Sun. Jul 21st, 2024

Media statement by DAP Member of Parliament and Publicity Secretary for Wanita DAP Kasthuri Patto on Tuesday 31 October 2017 in Parliament Malaysia, Kuala Lumpur.

MCA’s Ti Lian Ker should remove his foot out of his mouth when making allegations against the DAP when it was Datuk Seri Najib Razak, then acting UMNO Youth Chief and now Barisan Nasional Chairman rallied the rowdy, racist crowd in 1987 at the TPCA Stadium 10 days before Operasi Lalang.


While it is a known fact that former Prime Minister and Home Minister Dr Mahathir was the mastermind behind the Operasi Lalang dragnet in 1987, Ti Lian Ker appears to try to play up the protest at the Thean Hou temple on the mass appointments of 100 senior assistants who were not Mandarin speaking in Chinese vernacular schools. The over 2000 people protest was countered by an UMNO rally, at the Tamilian Physical Cultural Association (TPCA) a week after the protest on 17 October, 10 days before the Operasi Lalang crackdown.

However, he conveniently forgot to mention one glaring fact.

Datuk Seri Najib Razak, the then acting UMNO Youth Chief was given a rousing welcome at the rally by the predominantly UMNO crowd, attended by members and supporters alike. Najib Razak, the key figure at the rally, stirred the already racially sparked crowd bearing vitriol banners of hatred against the Chinese. It is this same acting UMNO Youth Chief who spoke words of hatred, vilifying the very friends and supporters of his component party in his Barisan Nasional coalition 30 years ago who has been instrumental in implementing laws that threaten fundamental liberties. After the Operasi Lalang crackdown, a white paper had been tabled as an “important document” in Parliament in by the then Home Minister in 1988, entitled “Towards Preserving National Security” and in it reports of Najib himself, leading the rally, spewing hatred calls against the Chinese community.

Ti has totally missed the mark and is still in denial on the current state of affairs today under the Najib leadership, as a slew of equally draconian, unjust laws like the Peaceful Assembly Act, amendments to the Prevention of Crime Act, the Prevention of Terrorism Act, the Security Offences (Special Measures) Act, including Section 124B of the Penal Code for what his Barisan Nasional government regards “Whoever, by any means, directly or indirectly, commits an activity detrimental to parliamentary democracy shall be punished with imprisonment for a term which may extend to twenty years”.

What is not only peculiar and yet downright astonishing, is the fact that MCA Members of Parliament stood in the Dewan Rakyat and shamelessly voted in support of these draconian laws which threaten democracy, freedom and justice as enshrined in the Federal Constitution. Why ostracise the DAP now, when MCA had the opportunity to make a bold stand in the Cabinet and in Parliament against these laws which had incarcerated 8 MCA leaders under Operasi Lalang 30 years ago?

MCA having Members of Parliament and also Cabinet Ministers should have stood by the Opposition MPs in Parliament to vote against draconian Acts that were orchestrated, forced into laws that are all detrimental to Parliamentary democracy.

Ti Lian Ker and his party members are crying wolf, too little, too late as there will be no end to Operasi Lalang as it will most definitely repeat itself through the barrage of laws introduced, supported and passed in the Malaysian Parliament by none other than the Najib administration consisting of MCA Ministers, Deputy Ministers and MPs alongside those from UMNO, MIC and from other Barisan Nasional component parties.

The DAP had been steadfast, resolute and unwavering in the 50 years against any form of law that suppresses fundamental liberties as what Barisan Nasional has been doing for 60 years now. What is MCA’s stand on these laws as a Government?

MCA should stop behaving like a champion for human rights when it remains an accessory to Barisan Nasional and Najib’s leadership that propagate aggression against freedom, democracy and justice.

Kasthuri Patto

Member of Parliament for Batu Kawan

Democratic Action Party