In the 1999 general election, DAP wants to focus all its energies to bring about a new paradigm shift in Malaysian politics by smashing the Barisan Nasional two-thirds majority and political hegemony, whether nationally or at the Penang state level.
I do not expect my contesting in Bukit Bendera parliamentary constituency and Kebun Bunga state constituency would convince the Gerakan leaders that the DAP has no "Tanjung 4" plan, but the message should be clear that in the Penang state election, we want to focus on the failure of the Majlis Perbandaran Pulau Pinang (MPPP) under the presidency of Dr. Teng Hock Nam to improve the quality of life of the people on the Penang Island.
Before I proceed further, I want to thank the people of Tanjung for the great support they had given me in the last three general elections, 1986, 1990 and 1995. It had been my great privilege to represent the great constituency and people of Tanjung, and I hope that in my 13 years as MP of Tanjung, I had helped to make the name Tanjung famous not only in Malaysia but also internationally - as the premier constituency in the country concerned about the great issues of justice, freedom, democracy and good governance.
I believe that Tanjung will be in good hands for the DAP Parliamentary candidate Chow Kon Yeow would prove to be an outspoken and distinguished voice, not only for Tanjung, but also for Penang and the country in Parliament if he is given the chance to be the MP for Tanjung on Nov. 29.
As I said, the battle for Bukit Bendera and Kebun Bunga is to put in the very centre of the Penang state elections the failure of the State Government and the MPPP to improve the quality of life of people of Penang.
Five years after giving the Barisan Nasional virtual total State Assembly victory, with only the lone DAP Assemblywoman Chong Eng to face the juggernaut of 32-strong Barisan Nasional Assembly team, the quality of life on the Penang Island is now even worse than before the 1995 general election.
Penang has lost it lustre as the Pearl of the Orient. Ten years ago, the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad said Penang had become the "rubbish dump" of the Orient. In the past five years, Penang has become a mega-rubbish dump of the orient, with the MPPP failing miserably in ensuring that "Penang Leads" in terms of cleanliness in local government.
In the past five years, Penang had acquired another notoriety, as the Watery City of the Orient - with large parts of the island paralysed by flash floods after a small downpour. Traffic congestion is a nightmare in Penang.
The Nov. 29 general election is the opportunity for the people of Penang to pass a verdict on the MPPP and the Penang State Government in the past five years for their abysmal failure to ensure that "Penang Leads" in improving the quality of life of the people as well as in Muncipal governance.
Nationally, DAP calls on the people of Penang to show that "Penang Leads" and elect seven DAP MPs from Penang who will provide the base for a political breakthrough smashing the political hegemony of the Barisan Nasional by ending its two-thirds majority in Parliament.
The Barisan Nasional and its predecessor had never lost its two-thirds parliamentary majority in the previous nine general elections in 42 years. It is no easy task to deny the Barisan Nasional two-thirds majority, requiring Barisan Nasional to be defeated in at least 65 seats.
At present, no single opposition party, whether DAP, KeADILan or PAS
can deny the Barisan Nasional two-thirds majority. For instance,
PAS is contesting in 58 parliamentary constituencies in Peninsular Malaysia
in the Nov. 29 general election, which is far short of the 65 seats needed
to deprive the Barisan Nasional its two-thirds majority - and nobody is
suggesting that PAS can win all these 58 seats.
Collectively, however, the Barisan Alternative stands a chance of denying the Barisan Nasional two-thirds majority, with DAP, KeADILan and PAS each winning about 20- 25 seats so that the combined Barisan Alternative can muster some 70-75 parliamentary seats.
This is why the DAP has teamed up with KeADILan, PAS and PRM in the Barisan Alternative, not to establish an Islamic State as claimed by MCA and Gerakan, but to restore justice, freedom, democracy and good governance.
If DAP cannot win the seven parliamentary seats we are contesting in Penang, then it is very unlikely that we can succeed to make the tenth general election the most historic in Malaysian history which sees the end of Barisan Nasional political hegemony and two-thirds majority.