KUALA LUMPUR — Datuk Seri Najib Razak has denied that MCA had requested for the post of deputy prime minister to be given to the party as claimed by Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
The prime minister said throughout his tenure as the country’s No. 1 leader, never once did the Barisan Nasional (BN) component party asked to be given the number two post and the post of finance minister.
“Recently, it was revealed that DAP asked for the post of DPM and finance minister, when the Malays are angry, he said MCA. Since I become PM, MCA has never ask for the DPM post, This is a lie.
“I deny and I ask MCA to also deny. MCA has three ministerial posts and they are thankful. Don’t do a lot of U-turns,” he said.
Najib said this in his speech at a luncheon in conjunction with the 60th anniversary of the Malaysian Tamil Youth Bell Club at the Grand Hall, Lukut here today.
Also present were MIC President Datuk Seri Dr S. Subramaniam, Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, Dewan Negara Speaker Datuk Seri SA Vigneswaran, MyPPP President Tan Sri M Kayveas, MIC former president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu and Gerakan Vice President Datuk A. Kohilan Pillay.
Previously, Dr Mahathir was quoted to have said DAP wanted the post of deputy prime minister if the Opposition pact wins the coming 14th General Election.
In his blog on Friday, the former prime minister made a U turn by correcting his earlier statement that MCA was the party that asked for the post and not DAP.
Speaking before a 3,000-strong audience, Najib, however, urged the people not to be influenced by the Opposition’s propaganda which frequently made U-turns.
“Don’t listen to the Opposition, our statesman is taking rubbish now. He says want to abolish the GST (Goods and Services Tax) which gives a revenue of RM41 billion.
“Where do I get money to build clinics, hospitals? Imagine health asks, education asks, how do I get? Money does not come floating, it must come from resources,” he said.
Najib said the people needed to understand that the opposition could say whatever they want and often make a U turn if problems arise.
Earlier the prime minister said the people, especially youths in the country must have a sophisticated mind, world class, borderless thinking and knowledgeable to compete in the future.
“But if knowledge is not aligned to morals, values and culture, intellect alone is meaningless. We want both at once.
“We want to be rooted in good value, rooted in our own culture in our history… to strengthen our identity but our mind must internationalise our mind,” he said.
Najib also said even though the Indian community made up only 7.4 per cent of Malaysia’s population, the Indians had made many contributions to national development.
“Based on history, it cannot be denied the Indian community made great contributions and we should recognise the contribution of the Indian community,” he said.
The Malaysian Tamil Youth Bell Club was formed in 1956 to promote the Tamil language, arts and culture and has 24,552 members and 292 branches nationwide.
At the function, Najib presented a cheque, worth RM2.18 million, for the construction of Tamil schools in the state, which was received by Mohamad. – Bernama
PREVIOUSLY, the Malay Mail reported:
‘Nothing wrong’ with asking for DPM post, MCA rep says
KUALA LUMPUR, Jan 21 ― An MCA central committee member defended his party’s past request for a deputy prime minister post, saying it was not an “offence” to convey the Chinese community’s wish for “empowerment”.
Datuk Seri Ti Lian Ker admitted today that his party had sought to install one of its members in that position, after retired prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad exposed the request on his blog yesterday.
“It was only a process to channel the wish of supporters in a healthy democracy,” Ti said in a statement.
He explained that the party which is supposed to represent ethnic Chinese voters had made the request, seeing the post as an “empowerment” to resolve the problems of the non-Malay, non-Muslim community.
However, he did not elaborate on the problems faced by Chinese Malaysians in the predominantly Malay Muslim country.
“Nothing wrong or an offence for a party to convey its supporters’ wish at certain times,” he said instead.
“When a decision is made, what’s important is that we hold to party discipline and manners for harmony,” he added.
The MCA religious harmony bureau chairman then accused Dr Mahathir of having a “malicious political intent” in publicising past party communications within the Barisan Nasional (BN) ruling coalition.
“This is Tun M’s malicious political attempt to fish for votes,” Ti said.
On his blog post last night, Dr Mahathir who was also former BN chairman disclosed that the MCA had requested for a deputy prime minister post in 2009 in response to allegations that predominantly Chinese Opposition party, the DAP, had recently laid claim to the post if their Pakatan Harapan pact wins the next general elections.
Dr Mahathir said MCA deputy secretary-general Datuk Loke Yuen Yow had then asked Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak for a second deputy prime minister post for the party president then, in addition to the BN deputy chairman post.
The 91-year-old government critic who now counts himself a member of the Opposition said he highlighted the issue to clarify an earlier “mistake” when he said the DAP had asked for a second deputy prime minister post to be created and for one its own to be appointed to it.
Dr Mahathir then had linked his post to a report by the Malaysian Information Department in April 2009 on the proposal, which quoted Loke saying that the two posts should be filled by the MCA president to reflect “true power sharing”, in addition to proof that the government gives priority to the role and contribution of the Chinese community.
DAP leaders have repeatedly refuted the claims that they were pushing for the DPM post, saying the Opposition pact has never discussed their potential Cabinet line-up save for the post of prime minister, which should be held by their de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, who is currently serving a five-year jail sentence for sodomy.
– Malay Mail Online