(Speech at the first Public Ceramah/Consultation with DAP MPs, Excos, State Assembly representatives at Chin Woo Hall, Ipoh on Saturday, 12th April 2008)
After the March 8 political tsunami, MCA and Gerakan leaders blamed Umno for their electoral debacle, in particular the insensitivity shown by Umno leaders like the Umno Youth leader and Education Minister, Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein for his provocative and irresponsible “Malay keris” antics at Umno Youth general assemblies.
However, MCA and Gerakan leaders have not admitted their own weaknesses and failures in not speaking up loud and clear in Cabinet, Parliament and the government to protest against such insensitivity and demanding that Hishammudin publicly apologise for his “Malay keris” antics and that there should be no recurrence of such insensitivity in a plural society by a national leader who holds the important and sensitive post of Education Minister.
It is heartening that after the March 8 “political tsunami”, MCA and Gerakan leaders have realized the damage, not only to the Barisan Nasional but to five decades of nation-building, caused by Hishammuddin’s “Malay keris” antics, but it is not enough to realize one’s mistake if one is not prepared to take the necessary remedial measures.
Hishammuddin should publicly apologise for his “Malay keris” antics and MCA, Gerakan and other Barisan Nasional leaders should demand in unison for such an apology and assurance of no repetition in Cabinet and Parliament.
Unless Hishammuddin is prepared to make a public apology and MCA, Gerakan and other BN leaders in Cabinet and Parliament take a public position demanding that Hishammuddin publicly apologise for his offensive, irresponsible and provocative “Malay keris” antics, it could not be said that Umno, MCA, Gerakan and BN leaders have learnt anything from the March 8 “political tsunami”.
The questions I want to pose tonight is whether Hishammuddin is prepared to publicly apologise for his irresponsible and provocative “Malay keris” antics and whether MCA, Gerakan and other BN leaders prepared to demand in unison for such an apology and assurance of no repetition in Cabinet and Parliament as proof that they have taken seriously the voice of Malaysian voters in the March 8 “political tsunami”.