Walk the talk, Tee Keat!

By Thomas Lee
[email protected]
Monday 1 January 2010

MCA president Ong Tee Keat has made a bold declaration in his New Year message that he would be ready to lead the party to stand up to injustice, and engage any other like-minded forces to seek redress on issues of public concern.

“We have to be bold and we have to be loud if and when we have to. We need to transform and energise the MCA that will be fearless in championing equal opportunities and a level playing field, not only for the Chinese community, but for all Malaysians,” Tee Keat said in his message.

Brave words, indeed, but can Tee Keat really fulfill such a tall order he has set for himself and the MCA?

Since he was elected MCA president in October 2008, many major issues concerned with civil liberties and human and constitutional rights of the people have emerged, but has he or the MCA taken any firm and principled stand on them?

Take the case of the “Allah” issue. The matter basically concerns the fundamental human and constitutional rights of the people to freely use, without restraints or restriction, Bahasa Malaysia, the national language, in their worship and practice of their faiths. It is contended that Bahasa Malaysia rightfully belongs to all citizens of Malaysia and there should be absolutely no monopoly of its usage of any Bahasa Malaysia words by any one particular race or religion.

What has Tee Keat and the MCA done to fight for this fundamental citizenship right of the people? Has Tee Keat or the MCA make any stand concerning this issue?

Take another case, this time concerning the long-standing oppressive legal instrument called the Internal Security Act or the ISA in short. What is the view of Tee Keat and the MCA on the use of this harsh law to detain opposition politicians and human right advocates by the authoritarian regime of which the MCA is a part?
Tee Keat has boldly stated that he will lead the MCA to fight injustice. I challenge him make a public stand that he will support the revocation and repeal of this diabolical and repugnant legistration.

Another serious matter concerns the comments by Senior Federal Counsel Mohamad Naser Disa, who was quoted in theSun on Wednesday 25 November 2009, relating to proposed amendments to the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976 dealing with the situation where one spouse in a non-Muslim marriage converts to Islam.
If Naser is correctly quoted, then it seems that the Federal Government is mainly concerned that a man who converts to Islam is “cruelly treated” because he cannot break his previous marriage contract and get a divorce.

What has Tee Keat and the MCA to say about Naser’s comments which, if they accurately reflect the proposed amendments, show that the gross injustices currently being committed against non-Muslim spouses, mostly women, by their husbands who convert to Islam, by the syariah courts and syariah authorities, and by the civil courts will likely continue? The worrying thing is that he proposals, if accepted, could indirectly result in Islamic law being enforced on the non- Muslim spouses, especially wives.

If Tee Keat is truly concerned about fighting against injustice, let him come out with some concrete actions on the matter. Let him and the MCA ministers in the cabinet ensure that the non-Muslims will not be put at a disadvange by any amendment to the Law Reform (Marriage and Divorce) Act 1976.

These are just three of the major issues. There are many more. If Tee Keat is truly sincere and honest in wanting to “stand up to injustice, and engage any other like-minded forces to seek redress on issues of public concern”, then he must come out and make a clear stand on these fundamental issue. If he is not prepared to walk the talk, he should shut up, pack up and go into oblivion.

NOTE: Thomas Lee, who retired as a deputy editor in The Star, has been a socio-political analyst since he returned from studies in Australia in mid-1975.

  1. #1 by ktteokt on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 10:18 am

    Did this eunuch make the speech with one of his hands behind his back, crossing his fingers?

  2. #2 by boh-liao on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 10:28 am

    Forget OTK lah, wasting $$ 2 hold on 2 a position 2 enrich himself n his cronies
    Best congratulations to Zoe Foo n her parents on her brilliant performance in the Scottish Junior Open squash championships in Edinburgh
    She bagged the girls’ Under-13 title in superb style
    Her parents had to fork out their own money to send her n her brother there n to the British Junior Open

  3. #3 by Onlooker Politics on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 10:28 am

    “What has Tee Keat and the MCA done to fight for this fundamental citizenship right of the people? Has Tee Keat or the MCA make any stand concerning this issue?” (Thomas Lee)

    Since Tee Keat is a Buddhism follower, he should at least fight for his own right of freedom to circulate the Buddhism religious materials in a book written in Bahasa Melayu. Does Tee Keat have the gut to preach Buddhism in Bahasa Melayu?

