Soi Lek’s impossible dream

by Thomas Lee Seng Hock

MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek has appealed to the Chinese to review their perception of the party and reevaluate its past and present contributions, especially on matters affecting the community.

In an apparent desperate endeavour to try to redeem whatever remains of the party’s credibility, integrity and authenticity among the Chinese, Chua claims indirectly that the community has never rejected the party, but just went uncontrollably overboard in voting for a strong opposition in the last general election.

In an interview with Malaysiakini on Wednesday 8 June 2011, Chua claims that the Chinese want some representatives in the government to articulate their frustrations, and also want a strong opposition to keep a check on the government, but “sometimes, when they do this balancing act, they go haywire.”

Chua claims that, deep down, the Chinese still want to be represented in the Barisan Nasional government, but since the community could not coordinate among themselves, they had ended up with more elected representatives in the opposition.

“In their heart, they said: ‘Oh, we want to have a stronger opposition’. But in the end, everybody voted for the opposition, resulting in nobody in the government,” he said.

In other words, Chua thinks that the results of the last general election, when the MCA was totally wiped out in Penang and sent packing in Selangor, Perak and elsewhere, are merely a freak electoral caprice and do not reflect the actual sentiment of the Chinese community.

During the last general election in March 2008, the MCA won only 15 of the 40 parliamentary seats it contested and succeeded in merely 31 of the 90 state seats, losing them mainly to the DAP. The MCA was totally wiped out in Penang, losing every seat it contested at both federal and state level.

Chua, apparently still in a reverie, thinks that the MCA still has a soft spot in the heart of the community, and that the party would bounce back into favour with the Chinese community at the next general election.

He cited various so-called achievements of the party, claiming credit for getting more federal funding for Chinese primary schools, getting better recognition for the United Examination Certificate of the Chinese independent schools, and helping to develop mutual recognition of university degrees between Malaysia and China.

Chua may think that the Chinese are fools for buying his so-called achievements. Any person with a bit of common sense knows that had not the alternative coalition of the DAP, PAS and PKR caused a massive electoral cataclysm at the last general election, the Umno-controlled Barisan Nasional government would not have granted such concessions to allow the MCA a safe-face reprieve to claim credit for them.

Anyway, the matters Chua claims that the MCA managed to “fight” for the Chinese are matters of essential rights which the community must be accorded without any need to ask or bargain for. To say to say that the community needs the MCA to negotiate for them is to admit the lack of power of the party within the ruling Barisan Nasional administration and its failure in being the true community representative in the government. Its position and relevance in the government are certainly suspect.

And in order to project the MCA in good light, Chua resorted to a smear campaign against the state administrations controlled by the alternative coalition Pakatan Rakyat, especially Penang and Selangor.

Chua cashed in on the current land disputes in Selangor involving the Sungai Buloh nursery and the Kampung Kerandang land, and alleged that the Pakatan Rakyat state government made a mess of the matters. He doesn’t seem to really understand the logistic and long-term practical implications involved, but just wants to score political points by exploiting the disputes.

Chua also claimed that the Pakatan Rakyat Selangor state government allowed “thousands” of reflexology and entertainment outlets to flourish in Klang, implying that the alternative coalition is causing moral decline in the royal town.

He also alleges that the Pakatan Rakyat state administrations in Kedah and Penang have allowed the water tariff to increase by 20%.

Chua has given a misrepresentation on the Penang water tariff, claiming that the tariff had increased by 20%.

The fact is that the Guan Eng administration has not increased the heavily-subsidized rates for domestic consumers, but only imposed a water conservation charge to reduce water wastage.

Actually, only water tariffs for business have been increased to meet the production cost. Penang, meanwhile, still has the lowest water tariffs in the country for both domestic and business users.

To make a sweeping claim that the Guan Eng administration had increased the water tariff by 20% is to tell a very despicable lie, unbecoming of a national political leader.

The most outrageous claim, however, is Chua’s statement that Penang under Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng of the DAP is now running on a deficit budget, which the MCA boss says would get worse next year.

