DAP had raised the Tan Seng Hin issue not to question the state immigration autonomy powers but to challenge the undemocratic and gross abuse of power in expelling and banning Tan from re-entering Sarawak, breaking up his family and disregarding the fact that he had contributed to the state and made a home in Sarawak for the last 23 years without any valid or legitimate reason.
It is public knowledge that Dr. George Chan had not been happy with Tan because as Secretary of the Miri Hainan Association, Tan had crossed swords with the SUPP leader over the change of teaching medium and character of Chinese independent secondary education in Miri to prepare the students for future enrolment at the Miri campus of the Curtin University of Western Australia.
Disagreement, however intense, cannot justify abuse of power and violation of human rights – or Sarawak cannot claim to be a democratic society which respects human rights and uphold the rule of law.
Tan Seng Hin is also a registered voter in Miri and he is entitled to exercise his constitutional right to cast his vote on polling day on Thursday.
Tomorrow, Sunday (23rd September 2001), Tan will fly into Miri from Kuala Lumpur, accompanied by the DAP MP for Seputeh, Teresa Kok, to exercise his constitutional right to cast his vote on polling day as well as to be re-united with his family.
I call on Dr. George Chan and the Sarawak Barisan Nasional to respect human rights as well as the constitutional right of Tan Seng Hin to vote in Sarawak general election on Thursday by allowing him to return to Miri tomorrow to reunite with his family and to be able to cast his vote in the Sarawak state general election on Thursday.