to meet Nelson Mandela, but this was rejected on the ground that Mandela’s programme was too tight.
Mohamed Rahmat promised that the DAP leaders would receive invitations to the Public Rally for Nelson Mandela, but these invitations never came until after the event’
It is understandable that the Barisan Nasional Government was very wary and reluctant that Nelson Mandela meets with Opposition leaders, for Nelson Mandela may find that there is no great difference between the repressive laws in both Malaysia and South Africa, especially with regard to detention without trial laws like the Internal Security Act, or government by Proclamations of Emergency.
If Nelson Mandela had been free to meet with Opposition leaders, he would have found that in the recent general elections, eleven of those detained under the infamous Operation Lalang in 1987 had been elected or re-elected as Members of Parliament, nine from DAP and two PAS – which is an elcguent repudiation of the Barisan Nasional government in the field of human rights.
UMNO out to punish three target groups for its election setbacks: the people of Kelantan and Sabah and the Malaysian Chinese
It is clear from the events in the past six weeks since the general elections that the UMNC leaders have decided to punish three target groups for the Barisan Nasional setbacks in the general elections, namely the people of Kelantan, the people of Sabah and the Chinese in Malaysia.
This is why the Federal Government suspended Federal subsidies to Kelantan, including the padi subsidy; excluded, the Kelantan Mentri Besar and Sabah Chief Minister from the meeting of Mentris Besar and Chief Ministers with Federal Ministers, and removed the Kelantan Mentri Besar and Sabah Chief Minister as Chairman of their respective state security committee.
This is also why UMNO conducted a witch-hunt to look for a scope-goat for its total defeat in Kelantan, both at Parliamentary and State Assembly level – resisting in the UMNO General Assembly motion on the royalty.
The DAP is very concerned by these moves taken by the Barisan Nasional government to penalize and victimize the people of Kelantan and Sabah for not supporting the Barisan Nasional for while it may serve the partisan interests of the Barisan Nasional, they are retrograde steps which could only weaken the Federation of Malaysia spirit and concept and undermine national integration efforts.
The Federation of Malaysia concept and out parliamentary democracy should be strong enough to permit the people the constitutional right to choose the State Government they want without precipitating either a Federal-State crisis, or a crisis over the very concept of the Federation of Malaysia.
Malaysians from all states entitled to fair, equal and non-discriminatory treatment from Federal Government
The people of Kelantan and Sabah may have rejected the Barisan Nasional, but they have not rejected the Barisan Nasional, but they have not rejected Malaysia in the general elections and are an integral part of Malaysia. As such, the Federal Government must not only comply with the Constitution with regard to what is provided for each State, but must treat the people of Kelantan and Sabah equally with regard to Federal allocations as the people in other states, without any discrimination, whether on grounds of race, religion, state or political beliefs.
Otherwise, the people of Kelantan and Sabah are entitled to feel aggrieved at being given second-class treatment.
Deputy Prime Minister Ghaffar Baba had tries to justify the exclusion of the Kelantan Mentri Besar and Chief Ministers with Federal Ministers by inventing two category of ‘official’ and ‘unofficial’ meeting of Mencris Besar and Chief Ministers.
There is no constitutional basis for such distinction. If these meetings of Mentris Besar and Chief Ministers with Federal Ministers concern questions of how the Federal Government can provide greater help to improve the standards of living of the people in the various states, even if they are ‘unofficial’ meetings in that they are not provided for in the Constitution like the national councils on land, finance and forestry, the Mentri Besar of Kelantan and Chief Minister of Sabah should not be excluded.
This is because apart from the constitutional right of all states to the allocations from the Federal Government, the people of all states have also a fundamental and constitutional right to fair and equal treatment from the Federal Government without discrimination whatsoever.
The exclusion of the Kelantan Mentri Besar and the Sabah Chief Minister could only be justified if the meeting is of a strictly political nature confined to the Barisan Nasional leaders, but such a meeting must not involve any Federal or State Government officer, government machinery or government expenses.
Security of the people and nation, or security of the Barisan Nasional political interests?
The removal of the Kelantan Mentri Besar and Sabah Chief Minister as head of their respective state security council is an unwarranted mixing up of politics with security. Although security is a Federal responsibility, security in a Federation can best be secured if there is the closest report not only between the Federal Government and the people, but also between the Federal government and all State Governments, regardless of their political affiliations.
Political parties can disagree about political beliefs and objectives, but there is no reason why they cannot agree and act in unison for the security of the Federation.
It makes completely nonsense of security when a Mentri Besar of chief Ministers is qualified to head the state security committee when he is in the Barisan Nasional, but is immediately treated as unqualified when he leaves the Barisan Nasional! What type of security are we talking about – is in the security of the people and nation; or the security of the political interests of the Barisan Nasional?
