Let’s talk about MCA one time, shall we? The MCA that is supposed to represent the Chinese in the Barisan Nasional. What the new MCA President Chua Soi Lek wants Prime Minister Dato Seri Najib to hear and do. After admitting that the MCA leadership squabbles for 1 1/2 years have considerably drained Chinese support and had not been contributing much towards Barisan Nasional’s election efforts. After he admitted at Hulu Selangor by election that even the Kuala Kubu Bahru MCA election centre was not manned. That the MCA was not ready for a snap election. And he talked about speaking up more after that.
And we wonder if he had done that through the Barisan – through the proper channels, said opposition DAP Ronnie Liu in his Open Letter appeal to his Pakatan colleagues gunning him. But in the speech, printed below, the MCA President is speaking to the public, for the Barisan Chairman’s ears. Najib was present on the occasion concerned. Najib is said to have been pandering to Chinese interests, running after their votes. The 2008 General Elections run-away votes, that is.
Let’s also imagine what Najib had expected of MCA, UMNO’s historical partner. Or did he expect anything at all, he going straight to the voters at Hulu Selangor and Sibu by elections, offering RM3 million to a Chinese school in Rasa, RM10 million to Chinese schools in Sibu.
What are the choices for Najib? Does he listen to advice. What and whose advice does he listen to most? Let’s talk for a bit.
His Deputy, Tan Sri Muhyiddin, has however been seen as trying to protect and promote Malay interests. In the next article, he said, “If it (MCA) wants to fight for the Chinese community, it must not touch on the interest of others, including the Malays”. He was commenting on the MCA president’s statement that the party would continue to fight for the Chinese community, “even if its views were shared by the Opposition”. It led to the MCA President saying he was disappointed with the Deputy PM, adding that there was “no need for war drums.”
The subsequent article says that the MCA President’s “attempts to embolden the MCA appears to have failed to recapture the confidence of the Chinese community as a recent poll here found that only nine per cent of the electorate regard him as a capable leader.” His video-taped hotel room affair image may still be haunting him. And in the ensuing article, Perkasa President Ibrahim Ali tells the MCA President “not to be a Chinese warrior.”
Amidst all these, any hope for single-stream schooling or Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua during Najib’s tenure? What do we do for the achievement of long term harmony and unity if there is no hope for SSS?
Meanwhile, there is the opinion that “The racial time-bomb is ticking fast!” – see the last article.
Published: Saturday August 14, 2010 MYT 1:30:00 PM
WELCOMING SPEECH BY YANG BERHORMAT DATUK SERI DR CHUA SOI LEK IN CONJUNCTION WITH MCA’S CHINESE ECONOMIC CONGRESS
14 AUGUST 2010
Yang Amat Berhormat Dato’ Sri Mohd Najib Tun Haji Abdul Razak The Right Honourable Prime Minister of Malaysia; Distinguished Guests, Distinguished Speakers, Ladies and Gentlemen; and a very good morning to all of you. Welcome to the “Chinese Economic Congress” with the theme “Role of the Chinese community in achieving the NEM and 10th Malaysia Plan targets”.
We are honoured that YAB Dato’ Sri Najib is with us today to officiate this event. His presence here says a lot about the importance of the matters that will be discussed in this economic congress.
The NEM and the 10 Malaysian Plan are two of the 4 pillars of national transformation that will enable Malaysia to achieve the goals of Vision 2020, that is, to be a high-income economy and developed nation by 2020.
The other pillars are the 1Malaysia concept and the Government Transformation Programme.
Much thought and effort has gone into crafting the NEM and 10MP, and, of course, far more work needs to be done for the actual implementation.
Let us bear in mind that these are national plans, and not just the Government’s plans. This means the nation as a whole has to come together and pull in the same direction in order for the NEM and the 10MP to succeed.
Our immediate priority is to jointly grow the economic pie, instead of noisily debating over which slice we deserve. Make no mistake, failure is not an option.
