Shahrizat: May 13 could repeat if Umno weak
Assistant News Editor
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 28 ― The spectre of May 13 was raised today at the opening of the Wanita Umno general assembly here as the wing’s leader Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil used the bloody racial clash encourage delegates to work harder for Umno’s victory.
The politician warned told nearly 1,000 delegates at the Putra World Trade Centre (PWTC) here that a weak Umno would spread uneasiness among the Malay community and possibly invite the same racial conflict that caused the bloodshed during the 1969 tragedy.
“Do we want to such a terrible situation repeated in our country? Of course we do not,” she said according to the text copy of her opening address to those gathered at Dewan Merdeka here.
Shahrizat said Umno must overcome five key challenges to strengthen itself ahead of the coming polls, including fighting off its foes in PAS, attracting more young voters and ensuring that the Malays continue to hold political power.
“If we no longer have power, then the country’s political stability will be affected.
“I fear that this could lead to a racial tension that could invite the same tragedy of May 13, 1969,” she said.
Shahrizat plays the politics of fear to unite the Malays
by Koh Jun Lin@http://www.malaysiakini.com
Wanita UMNO Head Shahrizat Abdul Jalil played the race card in her address to the wing’s general assembly, warning that Malays are in danger of becoming “refugees in our own land” if they do not unite to retain political power.
Among the challenges UMNO faces in the next general election is the safeguarding of Malay power, which is in a perilous position (bagai telur di hujung tanduk), Shahrizat told the delegates.
“We must address this now if we don’t want to be refugees in our own land. A split in the Malay vote would dull the political power of the Malays,” she said.
“As it is, economic power lies in the hands of non-Malays. Are we willing to lose political power too? If UMNO is weak, the risks will be felt by all other ethnic groups.If Malays unite and form a strong backbone for the elected government, especially with a two-thirds parliamentary majority, then, God willing, all races and all layers of society will gain from the political stability.”
Lack of time
Shahrizat skipped most of her speech and asked the 979 delegates present to read its text, citing lack of time. In a copy distributed to the media, she expressed concerns that a racial riot could occur if UMNO became weak and could not overcome its challenges.
“If we are no longer in power, we would lose political stability. Certainly, the Malays, the majority in this country, would be unsettled.I am concerned and worried that this would bring racial tensions that could lead to a repeat of the May 13, 1969 tragedy,” she said, urging delegates to overcome the challenges.
The other challenges include facing eroding non-Malay support for UMNO, religious issues raised by PAS, increase support from young voters, and maintain UMNO’s relevance as a Malay party.
On the lack of non-Malay support, she said this had caused problems in mixed constituencies. “To face the next general election, we need to overcome this problem and I ask Wanita UMNO to close ties and work on our inter-racial relations.Can promise or not? We must because they are Malaysian citizens too,” she said.
In her speech, Shahrizat pledged that as long as she is Wanita chief, she would ensure that the women’s wing would field more candidates at the general election.
“Don’t you dare think that Wanita is only eligible to be part of the party machinery and not as candidates,” she said.
She concluded her speech by urging all delegates to stand up and pledge loyalty to UMNO President Najib Abdul Razak, as she drummed up the delegate’s spirits with a poem in Malay.
November 28, 2012
Jahabar Sadiq on Shahrizat’s “May 13″ Speech at UMNO GA
Wanita UMNO chief Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil spoke today about the possibility of a “May 13” incident if UMNO is weak and performs poorly in the next polls. Does she think she can whip her party colleagues into working harder or cow the voters into supporting Barisan Nasional (BN) with such talk?
And is she implying UMNO would provoke the violence? Her top two party leaders are preaching moderation but she is talking about violence, further embarrassing the party still reeling from her family’s National Feedlot Centre (NFC) scandal. Shahrizat should inspire her members to win, not scare them or Malaysians at the ballot box. She’s an example of politicians that Datuk Seri Najib Razak should ditch for their lack of ideas to ensure a BN victory.
My Comment: Shahrizat Abdul Jalil has shamelessly used the UMNO General Assembly to raise the spectre of the May 13 incident to create a climate of fear among the Malays. It is unnecessary for the leader of Wanita UMNO to even mention this unfortunate incident which occurred when she is a little school girl in Penang (I was 30 years old when it happened, but I was in the United States to pursue my postgraduate studies). Looking back at it now, I realise it was an isolated incident as it happened only in Kuala Lumpur, not nation wide.
Times have changed. Malaysians have grown up, are better educated and more exposed to global developments and democracy, and will not be provoked. We all have plenty to lose if we fall prey to racist provocations. 2012 is not 1969. We are too astute to fall prey to politicians like Shahrizat.
With the introduction of the New Economic Policy in 1970 and its vigorous pursuit under Tun Dr. Mahathir, Malays now control the banks, and businesses big time via the GLCs and Permodalan Nasional Berhad. At the same time, NEP resulted in crony capitalism, the bane of UMNO today. Kleptocrats are having a field day, amassing massive fortunes for themselves, families and cronies.
The socio-economic landscape has been transformed (or deformed?). The development of Malay intellectual capital is a NEP success story. There are now many Malay professionals in all fields from science, medicine and dentistry, engineering and research. So Malay fears are imagined, not real.
The rural sector has benefited from the NEP. Plantation and tin mining companies were acquired from the British under the late Tun Abdul Razak. FELDA and other agencies were created to uplift the economic status of the rural Malays. Our problem today, however, is the increasing income gap between the rich and poor Malay.
Social inequity and corruption pose serious threat to UMNO and our country.Other races have been marginalised. If UMNO is weak, it is of its own making.
The way for UMNO to regain its credibility is to end corruption and abuses of power, and adopt sound good governance practices. Be a responsible government and listen to the rakyat.
But then, I cannot expect Shahrizat to talk about these issues, since she herself is deeply caught up in the NFC scandal. It is time for her to step down and hand over the leadership of Wanita UMNO to someone else who has a clean record.–Din Merican
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