(Penang, Thursday): I thank the people of Tanjong for giving me the chance to serve three terms as Member of Parliament, as well as the people of Malacca and Petaling Jaya for my four out of my seven-term Parliamentary membership in the last three decades from 1969 to 1999.
My 30 years of uninterrupted service as a Member of Parliament is not so much a personal odyssey but part of the political odyssey of the people of Malaysia for a better, more just, free and equal Malaysia.
In the past 30 years, with the support of the people of Malaysia, we have achieved a political breakthrough in establishing that Malaysia is a multi-racial, multi-lingual, multi-cultural and multi-religious nation and that the nation-building policy for Malaysia must be one of integration and not assimilation.
However, the greatest battle is not in the past but in the future, to achieve an even greater political breakthrough - to smash the Barisan Nasional mould of political hegemony and establish a New Malaysia to allow democracy to flower where all Malaysians, regardless of race or religion can enjoy justice, freedom and good governance.
It is time for Malaysians to transcend the differences of race, religion and even political beliefs to restore justice, freedom, democracy and good governance - where outrageous injustices manifested in the Lim Guan Eng and Anwar Ibrahim cases can never happen in our land but only in other countries whose moral values, public conscience and democratic traditions are less developed than ours.
This is why Opposition parties are coming together for the first time in Malaysian electoral history in the common cause to restore justice, freedom, democracy and good governance.
History will be made if the Opposition parties can agree on a "one-to-one" contest in the next general election.
The DAP and PAS cannot agree on the issue of an Islamic state, but we can agree that the time has come for the end to the systematic assault on justice, freedom, democracy and good governance by the Barisan Nasional government - and the minimum that must be done in the next general election is to end the two-thirds parliamentary majority of the Barisan Nasional which is the root cause of the ruthless assaults on human rights and democratic freedoms in Malaysia.