Sir, you had, when the launching of the NEM, clearly stated that the nation was in need of a dramatic transformation in order for all Malaysians to achieve the next level of growth driven by innovation and competitiveness.
And, I would like to congratulate the Prime Minister on his vision and far sightedness in wanting to make a better future for all Malaysians for generations to come. We are here to ensure that the transformation is successful and the targets for both the NEM and the 10th Malaysia Plan are met.
The end result will be beneficial to the rakyat in general and, in the process, further improve the rakyat’s confidence in the Government.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
1. Liberalisation of the economy
For a country to achieve accelerated growth, one needs to liberalise the economy. One of the better examples of sectors is the liberalisation of the oil and gas sector which encompasses areas as such shipping, distribution of gas, petrochemicals, education and vocational/technical training, and so on.
Our oil and gas sector has reached a stage in which we are already an established player in the global stage.
Yet the opportunities for the SMEs are still small compared to other countries including non-oil producing nations like Singapore.
Therefore, given the maturity of the sector, the opening up of the sector will boost the country’s GDP by many folds.
As such, sir, I sincerely urge you to consider liberalising the Malaysia’s oil and gas sector, and allow many more of our non-Bumiputera investors to be joint-venture partners, contractors and sub-contractors in areas such as exploration, platform constructions, logistics, deep-sea operations and others.
Another area that needs to be liberalised is also the telecommunications sector. The incumbent players have been operating for a few decades now.
With the full opening of the sector, increased in competition actually augurs well for both the operators and the consumers. With protectionism, rates of telecommunication services offered are high.
Thus the country’s broadband usage is less than desired. We are hardly touching the 40% penetration rate as compared to the higher levels achieved by other countries.
Full liberalisation of the market will see competition bringing down telecommunication services’ rates. This will provide a better business environment for foreign companies especially the MNCs to set up their businesses here.
2. The Role of the GLCs in the NEM
The GLCs make up nearly 40% of the value of the Bursa and there is no denying that they dominate the private sector in the economy in terms of their assets and capitalisation.
GLCs have been instrumental in helping the Bumiputera Business Community to flourish – to give them a head start to form a core cluster of Bumi entrepreneurs to which it is to spin off, mentor and nurture others to be equally competitive and to be confident in the global stage.
But at the same time, it must be recognised that Malaysia is just a small market with 26 million people.
As such, GLCs must take the bold step to venture regionally and/or globally like CIMB bank. CIMB has expanded its financial wings to Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and is doing very well in South East Asia.
However, to be regionally and globally competitive, we need to make sure that the best talent remains within our shores.
I encourage more GLCs to open up their Board of Directors to include more non-Bumiputeras as well as international expertise.
It is important also that GLCs open up their procurement system to include competitive SMEs based the quality of their service and products that they offer. Rather than based on race or, equity requirement.
3. Open Tender System
Likewise, we call for greater transparency in our tendering process. Closed tender systems have always been associated with corruption and kickbacks. Quality of projects would also be compromised.
This does not go down well with the good governance that the government is trying to project. Vying for projects under an open tender system will not only remove accusations and talk of corrupt administration but also lower the cost of projects.
We hold the opinion that all the public procurement should be open to all local SMEs and provided with equal access and opportunities.
Under the 9th Malaysia Plan, over RM1bil was allocated for SME development alone. Bank Negara estimated the number of SMEs in the country at about 600,000.
The importance of the SMEs is recognised by the government. The NEAC report stated that SMEs currently make up 35% of Malaysia’s GDP and 20% of its exports.
If the future procurements were to be opened to the SMEs, the SMEs would account for much more than the current 35% of the GDP. If the value of the SMEs were to double, they will account for over 50% of the country’s GDP.
Following upon your decision to relax the 30% Bumiputera equity requirement for IPOs as well as the liberalisation of the 27 services sub-sectors, I urge you, sir in similarly consider to be flexible in implementing the 30% Bumiputera equity in other sectors.