Chua is either shockingly nescient and ignoramus, or a deliberate liar. The facts and figures are out in the open for all and sundry to see.

Since the Pakatan Rakyat took control of the Penang state government from the Barisan Nasional after the March 2008 general election, the state has recorded the biggest surpluses in the nation’s history with RM88 million in 2008, RM77 million in 2009 and RM33 million in 2010, as certified by the Auditor-General in his report.

The solid and sound financial management by the Guan Eng administration also resulted in the heavily deficit-ridden Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP) being saved from bankruptcy within just a year of financial rejuvenation.

The Guan Eng administration, guided by the principles of competency, accountability and transparency (CAT), managed to lead the MPSP to post RM41 million in budget surpluses since 2008 compared to the big deficits it recorded from 2000 to 2007 under the Barisan Nasional administration, which amounted to a whopping RM230 million.

It should also be noted that the Guan Eng administration is the only government in Malaysia, whether state or federal, to be highly commended by
sTransparency International for its anti-corruption efforts.e

Chua Soi Lek’s current attempt to woo the Chinese to support the MCA by attacking the Pakatan Rakyat, especially the DAP, is obviously and action in futility. The community in general has lost complete faith in the MCA, especially when its present set of leaders are found wanting.

In a commentary on the MCA I wrote in March 2011 when I was still chief editor of, I made several observations of the party which I believe are still relevant. I am repeating them here::

Although Chua and the MCA are attempting to regain the middle ground lost en masse by the party in 2008, the party faces two big obstacles – one internal, and the other external.

The internal obstacle is surely its current leadership, which is composed of out-dated and spent political players, some with very weird and bizarre ideas like the one who proposed setting up a “Chinese Perkasa” to challenge the Malay rights group Perkasa, and some whose public comments of vital issues show their height of folly.

I think almost none of the current leaders will be able to do well if they are to contest in the next general election. The ground zero perception of them is generally negative. According to a Merdeka Center survey in 2010, only 9% of the Chinese voters have any respect for Chua, which is actually much better than that of Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon who received only 1%. The survey only listed these two Chinese leaders, but I believe it is a general reflection of the Chinese support for the MCA and Gerakan leaders.

The external obstacle in their way is the rejuvenated, regenerated, and reformed DAP.

Since the March 2008 general election, there has been a taxonomic group of very educated, progressive, professional and youthful politicians in the DAP, led by the relatively young but veteran political maverick Lim Guan Eng. The highly intellectual and articulate young elected representatives of the DAP are making waves in Parliament and at the various state assemblies, as well as in the public arena, where the battle for the hearts and minds of the people is taking place.

The DAP can boast of an army of very bright, well-educated, well-trained, and morally upright young politicians to spearhead the thrust for the transformation of the nation into a new and better Malaysia. Among the young leaders are the likes of Teresa Kok, Chow Koon Yeow, Anthony Loke, Fong Po Kuan, Lim Lip Eng, Teo Nie Ching, Tony Pua, Jenice Lee, Gobind Singh, Boo Cheng Hua, Hannah Yeoh, Violent Yong, Liew Chin Tong, Jeff Ooi, Thomas Su, and many more.

Can the MCA beat off such an impressive formidable challenge from its diehard political opponent DAP?

To regain the trust and confidence of the Chinese community and to remain relevant, the MCA must undergo a total revamp of its leadership, getting rid of those who had overstayed their usefulness, and those who intelligence are found wanting. The practice of cronyism and nepotism must be eliminated.

Otherwise, what Chua claims about regaining the confidence and support of the Chinese community is merely an illusion – an impossible dream.

I rest my case.

[Note: Thomas Lee has been a newspaper editor and socio-economic and political analyst for over 35 years. He is currently a media consultant.]

