On 31 March I received a whatsapp message headlined “Breaking News – MCA Leaves Barisan Nasional”.
According to the sensational introduction: “In the biggest political development in Malaysia since the exclusion of PAS from Pekatan, the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA), a component of the coalition Barisan Nasional (National Front) announced its withdrawal from the Barisan.”
Further on, the article stated that the MCA President had said that he was resigning from his post with immediate effect and that the Central Committee had instructed all members of the MCA “who are holding any Government position to resign forthwith.”
I must confess that I was among what must have been many thousands of Malaysians who were initially fooled by the whatsapp message.
I should have immediately realized that it was an April Fool’s day joke. In fact the name of the author of the news report – Neo Tar Pean – which translates to ‘You big s…” should have alerted me too that this was a cheeky scam and not to be taken seriously.
But I must credit whoever wrote that article for a sharp analysis of why the MCA had decided to call it quits from BN.
Neo not only provided a highly credible explanation in tracing the steady decline of the party status as equal partner in the original Alliance party “to a minion”. In a few paragraphs he succinctly summarized the work of other scholars and analysts who have studied the country’s political history and examined the rise of the “Ketuanan Melayu” ideology under UMNO which has relegated the party to second class status.
Although this report was quickly exposed as a fake, there is a part of it which must be giving nightmares to the MCA leaders.
This is the part which reads:
“In recent months, the UMNO support for the PAS Bill placed the MCA in such an embarrassing position of not being able to voice our opposition under the Barisan Protocol of no external dissension. In public, we were flailed by all and sundry for not speaking out vehemently against this divisive bill. Yes, the Prime Minister has, after much internal pressure from us and other Barisan parties, decided not to table the Bill BUT this is too little too late. Our credibility among the non-Bumiputra community has been severely compromised.”
Will the MCA Stand Firm on RUU355 Opposition
I am in full agreement that the MCA’s credibility has been severely compromised as a result of RUU 355. Even though the bill is no longer a BN bill, developments since then in Parliament have shown that the MCA has no place to hide now on the bill.
The Speaker in Parliament – most likely on orders from the Prime Minister and UMNO – allowed the bill to jump the queue again and then deferred the debate on it. This has allowed both PAS and UMNO to come out as “heroes” of the Islamic community. As for the rest of the BN, especially the MCA, they appear to be suckers or foolish political simpletons for allowing themselves to be pulled left, right and center in the PAS/UMNO agenda to further “islamize” the nation.
There is one way out of the sleepless nights for the MCA over RUU355. This is for the MCA to stand on principle; declare that it is fully and irrevocably committed to a secular Malaysia as agreed to in the Constitution, and that it will break away from BN on the basis of this single issue alone.
There’s no need for the MCA to say about how it is committed to equal power sharing, meritocracy, social justice, democratic government, human rights, a fair and just society, etc. However loudly it is doing this for the coming election, few members of the public actually believe this.
However, the MCA still has one last chance at redeeming the party’s reputation.
This is for the MCA to just make a stand on RUU355.
Whether or not, this will scare the “tar pean” out of UMNO and get UMNO back in line with the BN consensus that Malaysia is a secular nation we do not know for now. But it is a stand that is necessary to make, especially for the sake of the Chinese in Malaysia.
Give up on this issue and look for excuses to justify the party’s political cowardice and 360 degree turn on RUU 355, and the party will truly be consigned into the dustbin of history.
Under the Sharia law any woman who committed adultery will be stoned to death.
All Member of Parliament must watch the movie called “Stoning of Soraya “which can easily be found if you just google- Stoning of Soraya, before they can vote for or against the bill.