Rather than enforcing the 30% bumi equity requirement across the board, a more flexible system in the form of a Margin of Preference system should be implemented on a sector-by-sector basis.
In the days of traditional economic structure, when capital and land were the major economic input, we could insist upon a certain percentage of equity distribution and still be fairly successful.
But we are now in the age of a knowledge economy, where brain power in the forms of innovation and creativity, is the major (if not sole) requirement. If a talented investor, weather local or foreign, wants to start a new venture to design and manufacture a product based on his innovation for the new IT generation consumers in Malaysia, we cannot insist that he shares 30% of his creativity with us.
He is talented and can go to any other part of the world to pursue his dreams. Instead we should offer him all the assistance he needs so that he can come to Malaysia, create high-paying jobs and help propel us to being a high-income economy.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
4. Merit –Based and Needs – based System
Fundamentally, the Malaysian Chinese have been and still are very understanding and loyal citizens. Globalisation has presented Malaysians many opportunities but it has also forced us to continue to be a competitive nation. Malaysians cannot remain globally competitive unless we go a merit-based system.
On the other hand, we must inculcate a caring society in which, the poor must be looked after. The NEM has pointed out that the bottom 40% of households earn less than RM1,500 per month. Thus, it is clear that preferential treatment must be given according to need rather than race.
5. Retaining and Attracting Talent
Ladies and Gentlemen, To achieve high income nation status, the NEM sets out a couple of primary thrusts and enablers to move the economy up the value chain and also to address the persistent socio-economic inequalities.
Amongst the enablers is to develop a quality workforce and reducing dependency on foreign labour. In order to retain our talent pool in the country, we must recognise their contribution to the nation – to make sure that they are rewarded according to their merit.
Therefore, at this juncture, I would like to applaud Y.A.B. Dato Sri’s recent decision to offer scholarships to all students, regardless of race who scored 9A+ in their SPM examinations. This is truly in the 1Malaysia spirit.
This shows the Government’s efforts to develop human capital. Don’t forget high achievers are, in fact, hidden talent and asset to a nation.
Elevating and improving the level of education in the country also means paying more attention to vernacular schools.
Approximately 20% of Malaysia’s total trade over the last couple of years was with countries that adopt Mandarin as its main language.
Total trade in the primary countries that use Mandarin as their mother tongue has been estimated at over US$2.5 trillion per annum.
Malaysia’s trade with these countries, in turn, accounts for only 2% of their total trade. This goes to show that the importance of this potential to date has been way underestimated.
Given our multi lingual and multi cultural society, we believe Malaysia has yet to tap into the full potential of these trading nations.
The great strategist Sun Tzu has been frequently quoted on this where he said that whoever is first in the battle field and awaits the coming of the “competitors” will be fresh for the fight.
Whoever trails behind in the field will arrive exhausted, having to hasten to battle.
Thus, with more schools, we would be able to produce more students from these vernacular schools. Only then will we be able to generate a workforce conversant in Mandarin in order to be able to seize the opportunities offered in the global markets.
Not only are additional schools required to cater for future demand and population growth but, more importantly, to ease the current overcrowding problem which we have been combating exhaustively over the last few years.
To add to the problem, the number of students in the Chinese schools is expected to increase by an additional 65,000 over the next five years.
Ladies and Gentlemen,
6. Rationalisation of Subsidy, Minimum Wage and Skilled Workers
In Malaysia, only 23% of workers (11 million) are skilled workers, including those with higher education degree. We are one of the countries with the least qualified workers in the region. Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan have about 40% skilled workers. Lack of skill and qualified workers in Malaysia is impending economic progress and do not attract FDI.
Malaysia is addicted to cheap foreign workers. Study by the Human Resources Ministry show that 34% of 1.3 million works earn less than RM700 per month, below poverty line of RM720 per month.
