KUALA LUMPUR – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak declared himself today as the champion of development for the ethnic Indian minority.
In his speech at the launch of MIC’s annual general meeting today, Najib said that under his leadership, much has been done for the Indians, compared to previous administrations.
“The Cabinet committee on Indian affairs was started when I was the deputy prime minister. Without political will, the Indians would be neglected, marginalised and left behind.
“Though my father and grandfather were not from Kerala, I am called the father of Indian community development,” Najib said to thunderous applause from the floor, in a veiled jibe at former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s Indian lineage.
Najib said that under his leadership, RM800 million had been approved for Tamil schools, which he claimed was the largest sum history.
He added that the government had also approved RM1.3 billion in loans for small and medium scale Indian traders, with 32,000 of them receiving a share of the sum via banks and government agencies.
In his speech, Najib also urged MIC to produce winnable candidates to contest in the next national polls.
“You have to produce leaders. I know MIC wants to contest in seats which were distributed before this, to MIC. You have to produce winnable candidates,” he said.
“Winnable candidates are credible candidates, candidates who can appeal. Must have acceptance from all races, because the reality is, (there is) not a single constituency in Malaysia, where you have the majority voters who are Indians. So if MIC wants to win, it has to depend on support from other races.”
– Malay Mail