Call on UMNO Youth not to challenge the full sovereignty of the Malay Rulers by suggesting that they are not the Rulers of the non-Malays in Malaysia
The UMNO, UMNO Youth and UMNO Wanita General Assembly motions on the royalty is one direct result of the UMNO’s search of a scapegoat for its total defeat in Kelantan in the general elections.
In the process, many sensitive and even seditions statements were made by the UMNO leaders. For instance, the Deputy UMNO Youth leader, Mohd.Nazri Tan Sri Abdul Aziz, warned the DAPSY for lodging a police report against UMNO Youth leader, Datuk Najib Tun Razak, for making seditions statements challenging the position of the Malay Rulers, by declaring that the issue of the Malay Rulers is a strictly Malay family affair and that they have nothing to do with the Chinese and Indians in Malaysia – stating that they are Raja Melayu not Raja Cina or Raja India.
This is a most seditious statement, for Mohd. Nazri Sri Abdul Aziz is openly challenging the full sovereignty of the Malay Rulers, as the Rulers of all Malaysians, regardless of whether they are Malays, Chinese or Indians.
I call on the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Abu Talib Othman to charge Mohd. Nazri Tan Sri Abdul Aziz with sedition for the Deputy UMNO Youth Leader had openly challenged the position of the Malay Rulers by declaring that they are not full sovereign of all Malaysians, but only the Malays. In diminishing the sovereignty of the Malay Rulers, Mohd. Nazri had challenged the position of the Malay Rulers.
I know that we cannot debate the position of the royalty in Parliament without a substantive motion, and I only want to express regret that the UMNO has decided to raise this issue after it had suffered total defeat in Kelantan.
The right forum to discuss this issue would be by way of a substantive motion in Parliament, or through a constitution Review Commission.
The Barisan Nasional is completely devoid of meaningful or legitimate Chinese representation
The third target group of this Barisan Nasional post-general election campaign of vendetta are the Malaysian Chinese, for the Barisan Nasional is completely devoid of meaningful or legitimate Chinese representations.
All the MCA, Gerakan and even MIC Presidents and top leaders would have been defeated in the Oct 21 general elections if not for the UMNO’s last minute campaign of lies to incite racial and religious sensitivities to panic the Malay voters to stampede them back to vote for UMNO, and this saved the MCA, Gerakan and MIC too.
Everyone know that the MCA, Gerakan and MIC Ministers and MPs would of have won if not for the UMNO’s last-minute incitement of the Malay votes. Instead of finding out why the non-Malays voted decisively for Gagasan Rakyat, the Barisan Nasional has taken a series of actions and steps which could only alienate the non-Malays even more.
The Prime Minister, in his UMNO Persidential, Address, blamed the Chinese Press for playing with fire in campaigning for the Opposition and for a two-party system in the recent general elections.
MCA President, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik and the Gerakan President, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, must have convinced Dr. Mahathir that one important reason why the MCA and Gerakan did so badly in the general elections was because of the Chinese Press.
I had earlier suggested the establishment of a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the 1990 general elections, which could also investigate as to whether the Chinese pres had campaigned for the Opposition and a two-party system in the recent general elections.
An independent inquiry into the performance of the media, both electronic and printed, in the general elections would show that those must guilty of bias are the electronic media and the UMNO-owned or controlled Bahasa Malaysia and English language newspapers. If campaigning for political parties is ‘plying with fire’, it is these media which would be found guilty, but Dr. Mahathir had not warned them at all. This is another instance of the Prime Minister’s double standards at work.
The Chinese Press also did not campaign for a two-party system, and it is completely wrong for Dr. Mahathir and other top UMNO leaders to condemn the Chinese Press for wanting to see the end of a multi-party system and its replacement by a two-party system.
The Chinese Press never campaigned for a two-party system, or for the end of the multi-party system. There were considerable interest, report and articles for and against a two-coalition system, which is based on a multi-party system.
I cannot understand how Dr. Mahathir could be so misinformed about the role of the Chinese Press, and I can only conclude that the MCA and the Gerakan had misled the Prime Minister to look for scape-goats for the most decisive of the MCA and Gerakan by the Chinese electorate in both MCA and Gerakan party history.
No wonder, the UMNO Youth leader openly asked at the UMNO Youth General Assembly, what was it that the Chinese in Malaysia want. He accused the Chinese for being ‘ingrateful’ in not supporting the Barisan Nasional in the recent general elections.
No Chinese Minister in Cabinet could answer the UMNO Youth question, what the Chinese in Malaysia want!
The response of the MCA President, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik, to these UMNO attacks on the Chinese voting in the general elections and the Chinese Press was his statement that the Malaysian Chinese should be contented because the Chinese in Malaysia have more political, economic, educational and religious freedom than the Chinese in any other country.
This is a most pathetic response from the MCA President, who clearly could not answer the UMNO Youth Leader’s question as to what the Malaysian Chinese wanted in Malaysia, and his criticism that the Malaysian Chinese are ‘ungrateful’.
