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Media Statement by Parliamentary Opposition Leader and DAP MP for Ipoh Timur Lim Kit Siang in Sungai Siput market, the second stop of the 2-day 12-place “whistle-stop” campaign in Perak to highlight the DAP national general election theme of “Good Cops, Safe Malaysia” on Saturday, 12th January 2008 at 11 am:

Will Samy Vellu back out of contest in Sungai Siput in next general election as he has become the lightning rod of the long-suppressed anger and frustrations of the Malaysian Indians over their long-standing marginalization as to become the new underclass in the country?

Will the MIC President Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu contest again in the Sungai Siput parliamentary seat in the next general election which is around the corner?

The question seems to be a no-brainer as the answer appears to be indisputable “yes”.

The truth may not be that simple however.

Many would have no doubt that Samy Vellu would be returning to contest the parliamentary seat of Sungai Siput for the ninth time in the next general election, which he won for the first time in 1974.

There is however no doubt that Samy Vellu has become the lightning road of the long-suppressed anger and frustration of the Malaysian Indians over their long-standing political, economic, educational, social, cultural and religious marginalization in the country – as evidenced by the seething ferment demanding change among Malaysian Indians.

Samy Vellu is now the very personification to the Malaysian Indian community of everything that is wrong and unfair about Barisan Nasional policies in the past three decades which have reduced them into the new underclass in Malaysia.

Samy Vellu had compounded this offence in openly going against the struggle of the Malaysian Indians for a just and equal place under the Malaysian sun when he openly denied in India last week that Malaysian Indians are victims of long-standing marginalization.

This is not only untrue – but Samy Vellu knew that he was not speaking the truth!

In June 2004, I had handed Samy Vellu an official letter proposing the establishment of a Parliamentary Select Committee on the Marginalisation of the Malaysian Indians, asking him to take the issue to the Cabinet for approval and suggesting that he be the Chairman of the Parliamentary Select Committee.

At the time, Samy Vellu told me that it was a good proposal and that he would take it up to the Cabinet. I have not heard from him on the issue in the past three years and I do not know whether he had tabled the proposal in Cabinet and it got shot down or whether he never raised it in Cabinet at all.

What is most significant was that when I handed the letter and proposal to him – we were attending a meeting of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Selection - he raised no objection whatsoever and even commended the proposal as a good one.

This could only mean that in June 2004, Samy Vellu admitted that the Malaysian Indians faced the problem of marginalization – which he is now going all over the world to deny.

This is sheer hypocrisy and explains why he has become the symbol of the rotten and opportunistic Malaysian Indian politics which is the object of scorn in the political awakening of the Malaysian Indians after the watershed Hindraf rally in Kuala Lumpur on Nov. 25 last year.

If Samy Vellu re-contests in Sungai Siput in the next general election expected within 65 days, again leading the MIC election campaign, MIC parliamentary and state assembly candidates throughout the country will face massive rejection by the Malaysian Indian voters.

Are MIC leaders trying to find a way to convey and convince Samy Vellu that the best service he can do to the MIC after being the MIC President and sole Malaysian Indian Minister for close to three decades is for him to fully absorb the anger and frustration of the Malaysian Indians at the MIC failure to check the marginalization of the Malaysian Indians by accepting full personal responsibility and not contesting in the next general election – thus saving the MIC slate of parliamentary and state assembly candidates from the full wrath of the Indian community in the polls?

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


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