The signs are all there and we see things that we could not have imagined even a year ago, says P Pamakrishnan.
It is my pleasure to be here with all of you this evening because I’m among friends who share the same dream and cherish the same hope. And that is to get rid of the Barisan Nasional.
This is our sole reason to be here and we must do all that is necessary to fulfil this dream.
If there ever was an occasion in our entire history, it is now. The time has finally come to really bury a corrupt regime that has been plundering and pillaging our wealth and resources; that has been corrupting our electoral system; that has been dividing us by race and religion; that has mutilated our Constitution to perpetuate their power and position.
Friends, we have taken all that we can for an amazing and agonising 56 years. Do we want another five years of this rotten government? Can we tolerate them even for another day?
The signs are there
Yes, my friends, it is time for change. The signs are all there. We see things that we could not have imagined even a year ago.
Last night, at a cerama in Gelang Patah, in Johor, the predominantly Chinese crowd was holding up Pas flags along with those bearing the DAP’s rocket logo. Likewise, the Malays were holding up the DAP flags bearing the rocket. And two nights ago, at a ceramah at the Esplanade in Penang we witnessed many Chinese happily carrying Pas flags and coming for the ceramah.
This is a sight to behold for all of us but it has become a nightmare for the BN!
The BN and their mainstream media carry full page advertisements stating that a vote for the DAP is a vote for Pas. This silly argument will no longer carry any weight; it will no longer fool the voters.
Battle between the past and the future
Kit Siang addressed this false propaganda very effectively in Gelang Patah last night.
He stated, “They say a vote for DAP is a vote for Pas. Is that true? Yes it is. That is because a vote for DAP is a vote for Pas, PKR and Pakatan Rakyat.”
And he hit the nail on the head when he declared, “I say here tonight. This is the battle between the past and the future.”
Yes, my friends that’s what it is: The battle between the rotten past and the bright future.
Let me quote another report:
But the crowd’s enthusiasm last night was not restricted to Kit Siang.
When Pas vice president Salahuddin Ayub, who is contesting both the nearby Pulai federal seat and Nusajaya state seat, addressed them earlier, the crowd cheered and waved Pas and DAP flags.
“We are making history tonight,” he said.
“The Chinese are wearing Pas shirts and holding Pas flags. Pas members too are wearing DAP shirts.
“If the Chinese can wear Pas shirts this means that Umno can fall.”
And friends, Umno must fall. It is Umno that is responsible for the mess we are in. It is Umno that decides on unfair and unjust policies, and the unequal partners in the coalition merely endorse them.
The diabolical rules and regulations that have been enacted were done with the tacit support of MCA, MIC, Gerakan and the rest of the crowd in the BN.
Court upholds an injustice
The ridiculous rule 9A of the Elections Act 1958 stipulates that when once the electoral rolls have been gazetted, it cannot be challenged in court; the phantom voters therein cannot be removed.
There are hundreds of thousands of fraudulent voters on the rolls, including names of those who hadn’t registered. Anyone can assume their identities and vote for the BN. You can’t do anything about it. You can’t turn to the courts for justice. In two recent cases, the courts just dismissed the cases because of this unjust rule.
But what was so disappointing was the fact that the court failed to state its views regarding this rule. Surely it could have said that the rule is undemocratic; it is unconstitutional; it makes a mockery of the principle “one man one vote”. But it did not. It upheld an injustice and legitimised what was outrageously wrong, unjust and unfair.
This undemocratic law was passed by the BN, which has no respect for the rule of law and the democratic process.
Move to sabotage DAP
Just two days before the nomination day, the Registrar of Societies – a civil servant who is supposed to be independent and neutral – suddenly and arbitrarily outlawed the entire Central Executive Committee of the DAP in a deliberate move to sabotage the DAP in the election.
It meant that the DAP candidates could not have used the rocket as their party symbol because the Secretary General could not issue letters of authorisation to them. In this way, the BN thought, they could catch the DAP off guard and force all DAP candidates to stand as independents using silly symbols like keys, cow, goat etc.
But the ROS and the BN misjudged the mood of the electorate. They were in no mood to tolerate this underhand tactic at the eleventh hour. The anger and the backlash were so vehement and so pronounced it got the BN really worried. And what made it worse for the BN was the decision that the DAP was prepared to stand under the Pas logo. It meant that it was no longer haram to be associated with Pas. It legitimised their bond in the coalition. Now the rocket can go to the moon!
Late on Friday night, at around 10.00pm, on the eve of nomination day, the ROS hand-delivered a letter addressed to “Saudara Lim Guan Eng Setiausaha Agung Parti Tindakan Demokratik (DAP)” stating that there was no objection to the DAP using its symbol in the 13th General Election. The ROS acted like a thief delivering the letter under the cover of darkness.
Bribery: Part and parcel of political culture
Though one of the principles of the Rukun Negara emphasises “good behaviour and morality” in our daily conduct, the BN does not observe this. Bribery is part and parcel of its political culture.
Without a tinge of conscience, it can bribe the entire country. See how money is being splashed and given away on a daily basis. Notice how caring and concerned they have suddenly become just before the election! This is hypocrisy of the highest order.
Let’s not forget that if there was no strong Opposition, they wouldn’t care two hoots for your suffering. They had 56 years to right the many wrongs, to uplift the poor, to shelter the homeless, to provide basic decent wages to comfort the suffering families of the working class. They did not do all these because there was no threat and real challenge to their power.
Now that there is this fear that they may have to vacate Putrajaya, they are frantically trying to buy our votes. This is the only reason why they are seen as being generous and caring.
But let us not be fooled. Let’s accept their gifts but on 5 May let us make it clear that we are not for sale! We are only for change!
Don’t you want to know?
My friends, don’t you want to know who ordered the murder of Altantuya? Then go for change.
Don’t you want to know who was caught with the pants down in Port Dickson? Then go for change.
Don’t you want to know how thousands of acres of land were transferred to cronies at ridiculously low prices? Then go for change.
Don’t you want to know how the carpet-man Deepak bribed Najib and Rosmah by giving them millions of ringgit? Then go for change!
Don’t you want to know how Mahathir robbed us of our electoral victories through his scandalous IC project in Sabah? Then go for change.
Don’t you want to know how Petronas money is used and abused and squandered without being accountable? Then go for change!
Don’t you want to know how Mahathir’s son got a huge contract from Petronas? Then go for change!
Don’t you want to know how Umnoputras own expensive mansions and other properties in London and elsewhere? Then go for change!
Friends, we can make change happen! Let us speak to our friends and family members to come out in full force to vote on polling day. Every vote counts. And your role is very crucial.
Change is in your hands, my friends.
The above speech was delivered by P Ramakrishnan at a forum held at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Pulau Tikus, Penang on 21 April 2013