  4. #4 by son of perpaduan on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 11:29 am

    Malaysia politic would evolve to another era if OTK joins the opposition. How I wish this day will take place. OTK struggling to save the sunken ship, if I will him, abandon ship and Uncle Lim or DSAI will lend him a helping hand without doubts.

  5. #5 by yhsiew on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 11:45 am

    OTK is “finished”.

    He has ruined his political future by getting free rides on Tiong’s jet plane and by not honoring his promise of stepping down as president of MCA after having failed to secure a majority vote in the EGM poll.

    I wonder who would trust OTK anymore.

  6. #6 by Onlooker Politics on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 11:55 am

    YB Kit,
    Sorry for deviating to the other topic.

    Singapore has just announced a quarterly economic growth rate on annualized basis of 3.5% for the last quarter of 2009, which helped reduce the whole year’s negative growth to report at a growth contraction of 2.1% for the whole year of 2009. It sounds to be a good news to Penang as Penang may experience the same kind of economic recovery in view of Penang’s similarity to Singapore in dependence on Electronics Sector for creation of employment opportunities.

    Although there is recovery in the Electronics Sector, I personally feel that Penang should encourage relocation of the labour-intensive electronic assembly plants from Penang Island to other Pakatan Rakyat controlled states such as Kedah and Kelantan. It is time for Penang State Government to plan for the future for building up the job opportunities in Penang in order to produce a series of higher value-added products and services. Tourism sounds to be a good choice which fits into the economic activities of upper value chain of high income earning. However, it is also good to maintain Penang as a centre for regional headquater location of Electronics, Electrical and Telecommunication Research and Development facilities in order to provide technical support and innovative talents to the surrounding states of Kedah, Kelantan and Perak.

    As Najib is bound to kick off a 10-year economic policy of high growth, high inflation and high public spending for bailing out the debt-ridden businesses of many Umnoputra companies, Penang State Government should attempt to preserve as many available state lands as possible at the moment so that PR’s state government may have plenty of lands available for sale in the future to attract the potential high value-added investors when the land prices in many BN controlled states like Johore and Melaka soar up quickly due to heavy land property speculations.

    Penang State Government should give encouragement for the setting up of foods and beverages production facilities in Penang as this line of business will tend to provide high value-added worth to the economy. Meanwhile, Pakatan Rakyat’s other states like Kedah and Kelantan can cooperate with Penang by encouraging more food crops, fruit tree planting and orchards in the land rich states in order to provide adequate sources of raw food supply to the foods and beverages manufacture bases in Penang.

    DAP and PAS can cooperate on the economic matters in order to promote a close tie between these two political parties. An improvement in inter-parties relationship is the most important first step for moving ahead towards Putrajaya!

  7. #7 by All For The Road on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 12:34 pm

    It’s mighty high time OTK should duly walk the talk and not talk the walk.

    Action speaks louder than words!

  8. #8 by taiking on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 12:43 pm

    Mca is in bn. Right? So why isnt grkumar defending the poor fella, OTK?

  9. #9 by Onlooker Politics on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 12:46 pm

    “The worrying thing is that the proposals, if accepted, could indirectly result in Islamic law being enforced on the non- Muslim spouses, especially wives.” (Thomas Lee)

    Reasonable care must be exercised by all parties concerned in order to prevent possible happening of the following controversial situation:
    “A married non-muslim man with kids is being tempted by an attractive Muslim woman to commit fornication or adultery. The man was caught by the religious authority and was forced to convert to Islam. Then the non-muslim members of the man’s family were automatically turned by the enforcement of Islamic law into Islam-converts, even with no prior consent from the non-muslim members!”

