The 11 leading Chinese organisations were:
1. United Chinese School Committees Association of Malaysia (Dong
2. United Chinese School Teachers Association of Malaysia (Jiao Zong)
3. United Chinese School Alumni Association of Malaysia
4. Nanyang University Alumni Association of Malaysia
5. Taiwan Graduates Alumni Association of Malaysia
6. Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall
7. Federation of Guangdong Associations of Malaysia
8. Federation of Guangxi Associations of Malaysia
9. Federation of Sanjiang Associations of Malaysia
10. Federation of Fuzhou Associations of Malaysia
11. Huazi Research Centre
After seeking the widest possible endorsement by all the Chinese associations and organisations, the 17-Point Chinese Organisation Election Appeal was to be presented to all the political parties at the end of September, as the Preamble to the Election Appeal made it very clear that its primary purpose is to "call upon all political parties and candidates in the coming general elections to declare their support and endorsement of our appeals".
The Election Appeal received tremendous support and response from the Chinese associations and organisations, with endorsement by 1,848 Chinese associations nationwide.
However, even before the 17-Point Chinese Organisation Election Appeal was formally presented to the political parties at end of September, both ruling and opposition, it had become a non-issue as a result of the "political prowess" of the MCA President, Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik.
Yesterday, Liong Sik announced that the Cabinet had agreed to expand the National Economic Consultative Council (NECC) II to include representatives of the Federation of Malaysian Chinese Associations to facilitate discussion of the Malaysian Chinese Organisations 17-Point Election Appeal - implying that the Election Appeal is no more a public issue as it has been referred to the NECC II.
The shunting of the 17-Point Malaysian Chinese Organisation Election Appeal to the NECC II goes against its original objective that "all political parties and candidates" in the coming general election declare their support of the Appeal.
By claiming that the 17-Point Hua Tuan Election Appeal are "universal
principles which cover a broad consensus that can be accepted by all races"
and by shunting it to the NECC II, Liong Sik is trying to extricate MCA
from having to make a stand on the 17-Point Election Appeal,
as the MCA would then be found wanting!
The 2,000-odd Chinese organisations nationwide which have endorsed the Election Appeal should now decide whether to keep to the original objective of the Election Appeal to ask for support from all political parties in the coming general election or to allow it to be "cold-storaged" and shunted to NECC II.
Many of the issues and specific proposals in the Election Appeal are most inappropriate to be referred to the NECC II, as highlighted by the senseless and tragic police trigger-happy killing of Dr. Tai Eng Teck.
What is the use of Liong Sik declaring support for the "universal principles" of the Election Appeal, one of whose 17 points was on the need to restore public confidence in the police by establishing commissions of inquiry into all forms of police abuses of power, when Dr. Tai’s senseless and tragic killing was never even raised in the Cabinet. Furthermore, the NECC II is the wrong forum to discuss Dr. Tai’s killing or to ensure that Dr. Tai will be the last senseless victim of police trigger-happy shoot-outs in Malaysia.
The 17-Point Election Appeal contains at least 81 specific proposals, and Liong Sik should declare the MCA’s stand on these 81 specific proposals and not just "pass the buck" to the NECC II, which is the height of political irresponsibility for a political party in the run-up to a general election.
For instance, the third point of the Election Appeal on "Uphold human rights and justice" made six specific proposals, and I can declare tonight that most of them are already incorporated in the Barisan Alternative’s general election manifesto, which is in the final stage of preparation.
The specific proposals on human rights which are common to both the
Election Appeal and the Barisan Alternative’s election manifesto include:
The NECC II is again a completely inappropriate forum to discuss the issues of human rights and the people’s aspirations for justice, freedom and democracy in Malaysia.
As the objective of the 17-Point Malaysian Chinese Organisation Election Appeal is to "call upon all political parties to declare their support and endorsement", MCA, Gerakan and SUPP should declare that apart from their support for the "universal principles" of the Election Appeal, how many of its 81 specific proposals could also be supported by them.