Both the MCA Team A and B factions should unite to ensure that the MCA leadership does not buckle under the unreasonable, unfriendly and undemocratic UMNO and Gerakan pressures to sack or discipline the MCA duo Tan Cheng Liang and Lim Boo Chang
by Lim Kit Siang
(Penang, Monday): The announcement by the MCA Deputy President Datuk Lim Ah Lek last week that he was prepared to re-activate his political career has been welcomed with elation by MCA Team B supporters.
Ah Lek’s announcement is timely, as this is the occasion for both the MCA Team A and B factions to unite to ensure that the MCA leadership does not buckle under the unreasonable, unfriendly and undemocratic UMNO and Gerakan pressures and demands to sack or discipline the two Penang MCA Assembly members, Tan Cheng Liang (Jawi) and Lim Boo Chang (Datuk Keramat) for abstaining in the motion by the DAP Assemblyman for Batu Lanchang, Law Heng Kiang, in the recent Penang State Assembly to defer the RM1.02 billion Penang Outer Ring Road (PORR) project until the RM400 million Jelutong Expressway is completed.
The decision of the UMNO Supreme Council on Friday that Tan and Lim should be sacked for breach of Barisan Nasional discipline even before the MCA leadership had met on the issue was most unprecedented, as it was public arm-twisting if not putting the pistol to the head of the MCA leadership to expel the two.
Are there any MCA leaders, whether in A or B Team, who is prepared to stand out publicly to protest against such unreasonable, unfriendly and undemocratic UMNO and Gerakan pressures?
It would however appear that the MCA President, Datuk Seri Ling Liong Sik had succumbed to the high-level UMNO and Gerakan pressure tactics, as indicated by the Mingguan Malaysia report yesterday of his weekend comments in Kuching, under the heading: “MCA mungkin pecat dua Ahli Dewan Undangan Negeri”.
The sacking of the two would be triply unfair, as firstly, the MCA leadership would be merely succumbing to the unreasonable, unfriendly and undemocratic UMNO and Gerakan pressures; secondly, the abstention of the two on the DAP motion on PORR in the Penang State Assembly is supported by the people of Penang; and thirdly, the precedent where no disciplinary action was taken against the four UMNO State Assemblymen in Terengganu who violated the party directive to oppose the Terengganu PAS Syariah Criminal Bill (Hudud and Qisas) in the Terengganu State Assembly on July 8, 2002 as three abstained and one was absent during the voting.
* Lim Kit Siang, DAP National Chairman