Speech (Part 2) by Parliamentary Opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, at the Tanjong DAP Parliamentary Liaison Committee Chinese New Year reception held at Penang DAP Hqrs on Monday, 17th February 1992 at 8 p.m.
Islamic State and Islamisation of non-Muslims in Malaysia – An Appeal and a Message by DAP to MCA and Gerakan
On Chinese New Year Eve, I publicly proposed the conclusion of a Three-Lim ‘Year of the Monkey’ Declaration to unite and commit the MCA, Gerakan and DAP to oppose the Islamic State concept as well as any Islamisation measure which infringe non-Muslim rights, whether from UMNO or PAS.
TO morrow is Chap Goh Mei, the last day of the ‘Year of the Monkey’ Chinese New Year celebrations and it is evident that the MCA President, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik and the Gerakan President, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, do not have the political principle, conviction, commitment or authority to enter into such a Three-Lim ‘Year of the Monkey’ Declaration.
I want to make use of tonight’s occasion to make an appeal and send an important message to the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders.
My appeal is that the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders should stop playing politics with fundamental issues of the country and to rise above personal and party political interests and to do what is in the best interest of the people and future generations – even if it means sacrificing Ministerial office position, status and profit.
The way to oppose Islamic State and application of Islamisation measures on non-Muslims in Malaysia in Malaysia is to assert and uphold the human and constitutional rights of non-Muslim Malaysians and not to tell lies and untruths as is done by MCA and Gerakan leaders
My message to the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders is that the only effective way to oppose Islamic State and the application of Islamisation measures on non-Muslims in Malaysai is a two-pronged approach which:
FIRSTLY, asserts and upholds the human and constitutional rights of non-Muslim Malaysians to a secular state and not to tell lies and untruths as is done by MCA and Gerakan leaders; and
SECONDLY, to be consistent and principled in opposing any Islamisation measure which infringed non-Muslim rights and status, regardless of whether they come from PAS or UMNO, or happen in Kelantan or in any other state.
For the past four months, the MCA and Gerakan had launched a high-powered nation-wide campaign of lies about the ‘oppression’ and ‘persecition’ of the Chinese in Kelantan. The MCA and Gerakan launched this campaign not to help the Chinese in Kelantan, or to attack PAS, but to ‘declare all-out war’ against the DAP and destroy DAP’s political credibility, authority and popular support.
It is clear that the MCA and Gerakan leaders are not in the least bothered whether the Chinese in Kelantan are ‘oppressed’ and ‘persecuted’, but only interested in destroying the DAP’s political credibility, authority and popular support in the hope that they could regain public support in the process.
This is why the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders never went to Kelantan to find out the truth of the position of the Chinese in Kelantan, but only shout from a distance, or when they go to Kelantan, they disappear into the air-conditioned luxury hotel rooms to ‘steathily drink beer’!
MCA and Gerakan should stop its campaign of lies and institute a political education programme to explain why Islamic State and Islamisation of non-Muslims is unacceptable in Malaysia
The MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders have been most irresponsible, for they are not helping but harming the cause of Malaysians who oppose an Islamic State or the application of Islamic laws on non-Muslim Malaysians.
This is because MCA and Gerakan campaign of lies and falsehoods give those, whether in PAS or UMNO, who want an Islamic State or impose Islamisation on non-Muslims the conviction that there are no good, strong and powerful reasons against them, but only the catalogue of lies and falsehoods from the MCA and the Gerakan.
This is why the first prong of approach to oppose an Islamic State and the imposition of Islamic laws on non-Muslims is for the MCA and Gerakan to halt its present campaign of lies and institute instead a political education programme to explain the strong human rights reasons and constitutional grounds why Islamic State and Islamisation of non-Muslims in Malaysia is completely unacceptable and unsuitable.
This cannot be the work of MCA and Gerakan alone, and the DAP had been playing its part. This is why the DAP had proposed the Three-Lim ‘Year of the Monkey’ Declaration against Islamic State and Islamisation of non-Muslims, as well as a Joint MCA-Gerakan-DAP Action Committee to implement the principles and action programmes of the Declaration.
The second prong of the approach calls for a consistent and principled stand against Islamisation measures which infringed non-Muslim rights and interests, whether they come from PAS or UMNO.
How can PAS be convinced, for instance, that the MCA and Gerakan are opposed in principled to Islamic State and Islamisation of non-Muslims, if they only oppose Islamisation measures by PAS but give full-hearted support to Islamisation measures by UMNO, as have been happening for over a decade?
Similarly, how can MCA and Gerakan convince the UMNO leaders who want an Islamic State and Islamisation of non-Muslims, if they see such opportunistic ‘double-faced’ stand of the MCA and Gerakan.
I hope my appeal and message to the MCA and Gerakan Ministers and leaders will not fall on deaf ears.