What is worrying is that the World Bank Study on wage trend in Malaysia recorded only an annual 2.6% growth in the last 10 years. The influx of foreign workers depresses the wage increase of local workers.
To accelerate the process of reducing the reliance on foreign labour, MCA here calls for the execution of a minimum wage policy on a sectoral and regional basis. Over 90% of the countries in the world already have legislation in place on minimum wage but Malaysia is still lagging behind.
The setting up of a minimal wage system is in line with MCA’s calls for rationalisation of subsidy. Subsidy cut is a must to prevent distortion in the allocation of the country. Implementation of subsidy reduction schemes cannot stand alone as it needs to be complemented with a minimal wage system to offset negative impact of the reduction in subsidy.
The activation of the Minimum Wage Council now is, therefore, looking more and more appropriate as the current situation we are in, seems to be calling for one.
At this point, our businesses can no longer win market share by trying to be the cheapest producers of goods or providers of services. In a globalised world, such an edge is only fleeting.
Lasting competitive advantage today has to come from productivity-led growth and innovation. The 10MP includes Government measures to create an environment in which the creativity, energy and initiative of private enterprises can be nurtured and harnessed.
On that note, I believe the Chinese Economic Congress held today is most timely. We need to ensure we know each and everyone’s role, to be able to tap into each others forte to ensure that the NEM and 10th Malaysia Plan are executed efficiently to achieve the targets already set out.
There is no denying the road ahead will undoubtedly be tough indeed but I have full confidence that under your leadership at the end of the day, we will see bright light at the end of the tunnel.
I acknowledge that the business community has certain expectations of what the Government should and should not do. In the overall scheme of things, 10 years is a mere blink of an eye. But for Malaysia, the next decade may well prove to be a crucial phase in our nation’s history.
As we can see from the audience patronising this Economic Congress, the Chinese community is well represented here with a significant number of Chinese organisations coming out in full force to ascertain its role in ensuring that targets are met as per the theme of today’s Economic Congress.
Yang Amat Berhormat Dato’ Sri, Ladies and Gentlemen,
Before I end, I would like to take this opportunity to say a big thank you and congratulate the organising committee and those involved for the hard work in organising this event successfully.
Also, permit me to end with a couple of ancient sayings by Confucius for you audience to ponder. We should “better be a diamond with flaws rather than a pebble without”. Also, “only the wisest and stupidest of men never change” and for one “to know what is right and not to do it, is the worst type of cowardice”.
So we intend to change for the better and to do what is right. We can start off with this Congress where we can brainstorm, learn our roles and how we can help in ensuring the target of becoming a high income advanced nation can be met.
Once again, thank you.
Tuesday August 17, 2010
Be sensitive to others, DPM tells MCA
KUALA LUMPUR: MCA should be sensitive to the needs of other races in the country when it fights for the Chinese community, said Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
The Deputy Prime Minister said MCA and other Barisan Nasional component parties should take that into consideration so as not to cause any misunderstanding.
“In Barisan, we always take a similar stand on issues affecting all races.
“If it (MCA) wants to fight for the Chinese community, it must not touch on the interest of others, including the Malays,” he said after launching the Federal Territory Skim Prihatin 1Malaysia here yesterday.
Muhyiddin was commenting on MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek’s statement that the party would continue to fight for the Chinese community, even if its views were shared by the Opposition.
Muhyiddin said whether the MCA wanted to take a similar stand with the DAP was another matter but noted that its views must not lead to any misunderstanding.
“Whatever they wish to fight for, they have to consider Barisan’s interest.
“I don’t think MCA will sacrifice the importance of the (Barisan) co-operation,” he added.
On the resolution by the Chinese Economic Congress for the 30% Bumiputra equity quota to be abolished gradually, Muhyiddin said the Malays’ share of the economy was still low.
He reminded the MCA that the unfair distribution of wealth had resulted in the 1969 racial riots.