    Shall Tee Keat voice up and say something now!

  10. #10 by monsterball on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 1:13 pm

    I never trusted MCA at all.
    Ong Tee Keat can promise and swear to do things right…who cares.
    Najib is also swearing to do all things good for Malaysians.
    Why so much promises by UMNO and MCA on things…so nice to hear and read?
    Get it very very clear…as long as there is UMNO and MCA…there will be no Malaysian Malaysia or Najib like to twist it and call it…”1Malaysia”
    There wll always be.each race takes care of it’s own and those crooks like to cal that….diversity for unity.
    Yes…UMNO BARU loves to make simple things ..to be complicated…to keep on dividing the races and govern and Ong Tee Keat knows that too well.
    Until MCA pull out from the BN…OTK and everyone in MCA can keep on trying to win votes with their thick skins and low class acts…all to fight and stay as ministers for selfish reasons.
    Ong Tee Keat is a very very cunning man…and that’s why he can survive in dirty politics..which means…he must carry Najib’s balls.. to survive.
    He is a real disgrace to Malaysian Chinese.
    His mission to expose PKFZ is get Ling Liong Sik arrested. …to do one stunt to get him be trusted by Chinese.
    MCA is actually dead and gone…as close to MIC and Gerakan….right now.
    I will not waste too much time to think or know what Ong Tee Keat will do or not do….but yes…he can fool young voters with his bag if tricks.
    For that…we must keep on exposing this low class corrupted hypocrite….hanging on to UMNO’s kindness..to survive for persona benefits….never for Malaysian Chinese…what more for all Malaysians.
    MCA under Ling Liong Sik up to now…is not the same MCA anymore….exactly like UMNO BARU….totally different from original UMNO.
    Corruptions are encouraged. Buying votes are encouraged…race and religion politics ……never ending…actually being intensified..by Mahathir..completely supported by Ling Liong Sik…for 22 years and now..all are millionaires….fighting for their survivals….not for Malaysians.

  11. #11 by ekans on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 4:49 pm

    Probably, just like in that fairy-tale story where the carriage magically turns back into a pumpkin at the stroke of midnight, OTK was also hoping that MCA’s internal crisis will magically disappear at the stroke of midnight on 1st January 2010.

    By the way, Thomas Lee’s e-mail should be dated Friday 1 January 2010, not Monday.

  12. #12 by -ec- on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 5:03 pm

    ZERO VOTE for mca. let it sunset into history soon.

  13. #13 by frankyapp on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 5:12 pm

    To speaking loud and clear says Ong tee keat,wow,yeap it’s all sound pretty good but lets hope it’s not an empty whistle.Lets see how genuine is OTK. Lets see he dares to touch and try to open up this air-tightened can (Umno).I think the moment he touches it,let alone have time to shake it,he’s finished.OTK unless you wanna be SAPP’s yong teck lee,go ahead,if not just go back to your usual empty whistle blowing.

  14. #14 by Bigjoe on Saturday, 2 January 2010 - 7:36 pm

    OTK is full of bluster because he got rid of Wee Ka Siong and Liow Tiong Lai and manage to do a deal with his arch-enemy CSL. He screwed someone and so is feeling satiated. It does not matter who he screwed really. These people don’t care and they know MCA hordes also don’t care. Its all about power and the most important thing is to seen as gaining power over challengers..

    The only way to kick his ass is to, well, have someone kick his ass again..

  15. #15 by rahmanwang on Monday, 4 January 2010 - 3:04 pm

    MCA politicians are all full of bull.What has UMNO,MCA & MIC done to their people apart from enriching their party members?Yes there are many rich Malays Chinese and Indians.Most of them are politician who enriched themselves from corrupt practices.We are here paying the price of their rampant corruption.These are “leakages” that rakyat have to bear.

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