Najib Tun Razak does not understand the meaning democracy, for the question of gratitude does not arise when voters exercise their constitutional right of the vote. If voters exercise their constitutional right of the vote. If voters can be punished or discriminated because they exercising their constitutional right to vote, then such a constitutional right does not have much meaning.
It is very sad that 33 years after Merdeka, top UMNO leaders should be publicly asking, what do the Malaysian Chinese want, and no Chinese Minister in Cabinet could give an answer!
The Chinese, like other Malaysian citizens, want 5Ks, Kemakmuran, Keamanan, Kestabilan as well as Keadilan and Kebebasan
Let me tell the UMNO leaders that the Malaysian Chinese want to enjoy what all Malaysian citizens to enjoy, democratic freedom, human rights, socio-economic justice, a clean, honest and efficient government, and genuins national unity in the country. During the general elections, the Barisan Nasional talked about the 3Ks – Kemakmuran, Keamanan, Kestabilan. But the Chinese, like other Malaysian citizens, want two more Ks, Keadilan and Kebebasan.
They do not want to see abuse of power, as in the victimization of the people of Kelantan and Sabah after the general elections.
They do not see the government carrying out a campaign of vendetta to penalize those who did not vote for the Barisan Nasional, for this is undemocratic.
They cannot accept government policies or measures which are arbitrary, unjust and unfair, like for instance, the change of the appellation of the 452 new villages by dropping the word ‘new’, without any concrete plan to bring the 1.7 new villagers into the mainstream of national socio-economic development after four decades.
They cannot accept, for instance, the sudden Education Ministry decision on 13th November 1990 disallowing national-type primary school pupils with 6As from direct promotion to Form One, without any sound academic reason.
The Education Minister, Anwar Ibrahim, had said that one-year notice had been given to teachers, parents and pupils for such a decision, which he said was made because the feedback from the Inspectorate of Schools Division was that these pupils with 6As could not cope with Bahasa Malaysia if they are promoted directly to Form One.
Both grounds had been proved to be utterly false and untrue. Nobody knew about the so-called one year notice, not even the MCA Ministers and the MCA Deputy Education Minister himself.
The pupils worked their heart out to achieve the 6As in order to get direct promotion to Form One, and after their results were announced, many sacrificed their school holidays to better prepare for their direct admission to Form One. Now all their dreams and hopes are destroyed!
Furthermore, the claim that national-type pupils with 6As could not cope with Bahasa Malaysia is promoted direct to Form One is not borne out by the performance of these students.
After an initial period of three to six months of adaptation, the overwhelming majority of these students would have risen to the top of their class again. In fact, I know of a student in Penang who had 7As in Std. VT and was always first in class who also remained as first in class when he was promoted to Form One.
I am sure this is not an isolated case in the country. I have no doubt that if survey is conducted, it would be found that the ‘best’ and ‘brightest’ of the national-type primary schools can hold their position as the ‘pest and brightest’ in the national secondary schools after direct promotion to Form One.
Gross educational injustice to treat 6As in national-type primary school as worse than 4Es in national primary schools
It is a gross educational injustice and discrimination to treat pupils of 6As of national-type schools as even worse than 4Es in national primary schools in the Std. VI Assessment Test, for a student with 4Es in national primary school will be promoted directly to Form One.
How can Anwar Ibrahim say that this decision to prevent the pupils with 6As from direct promotion to Form One is not a politically-inspired decision when even MCA and Gerakan national and state leaders use this issue to tell the Chinese that they are being punished for their vote in the general elections?
No Education Minister should use the educational future of the young generation of Malaysians as political pawns, and I would earnestly urge the Education Minister not to destroy the educational hopes of these 1,600-odd pupils with 6As.
But even more important, the Government must not give the young generation of students in the national-type primary schools the impression and belief that it is most unfair, unreasonable, unjust and discriminatory, which breaks it solemn promises on education to schoolchildren without any good educational reasons, for such an impression and belief would stay for this young generation of Malaysians.
If UMNO, the backbone of Barisan Nasional government, does not know that the Chinese in Malaysia want, then how could it govern with justice and success?
Malaysia had promise of greatness but in the past 33 years, we have allowed other countries with lesser potential and promise to overtake us in the race to progress and development.
We will never fulfill our promise of greatness if the government continues to divide rather than unite Malaysians of all races. We have in fact reached a stage where UMNO, the backbone of the Barisan Nasional government, has declared that it does not understand what it is that the Malaysian Chinese want.
This is a admission of total government failure in nation building in Malaysia. If the Barisan Nasional Government based on UMNO does not know what the Chinese in Malaysia want, how could it rule the country with justice and success?
I think this is a most serious question which all MPs, regardless of race of religion, should ponder and seek an answer, if Malaysia is to fulfill its promise of greatness as a nation.
Finally, as I had intimated earlier, I now move an amendment to the motion of thinks, by deleting the full stop at the end of the motion and adding this following: “and resolves that the Government establish a Royal Commission of Inquiry into the 2.5 billion Bumiputra Malaysia Finance scandal.”