“This has to be looked at in a larger context … without a fair distribution, we saw what happened in 1969 and I hope it (unfair distribution) won’t happen again.
“I am sure Datuk (Dr) Chua knows the Malays are not successful yet and if he wants the country to progress, there must be a fair economic distribution,” he said.
On MCA’s stand to push for the implementation of the resolutions passed at last weekend’s Chinese Economic Congress, Muhyiddin said the Government had the final say on the issues, including those related to special privileges of the bumiputra.
“The MCA must understand the question of special privileges and wealth distribution. If it touches on government policy, it is the Government’s duty to uphold the policy,” he said.
Soi Lek disappointed in Muhyiddin, says no need for war drums
By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani August 17, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 17 – Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said today that he was disappointed with Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin for using the May 13 incident to warn the MCA against undermining Barisan Nasional (BN) when fighting for the Chinese community.
He added that there was no need to beat the “racial war drum” because Malaysians were now more mature, adding that what MCA was asking for was not at the expense of other communities.
On Saturday, the MCA’s Chinese Economic Congress called for economic liberalisation and a merit-based and needs-based system to contribute to the path for Malaysia to be globally competitive.
Yesterday, Muhyiddin reminded MCA however that the unfair distribution of wealth had resulted in the 1969 racial riot, the worst in the multi-racial country.
The MCA president pointed out today that Malaysians had matured since 1969 and were able to engage in rational discussions.
“The socio-economic condition in Malaysia today is totally different from that in 1969 as Malaysians are capable of having rational discussions without beating the racial war drum.
“All we ask for is fair share. Rest assured the MCA has no plans or interest to deprive other communities of what is rightfully theirs,” he said in a press statement.
The Umno deputy president also warned the MCA to not undermine the BN when fighting for the Chinese community and reminded Dr Chua to be sensitive to the needs of other races in the country.
Muhyiddin dismissed a recent resolution by MCA’s Chinese Economic Congress for the 30 per cent Bumiputera quota to be abolished and said the Malays’ share of the economy was still low.
“This has to be looked in a larger context, without a fair distribution, we saw what happened in 1969, I hope it won’t happen again,” said Muhyiddin.
Dr Chua said today that MCA had always been loyal to BN but needed to remain relevant by catering to the needs of the Chinese community.
“MCA is sensitive of its role within the Barisan Nasional but we have a role to play as Chinese-based party so that we can continue to be relevant.
“The loyalty of the MCA towards Barisan Nasional should not be questioned as it has gone through good and bad times when Umno suffered setbacks. Back then MCA had delivered support to ensure its victory in the general elections,” he said.
Dr Chua said that the party never questioned the special position of the Malay community and reiterated that affirmative action must be based on needs, merits and be market-friendly.
“In a multi-racial country, growth should not be a zero-sum game as there are reasons to worry that we will continue to be trapped as a middle-income country if we do not liberalise our economy and boost investment.
“We advocate that Bumiputeras should be given price preference in certain economic sectors when the economy is liberalised for open tender,” he said.
He added that the congress proposed a gradual reduction of the 30 per cent Bumiputera quota and the introduction of price preference to allow the community to compete on a equitable basis.
Dr Chua said Malaysia could only achieve its target in the 10th Malaysia Plan and New Economic Model (NEM) if it was able to attract domestic and foreign investment worth RM115 billion.
“In order to attract RM115 billion of private investment per annum under the 10th Malaysia Plan, we must ensure that our economy is competitive and vibrant.
“We can only achieve the target by liberalizing sectors such as oil and gas as well as telecommunication; rationalising subsidy and opening tender with price preference to Bumiputras,” he said.
An all-out war appeared to have broken out between MCA and Umno yesterday when Dr Chua Soi Lek accusing “some BN leaders” of failing to recognise past failures after Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein’s blunt reminder to the MCA to stick with BN’s struggles.
