Mahathirís speech at Council of Foreign Relations is a disgraceful first in our  42-year history where the Malaysian   Prime Minister had to appeal to foreigners to intervene in our domestic politics and  support the ruling coalition against the Opposition


Media Statement
by Lim Kit Siang
 

(Petaling Jaya, Thursday): The speech by the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad on "Malaysiaís Political and Economic Priorities Today" at the Council on Foreign Relations luncheon in New York on Monday is most unfortunate, where the Prime Minister of Malaysia set aside  national honour, pride and dignity to plug for foreign support for the ruling political parties in the Barisan Nasional as against the Malaysian opposition.

Mahathirís speech is a disgraceful first in the nationís 42-year history  where the Malaysian  Prime Minister had to go to a foreign land to appeal to foreigners to intervene in our domestic politics and support the ruling coalition against the Opposition.

I find Mahathirís action most unbelievable and incomprehensible, especially as he and the other Barisan Nasional leaders have been going round  the country in the past year  falsely accusing Opposition parties and leaders of disloyalty for being stooges of foreign powers and countries.

Going by Mahathirís past denunciations, the Prime Minister has now committed this  very act of disloyalty to Malaysia in going to New York to plead for foreign support for the Barisan Nasional government!

The first three Prime Ministers of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak and Tun Hussein Onn never had to go to foreign lands to appeal for foreign support for the ruling parties in the domestic political battle and there is no reason why Mahathir should set such an unhealthy and undesirable  precedent.

The political future of Malaysia must be decided by Malaysians themselves, and we do not want any foreigners whether it be the US Council on Foreign Relations or any other body in any other country  to interfere with the sovereign right of Malaysians to determine our political destiny, whether it be to break the political hegemony of the Barisan Nasional by denying and ending its unbroken two-thirds parliamentary  majority in the next general election or to usher in a new political scenario where there is full government respect for justice, freedom, democracy and good governance.

If Opposition leaders had spoken at the Council of Foreign Relations using the very same language as Mahathir but  urging support of foreigners for the Opposition against the Barisan Nasional, they would be accused of disloyalty and even being traitors of the country.  Why should a different standard apply for Barisan Nasional leaders or Mahathir?

(30/9/99)


*Lim Kit Siang - Malaysian Parliamentary Opposition Leader, Democratic Action Party Secretary-General & Member of Parliament for Tanjong