  1. #1 by boh-liao on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 10:28 am

    As always, he has impossible WET dream lah n none of d chicks in there is his obedient mrs
    Mayb got some cute chicks fr DAP n dat is truly impossible

  2. #2 by boh-liao on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 10:38 am

    1 Q: Is d popular Angry Birds game halal aah? Got pig what
    Perak mufti got or not got play dis game 1

  3. #3 by k1980 on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 10:39 am

    CSL’s favourite chick— Angela Yum

    CSL’s favourite song— Chin Tien Poo Hoi Jiaaaa…

    CSL’s favourite lie— Penang is bankrupt

    CSL’s favourite room— Muar Hotel

    CSL’s favourite movie — Last Tango in Muar

    CSL’s favourite motto— A chick in bed is worth 2 in the bush

    CSL’s favourite tune— I wanna hold your hand, normala

    CSL’s favourite washerwoman– his wife

  4. #4 by Bigjoe on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 10:40 am

    I put it to Mr. Thomas Lee, CSL is not dreaming an impossible dream – check his networth and where he is keeping/spending his money. I bet any amount it reflects the pessimism of the Chinese community.

    MR. Lee is correct that the MCA leaders are the bottom of the barrel and hence cling to their existence for dear life. In a system where Chinese representative in BN is meritocratic – CSL would not be anywhere inside MCA offices, most of the MCA leaders would not qualify to be shoe polisher outside MCA HQ. What else is he going to do? Actually risk striking out on his own and make something on his own?

    Its got nothing with what CSL is dreaming. The fact in his imagination and intellect is limited to discuss that issue.

    The fact CSL referring to MCA past and track record, which is dubious AND also much of it won before Tan Siew Sin’s exit which has got nothing to do with the today’s MCA.

    What CSL statements and argument proof is he and MCA don’t have a plan. They may know the issues but many they don’t but more importantly they don’t have a clue what to do about them. They are prodigal inheritor’s that is sucking the life out of the remaining assets of MCA because their life would be meaningless otherwise. They have become what UMNO was already after Mahathir came into power.

    The Chinese have a high percentage tertiary education and near full literacy rate with nearly 100% internet penetration. They get it they compete with global forces not with the Malays. They want to compete, they want to join the globalised world. They in fact think they must or perish. That is the issue and their concern is that UMNO/BN is holding them back, cutting them off at the legs especially those that need it most. The world the Chinese move is ever faster, you think they have any patient with those that hold them back? They just roll over them – including MCA.

  5. #5 by hallo on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 10:54 am

    Before independent

    MCA stand for Malaysian Chinese Association

    after independent

    MCA stand for Malay Cooperation Agency

    a corruption agency work for UMNO only


    YES, Master what is your command today….


    Go to cheat the chinese vote so we can continue corrupt




    Good dogs

  6. #6 by limkamput on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 11:01 am

    Hmmm, sound interesting, but I am attracted to the last few paragraphs of your posting. You said, “The DAP can boast of an army of very bright, well-educated, well-trained, and morally upright young politicians to spearhead the thrust for the transformation of the nation into a new and better Malaysia. To regain the trust and confidence of the Chinese community and to remain relevant, the MCA must undergo a total revamp of its leadership, getting rid of those who had overstayed their usefulness, and those who intelligence are found wanting.“

    I think you missed the most important point. Leadership and intelligence are important no doubt. But the centrality of any political struggle is right policies, equal citizenship and dignity and honour of every citizen in this country. Strong leadership can lead all of us to oblivion as what Hitler did. Intelligence and brightness can subjugate and indoctrinate the citizens to perpetual division, submission and ignorance. To be fair, you did mention morally upright politicians, which to me is easy to articulate but difficult to get. Although most of us would prefer that morality come from the goodness of individuals, but in politics it is best that the system is in place either in the party or the government to compel morality and individuals not to deviate.

    What is the secret of BN’s (actually UMNO’s) success in the past 50 years? It is that simple; they used their leadership, intelligence and money power to keep the Malays largely ignorant and dependent and the Chinese divided right in the middle.

  7. #7 by limkamput on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 11:03 am

    K1980, get your facts right, it is Batu Pahat, not Muar.