The MCA president said that the party was not afraid to side with its opposition foe DAP in issues that benefited the community and would not run away from making its stand known.
Only 9pc of Chinese like Soi Lek, poll shows
By Clara Chooi August 17, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 17 — Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek’s recent attempts to embolden the MCA appears to have failed to recapture the confidence of the Chinese community as a recent poll here found that only nine per cent of the electorate regard him as a capable leader.
Many believe that the veteran politician’s tainted past would hamper his ability to serve as an effective party president while some even think that he is an embarrassment to the Chinese community.
The Merdeka Center survey, carried out between June 27 and July 25, found that although the former health minister’s popularity among the party’s grassroots had secured him the president’s chair during the party polls in March, the common Chinese voter still finds it hard to look past his 2007 sex scandal.
Instead, the voters were more in favour of his predecessor Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat to lead the second largest component party in the Barisan Nasional (BN).
Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon scored even lower than his BN counterpart and was named by only one per cent of voters as a capable leader to represent the Chinese.
Both the leaders’ lack of support from the Chinese electorate was further expounded in a general sentiment among voters that the MCA and Gerakan, as Chinese-based parties, were becoming increasingly irrelevant.
Many people believe Dr Chua’s tainted past would hamper his ability to serve well, according to the findings of a recent poll. — File pic
A synopsis of the survey obtained by The Malaysian Insider showed that 62 per cent of voters were dissatisfied with the MCA’s performance, only 24 per cent were satisfied and only one per cent was very satisfied. Only 27 per cent felt that the MCA represented the interests of the Chinese community.
A similar pattern was shown for Gerakan, with 39 per cent of respondents expressing dissatisfaction while 19 per cent claimed otherwise.
The survey, conducted by a Malaysian research house, polled the opinions of 590 Chinese and 413 Malay respondents and included five focus group discussions with Chinese voters in several locations in Peninsular Malaysia.
The research also revealed that there were three main grouses about the MCA — that leaders were self-centred, that the party was subservient to Umno and that the party was marred by too many internal conflicts.
Indeed, the party’s polls in March were held amid internal strife which eventually led to a three-pronged tussle for the president’s chair among the incumbent Tee Keat, former president Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting and Dr Chua.
When Dr Chua took on the presidency, he immediately moved to wipe up the milk spilled by his predecessors, which had inadvertently led to the party’s dismal performance in Election 2008.
In recent days, the outspoken leader was reported to have made several bold statements, seen by some as the MCA’s ploy to remove the perception of its subservience to Umno.
Yesterday, the outspoken leader boldly said the party would not hesitate to side with its political foe DAP, if it was for the general good of the public.
He even moved to discredit Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein for calling on the MCA to remember the BN’s struggles in its fight for the Chinese community, saying that “some BN leaders” would be the eventual cause of the MCA’s doom.
However, while voters were discontented with the MCA and Gerakan, a significant number still felt that both parties should remain in the BN in order to retain multi-ethnic representation in the government, according to the results of the survey.
They also felt that although the parties had failed to speak out in the interest of the Chinese community, they still wielded more power than the opposition.
Several voters in the more rural areas also believed that MCA elected representatives would still be helpful in solving local issues, particularly matters that involved government applications.
The poll also found that the Chinese voters’ grouses did not just end with the MCA and Gerakan.
Results showed that a mere 12 per cent of the community were satisfied with Umno while 55 per cent were dissatisfied.
According to the synopsis of the survey obtained by The Malaysian Insider, one-third of the respondents chose to refrain from answering the question, believed to be out of fear.
This could ultimately mean that the Chinese voters’ distrust of Umno could likely be stronger than what the 55 per cent suggested.
The focus group discussions found that the most common reasons for the lack of support in the ruling party were that Umno was “unfair” to the non-Malays, its party leaders were “high-handed” and “autocratic” and that they were “extreme” in their ethnic rhetoric and policies.
