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Bung Mohtar just don’t get it – on the occasion of 50th Merdeka anniversary, he and Mohd Said have become the worst examples of “Ugly Malaysians” bringing shame and dishonour to Parliament, nation and women in Malaysia, ASEAN and world


Media Statement (2)     
by Lim Kit Siang  


(Parliament, Friday) : The Barisan Nasional (BN) Member of Parliament for Kinabatangan Datuk Bung Mokhtar Radin is trying to jump out of the burning quagmire which he found himself in together with the BN MP for Jasin, Datuk  Mohd Said Yusof as a result of their unrepentant and recalcitrant sexism in Parliament more than a fortnight ago. 

He thinks that he has found a very smart exit strategy for his predicament by challenging me to contest against him in his Kinabatangan constituency in the next general election and even offering 1,000 votes free – which was given front-page treatment in Sabah newspapers yesterday. 

He cannot be more wrong or naïve to think that he could distract or deflect national and international attention from his unrepentant and unpunished male chauvinism in Parliament on May 9, 2007. 

Clearly, Bung Mohtar just don’t get it – that  there is no way he could extricate himself from the quagmire and the furore he and Mohd Said had created would go away by just turning it into a cheap farce, such as challenging me to contest against him in Kinabatangan. 

The issue at stake has nothing to do about him and me, and that is why my answer is a definitive negative when a reporter asked whether I would counter-challenge Bung Mokhtar to contest against me in Ipoh Timur parliamentary constituency. 

The question is solely about Bung Mohktar himself  Bung Mohtar’s greatest enemy is not any third party but his own self and he must wrestle with his own soul and devil as well as his own sense of decency, as he and Mohd Said have become the worst examples of “Ugly Malaysians” on the occasion of the 50th Merdeka anniversary, bringing shame and dishonour to Parliament, the nation and women in Malaysia, ASEAN and the world. 

This is all because of their foul and gender-offensive mouthings which they have not shown one iota of remorse for over a fortnight – compounded by their bogus apologies in the farce orchestrated with the Women, Family and Community Development Minister, Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil. The net result had been completely unexpected – arousing even greater wrath and outrage among decent men and women, because the fraudulent apologies were so clear and blatant. 

Bung Mokhtar and Mohd Jasin should realize that they have stumbled onto one of the unintended effects of the process of globalization – that women not only in Malaysia but in ASEAN and the world would be taking up the cudgels to protect their dignity and honour which had been  besmirched by the duo’s  boorish and sexist remarks, as sexist attack on the honour of DAP MP for Batu Gajah, Fong Po Kuan was also an attack on the honour of all women MPs in Malaysia, ASEAN and the world! 

This is why ASEAN and global Parliamentarians have stood in solidarity with Po Kuan and denounced the sexism in the Malaysian Parliament as both errant MPs have become even more obnoxious after their fake apologies – to the extent that Bung Mokhtar is so devoid of remorse or shame as to challenge me to contest against him in Kinabatangtan. 

Bung Mohtar and Mohd Said should be forewarned – that unless they are prepared to fully express contrition for their boorish and sexist conduct and accept punishment, such as six-month suspension as MP and six-month community service with women groups with parliamentary allowance during this period donated to women activities, public outrage at their unrepentant  and recalcitrant sexism will continue to snowball, not only in the country but in the regional and international arenas. 

Already there are proposals from MPs from other ASEAN countries that such unacceptable and unrepentant sexism  in Parliament should be exposed and condemned at the ASEAN Inter-Parliamentary Organisation (AIPO) Conference in Kuala Lumpur in September and in forthcoming Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) and Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) international conferences. 

The ball is in the courts of Bung Mokhtar and Mohd Said, whether they want to become two MPs who will in future be equated with the term “Ugly Malaysians”!


* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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