After Semenyih loss, Kit Siang urges Pakatan to show commitment to New Malaysia

Lim says the challenge for PH after its defeat in the Semenyih by-election is to find a formula to continue inspiring hope and support among Malaysians. — Picture by Firdaus Latif
Lim says the challenge for PH after its defeat in the Semenyih by-election is to find a formula to continue inspiring hope and support among Malaysians. — Picture by Firdaus Latif

KUALA LUMPUR, March 5 ― The Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition has to show its commitment to building a New Malaysia in the journey which would take more than 100 days or a few years, DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang said today.

Lim, who is also Iskandar Puteri MP, said the challenge for PH after its defeat in the Semenyih by-election, is to find a formula to continue inspiring hope and support among Malaysians, instead of being seen as trying to “out-Umno” or “out-PAS”.

Lim noted that the 14th general elections gave Malaysians a previously unimaginable chance to reset nation-building policies in the country.

He said that although a New Malaysia cannot be built or completed in 100 days or in a few years, Malaysians must be convinced that PH is committed to the New Malaysia objective and programme.

“The journey towards a New Malaysia must strike deep roots in terms of structural and institutional reforms in 2019 to transform Malaysia from a global kleptocracy into a leading nation of integrity; restore the rule of law; entrench democracy; reform the educational system to make Malaysia a top world-class nation; unite Malaysians of diverse races, religions and cultures and leverage on the assets of the diverse races, religions, cultures and civilisations which meet in confluence in Malaysia to build a new global civilisation,” he said in a statement today.

Lim today stressed that nation building must not be a zero sum game but a win-win formula.

“We must fight for the rights of the Malays but not at the expense of the non-Malays. We must fight for the rights of the Chinese in Malaysia, but not to the detriment of the non-Chinese. We must fight for the rights of the Indians in Malaysia without being a threat to the non-Indians in Malaysia. Similarly for the Kadazans, Ibans and Orang Asli communities in Malaysia,” he explained.

Lim did not explain what he meant by “out-Umno” or “out-PAS”, but political analysts have pointed to Malay-based parties Umno and PAS as tapping on sentiments of the Malay-Muslim community to bolster support.