On a whole, the poll found that the Chinese electorate no longer believed in the BN’s feasibility as a sound coalition that represented the views of all Malaysians.
In fact, the poll found that only 15 per cent of Chinese voters were willing to place their trust in the BN to safeguard their interests.
They also believed that the BN’s power-sharing model of community representation via ethnic-based parties like Umno, the MCA, MIC and Gerakan was no longer effective.
A total of 55 per cent of the Chinese respondents polled agreed with this view. They even felt that multi-ethnic parties would be more effective in representing their interests in comparison with ethnic exclusive parties and expressed interest in seeing national leaders working to that effect.
Focus group participants revealed that this was because Umno was too domineering while its other counterparts in the coalition were merely junior partners and held little clout.
They also believed that MCA and MIC leaders cared more for their own welfare than that of the communities they represented.
Ibrahim Ali tells Soi Lek not to be a Chinese warrior
By Clara Chooi August 17, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 17 – Perkasa chief Datuk Ibrahim Ali jumped at the opportunity to jeer at Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek today, mocking him for failing to impress the Chinese electorate despite his attempts to emulate DAP’s Lim Kit Siang and act like a “Chinese warrior”.
The Pasir MAS MP said he was not surprised that Dr Chua only commanded nine per cent of support from the Chinese community, claiming that the MCA president would forever be haunted by his previous sex scandal.
“I am not surprised only nine per cent of Chinese voters support Dr Chua. Reason – his pornographic CD.
“The Chinese have moral values,” he told The Malaysian Insider in a statement today.
He criticised Dr Chua for trying hard to regain Chinese support by “playing up sensitive issues” and accused him of trying to be seen as a “Chinese warrior”.
“Dr Chua thinks that by doing so, the Chinese will forget his sex video. But he is doing more damage to the Chinese,” he said.
Ibrahim claimed that Dr Chua’s recent attempts to embolden the MCA had only succeeded in making the Malays angry with the Chinese community.
“Because now, the Malays feel the Chinese are being too demanding. Their demands do not reflect the social contract as agreed on before we obtained our independence,” he said.
Ibrahim then accused Dr Chua of trying to be like DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang, calling it the “biggest joke of the year”.
He was responding the results of a survey, published today by The Malaysian Insider today, which showed that only nine per cent of the Chinese community regarded Dr Chua as a capable leader.
The survey, carried out between June 27 and July 25, found that although the former health minister’s popularity among the party’s grassroots had secured him the president’s chair during the party polls in March, the common Chinese voter still found it hard to look past his 2007 sex scandal.
The poll also revealed that the Chinese community would continue to rebuff the Barisan Nasional due to anger that the government had failed to safeguard their interests by introducing unfair national policies.
Ibrahim scoffed at the view however and sarcastically wished the Chinese community “good luck” in their attempts to change the government’s practices.
“If the Chinese reject BN, then replace (the BN) with whom? DAP? Then (there will be) disaster to the Chinese, to the Pakatan Rakyat.
“Can DAP work with PAS? Policy how? Anyway, good luck to the Chinese who forgot history and do not know the reality of Malaysian politics,” he said.
On Sunday, Ibrahim had described the MCA’s Chinese Economic Congress as “ungrateful” for calling for economic liberalisation.
He said that the congress’s demands showed greed and extremism, pointing out that the bumiputras in the country had already made many compromises and shown tolerance to the other communities over the years.
The racial time-bomb is ticking fast!
Opinion 2010-08-17 18:10
by Thomas Lee Seng Hock
Racism continues to rear its ugly head, more than half a century after our country gained in its independence in 1957.
The latest fiasco involves the principal of a school in Johor who has been reported to have said that Chinese students can return to China, and that the prayer strings worn by the Indian students are like a dog leash.
A total of 17 police reports have been lodged by parents against the nonchalant female school head who is rumoured to have some influential political support.
According to some parents who had lodged police reports, the school head had made the pejorative and derogative comments during the launching of the school’s Merdeka celebrations on Thursday 12 August 2010.
