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Call on Attorney-General to prosecute under the sedition law without fear or favour political leaders particularly from Umno who had been raising the spectre of May 13 to threaten riots and bloodshed against Malaysians for defending their legitimate citizenship and constitutional rights
(Parliament, Tuesday) : Deputy Prime Minister and Umno Deputy President, Datuk Seri Najib Razak said yesterday that Umno is considering whether to continue having live telecast of its general assembly in the future.
He acknowledged that some speakers at the Umno general assembly last week had gone overboard, saying they were inexperienced when debating sensitive racial issues.
Najib said sometimes inexperienced speakers got "carried away" by the occasion and ended up playing to the gallery.
Is Najib suggesting that it would be all right if the insensitive, extremist, incendiary and seditious speeches made last week had been made in a closed-door Umno General Assembly instead of being carried live to the nation and the world over Astro’s Channel 94?
The problem is not in the live telecast of the Umno General Assembly but in the racism, hatred and sedition spewed by some Umno leaders and delegates – which must be condemned as racist, wrong, seditious and completely unacceptable whether made in a closed-door or live telecast meeting.
Najib’s attempt to excuse these extremist, incendiary and seditious speeches on the ground that they were made by inexperienced speakers who got “carried away…playing to the gallery” does not bear scrutiny, as the worst offenders were all experienced Umno leaders and delegates – including one who was a former Cabinet Minister for 16 years and for several years held the high posts of Umno Secretary-General and Barisan Nasional Secretary-General.
All the following Umno delegates who made the extremist, incendiary and seditious utterances are not “inexperienced” but very seasoned Umno politicians:
In fact, Abdullah had last week expressed endorsement for the Umno Youth Assembly and in his winding-up speech for the Umno General Assembly on Friday expressed sentiments which can only be concluded, nationally and internationally in view of the world live telecast of the proceedings, as condoning the insensitive, extremist, incendiary and seditious speeches.
With Malaysia increasingly losing the edge of competitiveness in the face of the merciless challenges of globalization, Malaysians particularly the general assembly of Umno, the dominant party in the ruling coalition, should be focusing on how to attract more FDIs, restore the quality of Malaysian education and the international ranking of Malaysian universities as world-class universities, deliver the Prime Minister’s pledge to eradicate poverty to check the nation’s plunge in the Transparency International Corruption Perception Index.
Instead, the Umno and Umno Youth general assemblies were full of fire and brimstone with extremist, incendiary and seditious utterances having a field day, raising the question whether Umno is really committed to the Bangsa Malaysia objective of Vision 2020 with the waving of the May 13 spectre and warning of bloodshed.
In the past eight general elections since 1969, the May 13 spectre had been raised to frighten non-Malay voters from exercising their democratic and constitutional right to vote according to their choice and consicence
Now, the May 13 spectre is being raised, not once in every four years in a general election, but once in two years – as the last time the May 13 threat was raised was by the MP for Jerai and Deputy Umno Speaker, Badruddin Amirulddin who waved a book on the May 13, 1969 racial riots at the 2004 Umno general Assembly in September 2004, warning that questioning Malay rights was akin to stirring a hornet’s nest.
All the talk about national unity, nation-building, Bangsa Malaysia, unity in diversity are just empty rhetoric if opportunistic and irresponsible politicians are allowed to practice political blackmail to trot out the May 13 threat, whether once every four or five years during the general election or now more frequently, once in two years.
Are these irresponsible Umno leaders, who have become so narrow in their outlook as illustrated by Badruddin’s “Ini negara kami” outburst in Parliament yesterday, excluding non-Malays as rightful citizens of Malaysia on the eve of half-a-century of nationhood celebrations, to be allowed to continue to play the racist May 13 card to undermine Malaysia’s multi-racial society?
I call on the Attorney-General, Tan Sri Ghani Patail to prosecute under the sedition law without fear or favour political leaders particularly from Umno who had been raising the spectre of May 13 to threaten riots and bloodshed against Malaysians for defending their legitimate citizenship and constitutional rights
Three reports have been lodged so far in connection with the May 13 threat and the incendiary and seditious speeches at the Umno general assembly last week, viz:
A police report will be lodged tomorrow against Badruddin Amiruldin for his May 13 threat at the 2004 Umno general assembly in September 2004, as there is no time-bar for the criminal offence of sedition.
If the 50th anniversary of Malaysian nationhood to be celebrated in a massive scale, involving great public expenditures is to be meaningful, the government must demonstrate that it will not allow the peace, welfare and well-being of a plural Malaysia to be held to ransom by political opportunists and desperadoes who are prepared to threaten inter-racial understanding and goodwill by periodically raising the spectre of May 13 to further their own selfish political interests.
Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic
Planning Commission Chairman
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman