http://dapmalaysia.org Forward Feedback
UMNO and PAS should stop their competition to turn Malaysia into an Islamic State in clear violation of 1957 Merdeka Constitution, 1963 Malaysia Agreement, 1970 Rukunegara and the 48-year nation-building “social contract” of country’s major communities
Speech at The 10th Anniversary Commemoration for DAP leader P. Patto in Ipoh
by Lim Kit Siang
(Ipoh,Saturday): The recent Parliamentary meeting has highlighted the unique role of DAP Members of Parliament which no other political party or MP could play in the highest political and legislative chamber of the land – to defend the 1957 Merdeka Constitution, the 1963 Malaysia Agreement, the 1970 Rukunegara and the 48-year “social contract” of the country’s major communities that Malaysia is a democratic, secular and religious nation with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic state.
In my 30 years in Parliament from 1969 to 1999, I had never heard the term “Islamic State” used by any Member of Parliament, whether PAS or UMNO, in parliamentary debate.
But the Malaysian Parliament which I returned to as MP for Ipoh Timor after the March 2004 general election is very different, with UMNO MPs like Datuk Badruddin Amiruldin (Jerai), who had never said anything about “Islamic State” when he was MP before 1999, now claiming to be champion of Malaysia as an Islamic State, to the extent that he had the temerity to make the seditious demand that MPs who are loyal to both the word and spirit of the 1957 Merdeka Constitution, 1963 Malaysia Agreement, 1970 Rukunegara and the 48-year “social compact” of our forefathers should leave Malaysia! This is why I called Badruddin an “opportunist” during a heated exchange in Parliament early this week.
This parliamentary sea-change took place in the last Parliament after the 1999 general election and Malaysians saw how the 2004 Budget debate in Parliament in September 2003 was hijacked, with the focus not on how Malaysia could become more competitive to become a world-class nation so that Malaysians can have higher standards of living and better quality of life, as having world-class universities, highest IT-literate population and among the world’s top ten least corrupt nations, but a competition between UMNO and PAS MPs as to who have the better claim to turn Malaysia into an Islamic State.
Even Abdul Malik Mydin’s successful swim across the English Channel in August 2003 in 17 hours 48 minutes took on a completely different character, with questions raised in Parliament as to how Malik could perform his prayers when he had to be in the English Channel for such long hours!
DAP MPs have returned to Parliament in the March 2004 general election with a clear mandate – to be the bulwark to defend the 1957 Merdeka Constitution, 1964 Malaysia Agreement, 1970 Rukunegara and the 48-year “social compact” of our forefathers, upheld by the first three Prime Ministers, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein Onn and the fourth Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad for the first 20 years of his 22-year premiership, that Malaysia had been founded as a democratic, secular and multi-religious nation with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic State. This is a mandate DAP MPs had discharged courageously in Parliament without fail in the past 16 months.
As I explained very clearly in Parliament early this week, DAP MPs have to speak out loud and clear in defence of the “social compact” agreed by the major communities on the secular basis of the Malaysian nation-building not just for the sake of the DAP or non-Muslim Malaysians, but for moderate Muslim Malaysians who still “the silent majority” of Muslims in the country as well as on behalf of MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP, PBS, Sabah and Sarawak Ministers and MPs who disagree but dare not give voice to their opposition to the “929 Declaration” of former Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad at the Gerakan National Delegates Conference on Sept. 29, 2001 that Malaysia was an Islamic State.
In fact, I was also speaking on behalf of the majority of UMNO MPs when declaring that the “social compact” reached by our forefathers of the major communities on attaining national independence in 1957 was that Malaysia was to be forever a democratic, secular and multi-religious nation with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic State.
I need, however, to make a qualification, which I spelt out in Parliament as well - that although I can lay claim to speak on behalf of MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP, Sabah and Sarawak Ministers and MPs that Malaysia was never conceived to be an Islamic State, I have to specifically exclude the Gerakan President, Datuk Dr. Lim Keng Yaik and the Gerakan Secretary-General Chia Kwang Chye as both had publicly asserted that Malaysia is not only an Islamic State but had been an Islamic State from “Day One” when Malaysia achieved Independence in 1957.
DAP MPs are not anti-Islam or disrespectful of Muslims when we defended the secular basis of Malaysian constitution and nation-building, and I have been most encouraged by the support that I have received, not only by non-Muslims but also by Muslims, on the DAP’s unequivocal stand in Parliament rejecting the thesis that Malaysia is an Islamic State.
Malaysia’s return to the “social compact” of our forefathers and the 1957 Merdeka Constitution, the 1963 Malaysia Agreement and 1970 Rukunegara is an indispensable prerequisite for the future success and greatness of Malaysia in the 21st century of globalization and liberalisation, and for this reason, I wish to make two calls:
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP
Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman