After the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s announcement of his re-appointment as Cabinet Minister on Wednesday, MCA President Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai declared that MCA and UMNO share equal roles in the Barisan Nasional (BN) framework, as well as in the government, in accordance with the BN’s traditional system of consensus.
Liow said MCA will not play second fiddle to UMNO in the Cabinet.
This is also the stand of the Gerakan President, Datuk Mah Siew Keong.
Just “as the proof of the pudding is in the eating”, let Liow and Mah prove that MCA and Gerakan will be UMNO’s equal in government by restoring the original BN consensus and getting their first Cabinet meeting to disown the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Jamil Khir Baharom’s parliamentary statement that “Malaysia is not a secular state”.
So far, Liow and Mah have claimed that Jamil Khir parliamentary statement that Malaysia is not a secular state is merely Jamil’s “personal view”.
Both Liow and Mah should know that there is no such thing as a “personal view” when a Minister speaks in Parliament, whether in speeches or in replies to parliamentary questions, as whatever the Minister speaks in Parliament is in an official capacity on behalf of the BN Cabinet which binds all Ministers under the doctrine of collective Ministerial responsibility.
Or is Liow and Mah suggesting that Datuk Wee Ka Siong, as Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, can stand up in Parliament to declare that Malaysia is a secular state with Islam as the official religion – fully contradicting not only Jamil Khir’s parliamentary statement but the ruling of the Parliament Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia?
And will Wee do so when Parliament reconvenes on Oct. 7?
Liow and Mah have claimed that MCA and Gerakan had never agreed in the Barisan Nasional to deviate from the decades-old consensus, assurance and commitment in the Malaysian Constitution and declared by the founding fathers of the nation, including the first three Prime Ministers, Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein, the other Alliance founding leaders like Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Tun Tan Siew Sin, Tun VT Sambantan as well as the founding Sarawak and Sabah leaders who were signatories to the 1963 Malaysia Agreement that Malaysia is a secular state with Islam as the official religion of the Federation.
The restoration of the Barisan Nasional consensus that Malaysia is a secular state with Islam as the official religion of the federation, which is clearly defined in the Federal Constitution “drafted to safeguard the rights of not only one race and religion, but of all”, must be the first task of the first Cabinet meeting attended by both Liow and Mah.
Will Liow and Mah be able to restore this BN consensus, and get the Cabinet to repudiate Jamil Khir’s parliamentary statement that Malaysia is not a secular state, when they attended their first Cabinet meeting after they have been sworn in as Ministers?