She was quoted as saying that “Chinese students are not needed here and can return to China or Foon Yew school. For the Indian students, the prayer string tied around their neck and wrist makes them look like dogs because only dogs are tied like that.”
Such offensive, insensitive and racist remarks can only be made by a rude and uncouth person, who is described in Bahasa Malaysia as kurang ajar. And it is simply incredible and beyond comprehension that such a shallow, insecure, and blockhead person could be appointed a school principal.
The school head’s verbal racist assault on the students is not the only ugly racism incident in recent time
Few weeks ago, certain school heads flexed their Little Napoleon muscles to close or ban the formation of non-Muslim religious clubs and societies in their schools.
During the Permatang Pauh parliamentary by-election in 2008, Penang’s Bukit Bendera Umno chief Datuk Ahmad Ismail referred to the Chinese Malaysians as “pendatang” or immigrants. Following a massive public outcry over his remarks, Ahmad was suspended by Umno for three years, but the suspension was lifted just a year later in December 2009.
In February 2010, Datuk Nasir Safar, the special officer to the prime minister, said at a 1-Malaysia seminar that “Indians came to Malaysia as beggars and Chinese especially women came to sell their bodies”. Although there was widespread demand that Nasir be punished for his scornfully abusive, offensive and seditious remarks, no action was taken against him.
The most shocking thing is that, instead of censuring Nasir for his obviously seditious remarks, the federal government, through Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz, told Parliament in June 2010 that it lacked proof that Nasir meant to incite racial ill-will, based on Section 3(1) of the Sedition Act, despite his unilateral and unequivocal labelling of Chinese and Indians as ‘pendatangs’ and reference to Chinese women as ‘prostitutes’.
In Decmeber 2009, Datuk Seri Nazri Aziz himself has condemned and castigated the Umno-owned newspaper Utusan Malaysia for its racist propaganda, saying that the newspaper must accept that Malaysia is a multi-racial country.
Over the last few years, the Utusan Malaysia has been running daily stories and comments that have provoked and incited debates and disputes on racial matters.
The Utusan is well-known as a mouthpiece for Umno ultra-nationalists and a tool for promoting the Ketuanan Melayu (Malay supremacy) policy.
And, don’t forget the controversial Biro Tata Negara (BTN) or National Civics Bureau courses which Nazri admitted were racist. Those in the alternative coalition Pakatan Rakyat have also claimed that the BTN propagated political indoctrination.
Then there is the “Allah” controversy, which, whether or not we recognize or admit it, has been turned into a racial-religious issue, although fundamentally it is a human right and constitutional matter.
Then we have the ultra-Malay group Perkasa led by Datuk Ibrahim Ali, and finds support from luminaries such as former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, which has been in the forefront of championing Malay rights.
Associated with Perkasa is another ultra-Malay group Majlis Perundingan Melayu or the Malay Consultative Council which has also been very vocal in the arena of racial polemic.
And in reaction to these bigoted groups, some idiots from a certain political party want to form a Chinese Perkasa to counter-challenge their form of racial fanaticism with its own form of racial fanaticism. Sometime I wonder how such witless foolish people, with such gullible and naïve character, are elected to leadership positions in their party.
We can observe and note that those playing racial political card are obstinately convinced of the superiority or correctness of their own views and opinions, and are deeply prejudiced against those who hold different opinions, particularly those of other races.
Certainly, the racial time-bomb is ticking fast and set to explore anytime soon if nothing is done now to arrest the fanatical racial trend. The most severe action must be taken against those who instigate, provoke, and incite racial discontentment.
Appropriate actions, including sacking and jail term, must be taken fast against those like the Johor school head and other racially bias civil servants who are clearly unfit to be in the government administration of a multi-racial, multi-religious, multi-cultural, multi-lingual society like ours.
The racial time-bomb is ticking fast!