Say No to the Spectre of May 13

If you endorse the statement below, please post this at your front page of the blog until Chew Mei Fun retracts her statement and apologize. [Click here for the Malay and Chinese versions of the Joint Statement.]

JOINT PRESS STATEMENT BY CONCERNED MALAYSIANS ON 22 JANUARY 2008:

Say No to the Spectre of May 13

– Chew Mei Fun MP must retract her fear-mongering statement and apologize

We, the undersigned civil society groups and concerned citizens of diverse ethnic, religious and cultural backgrounds, stress that all Malaysians have the right to choose their representatives and the government in a free, fair and clean election. No individual politician or political party should resort to threats or intimidation to influence the voter’s decision.

We lament that Datin Paduka Chew Mei Fun, MCA MP for Petaling Jaya Utara, as reported in the China Press on January 21 (Monday), has conveyed this fear-mongering message to the public: “If there is insufficient Chinese representation in the Barisan Nasional, it is not a good thing, the Chinese community cannot afford another May 13 incident.

The May 13 ethnic riot in 1969 was a dark chapter in Malaysia’s political history where political violence and manipulation overshadowed the democratic process as well as the voice of the people. Invoking the bitter memories of this tragic incident for political gain is a huge insult to those who died, the surviving victims and their families. This veiled threat to voters not to support the opposition parties is shameless and unbecoming of a responsible political leader.

If Chew is aware of certain quarters planning to use violence in response to a certain electoral outcome, she who has been speaking tirelessly on public safety should lodge a police report immediately and assist in the police investigation.

If she is merely speculating, we are truly disappointed that she has stooped so low in fishing for support. Politicians should not behave like gangsters. They should not use the threat of violence to solicit vote, as gangsters do to extort money.

By making this statement, Chew has in fact violated Section 9 (1) of the Election Offences Act 1954:

Undue influence

9. (1) Every person who, before, during or after an election, directly or indirectly, by himself or by any other person on his behalf, makes use of or threatens to make use of any force, violence, or restraint, or inflicts or threatens to inflict, by himself or by any other person, any temporal or spiritual injury, damage, harm, or loss upon or against any person in order to induce or compel such person to vote or refrain from voting, or on account of such person having voted or refrained from voting, at any election, or who by abduction, duress, or any fraudulent device or contrivance impedes or prevents the free exercise of the franchise of any elector or voter, or thereby compels, induces, or prevails upon any elector or voter either to give or refrain from giving his vote at any election, or who directly or indirectly interferes or attempts to interfere with the free exercise by any person of any electoral right shall be guilty of the offence of undue influence.

While waiting for the Election Commission to investigate and lodge a police report, we call upon Chew to do the honorable thing. She should retract her statement and apologize unreservedly for her fear-mongering act. She must condemn unreservedly the use of political violence in Malaysia.

Voters must be assured of their right to vote for any candidate or party of their choice in an environment that is free from fear and intimidation.

We also call upon the Prime Minister Dato’ Seri Abdullah Badawi to disassociate his administration and party from Chew’s fear-mongering statement and condemn unreservedly the use of threats and intimidation on voters.

We must not let Malaysia become a failed state where political violence rules, like Pakistan. We must not allow any party to ‘play with fire’. We categorically reject anyone who uses the spectre of May 13 as a bogeyman to threaten Malaysians.

All individuals or civil society organisations in support of democracy may endorse this statement by displaying a copy of this statement on their premises, vehicles or the front page of their blogs or websites, until Chew retract the statement and apologizes.

Civil Society Organisations:

  1. Coalition For Clean and Fair Elections (BERSIH)
  2. Group of Concerned Citizens (GCC)
  3. Writers Alliance for Media Independence (WAMI)
  4. Malaysian Voters Union (MALVU)
  5. Save Ourselves (SOS Penang)

For group endorsement, please email Medaline Chang at medster@gmail.com.

5 responses to “Say No to the Spectre of May 13

  1. i’m still furious that she did the “may13” threat.
    it’s a stupid, stupid thing to say
    i was going to follow your call to leave the post on top until she apologises, but that day may not come.
    so i’ve decided to leave it there until she apologises OR is no longer my MP.
    thanks for highlighting it to us.

  2. You got my endorsement

  3. I don’t own a BMW or Mercedes, neither do I have a mansion or bungalow. Shares and equity I have none so May 13 is the least I have to worry about. If I really happens that can only means that the warlords have lost control over the gurkhas because they have the most to lose. Just check how many descendents of MCA leaders are now PR outside or having their business away from home. Even your Wanita head used to have PR in Australia on the flimsy excuse that she need to visit her children studying there. They must be thinking that all Malaysians are nimcompoos. Everthing which are rights has now been classified as priveleges and MCA have to go around begging form the warlords. It is 49 years to late to change all that after what Lim Chong Eu had tried and found himself kicked out instead by politicians with CFM’s mentality.

    The seed of UMNO’s hegemony was planted much earlier. Remember Dato’ Onn and his Independence of Malaya Party? If the Chinese voters have supported them over the UMNO-MCA in the 1952 Kuala Lumpur municipal council elections, would UMNO extremists be around today to tell Malaysians “balik China” or “Balik India” from time to time?

    A further note (not to kowtim), for all Chinese who like to blame Malays for UMNO’s excesses, they should remember it’s the Chinese – through MCA and its likes – that have kept UMNO alive in 1952 and 1999. In 2004, Hishamuddin Hussien Onn won 88% of popular votes in a constituency where 51% were non-Malays. So, don’t blame the Malays for his keris.

  4. People are NOT the boss. As Chairman Mao says it correctly ” Power comes from the barrel of the gun” . Number does not count.

  5. Just discovered a complete list of all marked down products at Amazon, sorted by category
    and % off, ranging from 50% off to 90% off (thanks Sonja for the effort).

    Actually I never thought Amazon would have articles with 90% off, but only in the category
    Electronics there are more than 3000 of them – look for yourself, the list is on
    http://bargains-hunter.blogspot.com/2008/02/looking-for-marked-down-prices.html
    or on http://digg.com/gadgets/Actually_I_never_thought_Amazon_would_have_articles_with_90
    (which is a blog of a woman who specializes in finding good deals at Amazon, like Britain’s “Jeanie”).

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