I refer to the article titled, “DAP members told to toe the line over khat controversy” by FMT dated 6.8.2019 and wish to state that the contents of same could not be further from the truth.
The article claims a DAP leader had said party Secretary General Lim Guan Eng was unhappy with members who had “whacked the (khat) policy” and “put the party in a difficult position”.
Worse still, the said leader is said to have falsely claimed that Lim had said members should consider other communities and not the Chinese, implying that somehow the views of the Chinese community have been sidelined in the matter.
I also do not recall Lim saying that some leaders had made “it seem like they were against Jawi itself, which shouldn’t have been the case” as claimed in the said report.
Needless to say, the said leader chose to remain anonymous and not open him or herself to being challenged on the matter.
I was present at the said meeting and can confirm that the claims above are not true.
In fact, members were given the freedom to express their views on the khat issue without any restrictions and to even suggest possible solutions to the same. None of us were told to watch our words or that we were not entitled to be concerned about the issue.
No doubt, the leadership, after hearing all of us for nearly five hours, did say that an official statement on the matter will follow which was to be expected since the entire purpose of the meeting that day was to hear the views of party members first.
It is unfortunate that certain leaders choose to falsely tarnish the image of the party and hide behind the cloak of anonymity.
In the circumstances, it is necessary to correct the misperceptions that may arise from the said article and set the record straight.
Dated this 7th of August, 2019.
MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT
CHAIRMAN NATIONAL LEGAL BUREAU
DEMOCRATIC ACTION PARTY