With eye on GE15, Guan Eng tells Pakatan to win critics with compassion instead of more hate

Jerry Choong
Lim warned against the 'dangerous, divisive and destructive' campaign driven by the Opposition Umno and PAS against non-Malays and non-Muslims in their bid to take power. — Picture by Hari Anggara

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 15 — DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng called on his Pakatan Harapan (PH) partners to stop quarrelling and work on delivering the remaining Election 2018 promises by next year to be re-elected.

In his speech at the Penang DAP convention in George Town earlier today, Lim reminded delegates that their fight for a “better Malaysia” through reform and to protect racial and religious harmony must continue even though the party is now in the ruling coalition.

“Having lost our freedom, our parliamentary status, or even our own family’s economic welfare, whilst in opposition to pursue these ideas and ideals that benefit Malaysia, DAP leaders will never forget our members’ sacrifices to put in place what we fought for in opposition — a Malaysia belonging to all citizens regardless of race, religion, geography or demography,” he said.

A copy of his address was made available to the press.

Lim pointed to the “dangerous, divisive and destructive” campaign driven by the Opposition Umno and PAS against non-Malays and non-Muslims in their bid to take power.

Among the examples he gave were the increasing opposition to vernacular schools and boycott of non-Muslim products and businesses.

“These also include barring non-Muslims from becoming Cabinet ministers, dispossessing Indians and Chinese the right to vote, showing outright contempt for the religious practices of non-Muslims, and spread vicious lies against non-Muslims that is justifiable just because they are non-Muslims.

“DAP and Pakatan are being hated because we practiced moderation seeking to represent all Malaysians, not one community or one religion,” he highlighted.

The finance minister added that the best way to counter the hate and threats from its political opponents is through compassion and good governance, citing Kelantan as an example.

“Despite PAS’ vilification of DAP leaders, when the Kelantan state government sought financial aid from the federal government twice to help pay the salaries of the civil servants, I immediately approved a loan amounting to RM192 million so that civil servants in Kelantan will continue to collect their salary.

“We counter our political opponents not by being more racist or more extremist. We will not lie shamelessly like our opponents We need to counter these racists and religious extremists with performance and results especially in delivering more business opportunities, more jobs, better education and an adequate health care," Lim said.

He said fulfilling election promises will help the PH coalition convince voters to elect it for another term in the 15th general election due by 2023.

Among further examples of electoral promises he listed were reducing the price of petrol from RM2.20 to RM2.08 per litre, providing My100 monthly travel passes for all rail and bus services under RapidKL and RM50 Pas Mutiara in Penang bus and ferry services, thereby benefiting over 120,000 public transportation users.

“We must also make Malaysians proud of their country which is democratic and just, clean and free from corruption. The time has come for party leaders to be brave to stand up and be counted to explain government policies and defend the party.

“DAP leaders will need to listen more and work harder but we would also need to explain the steps taken to fulfill these promises. After all the PH government faces many challenges,” Lim said.

Lim also reminded fellow PH leaders that time is ticking for the nascent coalition as Malaysians are waiting on the 40 per cent of unfulfilled promises and less on the outcome of the transfer of prime ministership from Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

“Political parties in Pakatan should stop their internal infighting for power, or cause political instability by continuing to question the transition of power between Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim,” Lim said.


 

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