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BA Should Honour Undertakings
By Lim Kit Siang
4/3/2001 2:16 pm Sun
[Pihak BA harus sentiasa berwaspada dengan taktik memecah-belahkan
perpaduan antara mereka. Parti itu hanyalah wadah (bekas) untuk berjuang.
Ramai orang berjuang dengan tidak berparti tetapi mereka muncul setiap
kali bila dipanggil untuk pergi. Dalam perhimpunan reformasi, soal nama,
kaum dan parti sudah 'tiada' lagi - yang ada cuma reformasi. Soal pokoknya
ialah isu dan semua ugama di dalam dunia ini (kecuali ugama ciptaan manusia)
mahu membina nilai masyarakat dan kemanusiaan.
The issue is not Teoh Teik Huat's application to join Keadilan but whether
solemn undertakings made by Barisan Alternative parties to each other are
serious and should be honoured
For two days in succession, the Barisan Nasional-controlled media have gone
to town over the latest unfortunate episode in DAP-Keadilan relations, with
New Straits Times continuing to paint me to be on a warpath after its
Tuesday frontpage report with the headline "Angry Kit Siang to stay away
from DAP-Keadilan meetings".
When DAP and Barisan Alternative leaders appear on the front-page or are
given prominence by Barisan Nasional-controlled media, it is not because of
any sense of fair and responsible reporting but invariably because of a
political agenda to slant news and to try to discredit the Opposition by
presenting it in the worst possible light.
This was why I refused and avoided an interview when requested by TV3 yesterday.
I have just spoken to the New Straits Times Penang bureau chief, Noor Adzman
Baharuddin who covered the media conference at the Penang DAP State
headquarters on Monday on the SJK © Damansara school issue, and who took the
opportunity to ask me about my reaction to the latest development in
He said I was at least "unhappy", to which I agree, but I was not "angry" at
the media conference - with another English newspaper wrongly reporting
that I was boycotting all Barisan Alternative meetings. I thank Noor Adzman
for his private apology at the New Straits Times report stating that I was
"angry", suggesting that I was on a warpath, when I was quite
matter-of-fact in my response.
I am not "angry" but sad, unhappy, disappointed and exasperated at the
latest deterioration in DAP-Keadilan relations.
It is the right of Keadilan to decide on who it wants to admit as a member.
It is the right of Teoh Teik Huat to decide which political party he wants
to apply to join as a member.
It is the right of Keadilan President, Datin Seri Dr. Wan Azizah to say on
Saturday night that Teoh's application would have to "undergo the normal
application process like any other application".
It is the right of Keadilan secretary-general Anuar Tahir to tell
malaysiakini on Monday that he had not received any application forms from
DAP members to join Keadilan and that as the secretary-general, he was
supposed to receive these applications.
It is the right of the Penang Keadilan deputy chairman Cheah Kah Peng to
tell Kwang Wah Jit Poh and other Chinese press on Monday that the Keadilan
Supreme Council had already officially accepted Teoh's application at its
meeting in Bukit Mertajam on Saturday.
It is the right of Teoh Teik Huat to make a not-so-subtle attack on me in a
media conference in Penang yesterday.
All these are not the issues which have made me sad, unhappy, disappointed
and exasperated about DAP-Keadilan relations, as the issue is not Teoh Teik
Huat's application to join Keadilan but whether solemn undertakings made by
Barisan Alternative parties to each other are serious and should be honoured.
It is the right of Keadilan to decide on who it wants to admit as a member
which is a different and separate issue as to whether component parties in a
political front should be ever sensitive and respectful of each other,
especially in honouring solemn undertakings and commitments made at the
Barisan Alternative Leadership Council.
I thank Keadilan Deputy President, Dr. Chandra Muzaffar for acknowledging that the Barisan Alternative Leaders' Council had made a decision, released later in a media statement dated 28th April 1999 signed by Dr. Azizah, Dato Fadzil Noor (President, PAS), Dr. Syed Husin Ali (President, PRM) and myself as DAP Secretary-General laying down three principles binding on all Barisan Alternative parties on applications by former members of another party, namely:
It is very unfortunate that several national and state Keadilan leaders have
publicly denied that there was ever such a Barisan Alternative agreement.
At the DAP CEC meeting in Petaling Jaya last night, DAP Deputy
Secretary-General and MP for Bukit Mertajam, Sdri Chong Eng, has been
appointed to replace me in Barisan Alternative discussions and meetings
affecting DAP-Keadilan relationship.
I will continue to attend the Barisan Alternative meetings as I am still
committed to the concept of Barisan Alternative to restore justice, freedom,
democracy and good governance to usher the country through a new
political transition to create a new politics in Malaysia which is not so
race-dominated but more issues-centred.