  8. #8 by ktteokt on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 12:36 pm

    I have said this MANY TIMES and I am saying it again! WHY MUST MCA FIGHT FOR THIS AND FIGHT FOR THAT! Can’t it leave the fighting to the OPPOSITION? It is part of the Barisan Nasional, the ruling party, and it still NEEDS TO FIGHT FOR THIS AND FIGHT FOR THAT? Then, CSL is just silently admitting that MCA is THE OPPOSITION PARTY WITHIN THE RULING COALITION!!!!!!

  9. #9 by tak tahan on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 1:26 pm

    //In an interview with Malaysiakini on Wednesday 8 June 2011, Chua claims that the Chinese want some representatives in the government to articulate their frustrations, and also want a strong opposition to keep a check on the government, but “sometimes, when they do this balancing act, they go haywire.”//

    It’s entirely MCA misrepresentation of chinese after its miserable long decades that generally lead to chinese community to reject BN’s concubine,MCA.It’s MCA’ political duty to uplift chinese social and education welfare but it has failed time and again to prove its viability.So CSL,you better just concentrate on Angela Yum-NGANG as hard as you still can-and shut uP on voicing behalf of chinese perception!

  10. #10 by donng55 on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 1:27 pm

    We are not barren of appreciation of what MCA did for the Chinese community and the country as a whole before, during, and immediately after Merdeka.

    But that was the nascent MCA more than two score years ago.

    The MCA of today, since Ling Liong Sik’s day to be exact, is no longer the party we knew, respected, and loved.

    We saw how its leaders for their own selfsih reasons pushed it down a very slippery slope leading to its current state of degringolade.

    The threshold question is: Why is it that, we, from a community of MCA “enablers” who flocked to its standard every time when the party was in distress, have now transmogrified into a community of MCA bashers?

    The answer is simple: MCA’s biblical betrayal to the Chinese community of decades of ineffectiveness and self-serving.

    As well, it has been growing upon the party, debacle after debacle and intestine war after intestine war, so much so that the Chinese feel that the community is as much deceived by MCA as its cause is injured by it.

    MCA has rubbed into us that it has become a big sad joke, a cockshy that cannot by any reasonable measure be thought of as an asset to the community.

    We’ve long given up hope of conquering MCA’s Shibboleth and rekindling our feelings of kinship with the grieving pachyderm.

    It’s a party that deserves not affection but acerbic animadversion from the community which it unashamedly purports to represent.

    It’s a party which we see no chance for a reprise, and best to be left in repose and rot.

    For decades, sinecures, lagniappes and cushy perchs are to be had for their asking. But instead of leavening compassion with responsibility in serving the rakyat as requital for their good fortune, they make a virtue of necessity, wax fat and kick.

    It is toujours perdrix, too much of a good thing, that is the real problem with MCA caciques.

    There’s just so much too much of thymos, effrontery, perfidy and moral mischief, especially amongst party leaders.

    We feel that the culture of MCA has become the perfect Petri dish for memes, infectious behaviors such as corruption and arrogance.

    Our reprehension of MCA is not a reprehension of today, or of last week, or even of last year, or of the year before. Our disappointment in them is too full for speech.

    In Shakespeare’s King Lear, Edmund speaks of “the excellent foppery of our own behaviour, we make guilty of our disasters the sun, the moon, and the stars.” The same can be said of the excellent foppery of MCA politicos — when they are thrown out on their caboose by the very community their claim to represent, they make guilty of their disasters not the surfeit of their own behaviour, but everything else under the sun.

    What a shame!

  11. #11 by monsterball on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 3:07 pm

    k1980….nice and smart original comment with lots of brain waves…..your…12th June 10.39pm post.
    Nevermind small mistake.
    Muar is where he protected Nainwee “Negarakuku”
    Batu Pahat is where he performed his sex show.
    The mixed up is understandable.
    One love to find any teeny weeny mistakes and prove he is smarter than you.

