(Penang, Sunday): MCA President and Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Dr Ling Liong Sik yesterday made one of the most extraordinary statements ever issued by a political leader in the history of Malaysian politics.
He asked all quarters, including Suqiu or the Malaysian Chinese Organisations Election Appeals Committee, to heed Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad's 43rd Merdeka Day Message and its reminder against inflaming racial sentiments as it was "for the good of all communities in the country and for the sake of national stability".
Ling is the first MCA leader to praise Mahathirís for his 43rd Merdeka Message which likened the Suqiu Committee to the extremist and fanatical Al-Maíunah movement which brutally tortured and murdered two security personnel after the Grik arms heists and to those of the "communists in the past" for "fanning racial sentiments", when it had had been regarded as most outrageous, unbecoming of the Prime Minister because of the baseless comparisons and highly detrimental to the cause of national unity not only by the Malaysian Chinese but by all right-thinking Malaysians regardless of race.
Ling said Malaysia's plural society of multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural citizens required all quarters to exercise restraint when dealing with sensitive issues.
Bernama reported that when asked on Suqiu's plan to see Mahathir on the issue, Ling said:
Ling is now blaming Siqiu for not exercising restraint and publicly raising sensitive issues which should only be raised "at a proper forum with suitable persons".
How can Ling blame Sique for insensitivity when together with Gerakan President, Datuk Seri Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and SUPP Deputy President, Datuk Law Hieng Ding Liong Sik publicly announced full endorsement of the 17-point Suqiu on August 17 last year, and after the Cabinet meeting of Sept. 22, announced that the Suqiu had been "accepted in principle" by the Cabinet?
Did Ling realise that what he said yesterday was an indictment of his political insensivity in giving public endorsement to Suqiu? Is this what Ling meant with his statement yesterday?
In evading the question whether Suqiu would have to be reviewed, Ling has only highlighted the MCA, Gerakan and SUPPís full and unconditional endorsement of Suqiu last August - whether they stand stand or have been withdrawn.
Ling and Keng Yaik should declare clearly, honestly and unequivocally
whether MCA and Gerakanís full and unconditional endorsement of Suqiu
last August still stands and is unaffected by the UMNO Youth furore
over Malay special rights or whether MCA and Gerakan have withdrawn or
suspended their endorsement of Suqiu to subject it to review as a result
of UMNO Youth pressures and Mahathirís 43rd Merdeka Day Message.