by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Saturday, 18th May 1991:
If Liong Sik cannot convince RTM, how can he convince Dr. Mahathir that the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City is not a ‘Chinatown’?
MCA President, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik, said yesterday that the MCA Central Committee had entrusted the MCA Presidential Council to “take whatever steps necessary to successfully see that the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City become a reality”.
Liong Sik said he would ask for a meeting with the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamed on the project. He said he wished to point out that the MCA is not talking about a “Chinatown, as hailed by some quarters.”
Apparently, Liong Sik has abandoned his earlier claim that “top UMNO leaders had discussed, understood and accepted” the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City project. Liong Sik must have discussed the project with the lowliest UMNO officials, and mistook them for ‘top UMNO leaders’!
However, Liong Sik should explain how he expects to convince Dr. Mahathir that the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City is not a ‘Chinatown’, when he could not even convince a small government department like RTM.
Last night’s RTM Bahasa Malaysia news, when reporting on Liong Sik’s announcement, describe the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City specifically as ‘Chinatown’.
It is significant that today’s Utusan Malaysia report on Liong Sik’s announcement is headlined: “MCA teruskan hasrat tubuh Chinatown”.
As Liong Sik dare not take up my suggestion that he lead a MCA delegation to meet with the Bahasa Malaysia editors to ask them not to use the word ‘Chinatown’ to describe the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City. I am not surprised that the Utusan papers continue to use ‘Chinatown’.
But I am very surprised that the MCA President cannot get a government television station to report the Malaysian Chinese Cultural City correctly, and not to distort it as a ‘Chinatown’ over the television news. When I heard the RTM Bahasa Malaysia news last night over Channel 2, I could only shake my head in disbelief at the unprecedented weakness of a MCA President in the 42 years of MCA history!