  12. #12 by limkamput on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 3:53 pm

    i think the itch in this resident ahpek blogger is getting unbearable. He needs some good rubbing.

  13. #13 by ENDANGERED HORNBILL on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 4:44 pm

    Chua Soi Lek, how can you perform when you continue to be the butt of all manner of silly jokes….e.g. your bedroom performance etc.

    For all your good intentions (or, more likely – vested interests), l think all your utterances are being treated as hot air and brushed aside like the rantings of an immoral man who does not deserve an audience. See.

    So I would suggest you pack up and go. Give your son a chance to step out of your shadow. maybe, he can stll redeem himself without all your dirty baggage.

    Frankly and honestly – frankly, because Malaysian Chinese ought to speak out openly and CSL: u need to hear this from us and honestly, because u deserve the unvarnished, unflattering truth – with you at the helm of MCA, MCA and U are sliding down some saucy hole. And you know what mess that hole is. You are just so much of a liability. Why don’t for s”””t’s sake, quit.

  14. #14 by baochingtian on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 5:59 pm

    “In an interview with Malaysiakini on Wednesday 8 June 2011, Chua claims that the Chinese want some representatives in the government to articulate their frustrations, and also want a strong opposition to keep a check on the government, but “sometimes, when they do this balancing act, they go haywire.”” – nice try, Mr Chua!

  15. #15 by Mike Tee on Sunday, 12 June 2011 - 6:41 pm

    Who would vote for his racist MCA in this multiracial society !!! Chua fight for no one except his own pocket and ego, the more fights for Chinese the worse Chinese has become, a TOTAL LOST OUT in the society in the past. Does Chua know what has been gone throught for the majority of Chinese discarded by the BN goverment ? Cannot get business licences, cannot get permit for Temple/secondary Chinese school, cannot get scholarships when passed exams with flying colours, top talents cannot get the top jobs in goverment departments & civil services. Are those the results of MCA fighting for Chinese in the past ???
    Why Chinese primary school students consisting 21% in total Malaysia primary student numbers received only 2% of subsidies ????? Why has 60% of passing grade only allowed 10% to entered local Goverment Uni ???
    Chua you are a desperate man, STOP BARKING FOR ONCE, even your Perkasa boss said the same to you not so long ago!

  16. #16 by monsterball on Monday, 13 June 2011 - 5:38 am

    The unbeaerabale braggart..never change..always correct others with no manners….like a school teacher…as if he is the smartest of the lotOneis so creative..yet he finds a mistake and rub in…with no manners or respect at all.
    Chua Soi Lek is the same.
    Guess who is the other this blog.
    You want to boast…with your accademic blockhead and run down creative original comments?

  17. #17 by Loh on Monday, 13 June 2011 - 2:20 pm

    ///In an interview with Malaysiakini on Wednesday 8 June 2011, Chua claims that the Chinese want some representatives in the government to articulate their frustrations, and also want a strong opposition to keep a check on the government, but “sometimes, when they do this balancing act, they go haywire.”///

    The Chinese expect MCA leaders to be true partner of the coalition government to ensure that government policies are not biased against any race, and Chinese in particular. MCA leader should be able to propose policies for the benefit of all races, and not to stay in the government to try minimizing harm against Chinese. Since MCA has not been able to function as a true partner, Chinese now vote for non-BN parties hoping that they capture Putrajaya. In fact Chinese want MCA dissolved so that UMNO does not have an excuse to balance against MCA.

    Chua Soi Lek has now laid the groundwork for MCA to stay out of BN government, if MCA do not perform better than 308. Thus Najib and UMNO is now given notice that Chinese will decide whether racist party should remain after GE 13. Chinese voters now have the opportunity to remove MCA as a political party by voting for Pakatan Rakyat. When MCA is totally wiped out, and hopefully BN will be defeated at the federal level, UMNO will have the next five years to transform into a non-racist party. A two-party non-race-based political system should then emerge. It would stop rampant corruption when voters are not polarized by race.

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