by Parliamentary opposition Leader, DAP Secretary-General and MP for Tanjung, Lim Kit Siang, in Petaling Jaya on Monday, 5th April , 1993:
Rafidah’s call for deregistration of Semangat 46 is part of the mounting political pressure on the Registrar of Societies to dissolve Semangat 46
Although Deputy Prime Minister, Ghafar Baba, claims that the deregistration notice issued by the Registrar of Societies to Semangat 46 was not a political issue, but a matter between the Registrar of Societies and Semangat 46, the mounting demands and pressures by the UMNO Baru leaders, both national and state, indicate otherwise.
Yesterday, the Minister of international Trade and Industry and Wanita UMNO Baru chief, Datuk Rafidah Aziz, joined the chorus of UMNO Baru leaders calling for the deregistration of Semangat 46.
She said in Seremban that Semangat 46 should be deregistered if there was concrete evidence that the party had used the UMNO symbol at its Kota Bahru Annual General Meeting on January 3.
A day earlier, the Johore Mentri Besar, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yasin, had also called for the dissolution of Semangat 46.
Rafidah’s call for the deregistration of Semangat 46 is clearly part of the mounting political pressure by Cabinet Ministers and the Government on the Registrar of Societies to strike off the registration of Semangat 46.
As UMNO Baru has also claimed that it is the legitimate sucessor to UMNO which was declared illegal in 1988, before the Regis¬trar of Societies take any further action on her deregistration notice to Semangat 46, she should also issue a similar deregistration notice to UMNO Baru, on exactly similar grounds.
Otherwise, the Registrar of Societies would be seen as a mere political pawn of the UMNO Baru and Government to eliminate the political. threat posed by Semangat 46 to UMNO Baru as a result of the constitutional crisis, particularly in the next general elections.
UMNO Baru leaders have been claiming that Semangat 46 is a spent and dead political force’. If so, why are the UMNO Baru lead¬ers afraid to allow the voters in the next general elections to prove them right, instead of resorting -to unfair and undemocratic tactics, as well as gross abuses of government power, to deregister Semangat 46?
Is this because the UMNO Baru leaders believe that Semangat 46 will pose the greatest challenge to its power base in the next general elections, unless it is deregistered first?