Tuesday, October 16, 2012
We are a loyal opposition, loyal to Malaysia : Lee Kuan Yew
In 1964, the PAP contested on the opposition ticket in the Malaysian Federal General Elections. It won just one out of nine seats contested.
EXCERPTS OF SPEECH BY LEE KUAN YEW GIVEN AT A MASS RALLY AT SULEIMAN COURT, KUALA LUMPUR ON MONDAY, 22ND MARCH, 1964.
"I do not believe people in Kuala Lumpur are less hard-working, less skillful, have less imagination and drive, than people in Singapore. Nor is there any difference between Penang, Seremban, Malacca or Johore and Singapore. In fact the success story of Singapore, of the last few years, was one achieved to a large extent by men from Malaya. Seven out of nine Singapore Ministers came from Malaya, seven out of nine Permanent Secretaries came from Malaya, four out of six judges are from Malaya. So also most of Singapore's trade union leaders and business executives have come from Malaya. For many years there was a drift of talent to Singapore. These Malayans helped Singapore succeed. Now with Malaysia the stage is set for these men to do their duty by Malaya and by the States of their origin. With the wealth of experience gained in the struggle in Singapore they can make the social revolution in Malaya succeed with even fewer mistakes."
"A victory for the nine PAP parliamentary candidates -- five in Kuala Lumpur, the Malaysian capital, and one each in Penang, Seremban, Malacca and Johore -- will trigger off the social revolution in Malaya. True, if we have nine seats in Malaya, plus 12 in Singapore, the total of 21 could make PAP the largest single party outside UMNO."
EXCERPTS OF SPEECH BY LEE KUAN YEW GIVEN AT A MASS RALLY AT MALACCA FRIDAY, 27TH MARCH, 1964.
"The choice before Malacca is this contrast, between an M.C.A. type of government that talks of building a property-owning democracy, of which the Wolferstan housing scheme in Malacca is an illustrious example, 143 units at $14,000 per unit.
The alternative is Singapore's low cost housing at $4,000 per unit, with a flat every 45 minutes.
Our candidate, Mr. Chua Sian Chin, is born and bred in Malacca. A vote for him is a vote for this honest and effective leadership typified by one of the finance ministers from Malacca, Dr. Goh Keng Swee. What Malaysia needs is a practical man who will provide the people who earn $65 per month with some of the social amenities of a modern civilized society paid for more by the "haves" in the States in order to ease the burden of life, free school books for the poor, scholarships in abundance for the bright children, free clinics and hospitals, free social amenities for recreation in community centres, better roads, more and free water supplies, electricity, drainage and anti-flood projects, housing and social welfare. All these things make for a democracy of reasonably social standards and social services for all, not a democracy of property-owners of the few."
EXCERPTS OF SPEECH BY MR. LEE KUAN YEW AT A MASS RALLY IN KLUANG ON SUNDAY, 29TH MARCH, 1964.
"The lack of social change has been because two multi-millionarie finance ministers, first Tun H.S. Lee and next Mr. Tan Siew Sin, have been in charge of the financial and economic policies of Malaya. If these policies had any relevance in meeting the social and economic problems of our time, there would not have been the growing volume of protest against the MCA in the towns, leading to the spontaneous surge of support for the PAP's policies with out participation in these elections."
EXCERPTS OF LEE KUAN YEW'S SPEECH AT A RALLY AT SERDANG BATU, KUALA LUMPUR, ON MONDAY, 6TH APRIL, 1964.
"I had spoken of the need to narrow the gap between the "haves" and "have-nots" in a social revolution.
In 1962 Singapore spend $63.0-million as against Malay's $93.6-million for health services. This means that per head of population for health services, Singapore spend approximately three times more than Malaya. This difference in health services lead more than 4,000 mothers from Johore every year to come specially to deliver their babies at Kandang Kerbau Hospital. We shall be happy to direct these 4,000 women, who often arrive in taxis on the point of delivery, to some other institution which is paid from the Federal vote if only Mr. Tan would tell us where. It will save Singapore about 10% of the expenses of K.K. Hospital."
EXCERPTS OF LEE KUAN YEW'S SPEECH AT A MASS RALLY AT PETALING JAYA, KUALA LUMPUR, ON 11TH APRIL, 1964.
"Whatever our faults it is not communalism or chauvinism. In Singapore where the Malay vote is only 15%, we have honored Malay rights and give all Malays free education from primary to university level, something the Central Government cannot do. Our sin, it would appear, is to be able to muster a following in the urban areas which includes a large bulk of the Chinese."
EXCERPTS OF LEE KUAN YEW'S SPEECH AT A RALLY AT CITY STADIUM, PENANG, ON 19TH APRIL, 1964.
"At the moment, 90% of the armed forces and police are Malays. The Malay leadership is unhappy at the prospect of having to introduce more Chinese, Indians and other races into the armed forces. This may weaken the army as the last defence of Malay political pre-eminence. But at the same time, the Malay leaders know the guerilla battle will go on with Indonesia, and they cannot go on just having Malay soldiers to fight this battle. The armed forces must be strengthened by non-Malays. If the non-Malays are loyal, then the 30-40% non-Malays in the police force cannot be a security danger in Malaya. And it is in the interests of our urban population to show the Malay leadership that we are loyal to Malaysia and that we can be trusted to defend it. The danger is not that we shall be sent as soldiers to the front and die. It is that we may not be allowed to train to defend the country. Then we shall not be allowed to be trained to defend the country. Then we shall be spectators as when the Japanese army marched in to enslave us in 1942 while we watched hopelessly."
"The best election result to preserve Malaysia against external threat is one in which all UMNO candidates are returned in the rural areas and pro-Malaysia parties are returned in the urban areas. The best result internally for our progress and for bringing about the winds of change in economic and social policies is to have the UMNO leadership returned, but the MCA discarded, a vote for the MCA is a vote for the continued inactivity, complacency and decadence. To bring about this change, there must be a jolt on the leadership of the Government. That jolt can come about by voting for the PAP and other opposition parties who, like the PAP, are pro-Malaysia."
EXCERPTS OF SPEECH BY LEE KUAN YEW AT A RALLY AT THE ESPLANADE, PENANG, ON 20TH APRIL, 1964.
"We spend 15 times as much as Kuala Lumpur on social welfare benefits ($8.9 per head as against Federation's $0.59), about three times as much on health benefits ($37 per head as against Federation's $13.5) and twice as much on education ($52 as against Federation's $32) per head of population. What is more, we get more worth out of every dollar than Kuala Lumpur. We build a two-room flat at $4,100 whilst Johore builds the same type of unit for over $7,500. We build a three-room flat for $4,900 whilst the same type of unit in Malacca cost $9,000. And so it is with the cost of all the schools, hospitals, clinics, creches, and community centres. We have over 150 community centres, both urban and rural type, for an island of 220 square miles. We have over 25 clinics, including maternity and child health centres, to ease the pressure on five hospitals."
SOME POINTS FROM LEE KUAN YEW'S SPEECH AT A RALLY IN KUALA LUMPUR ON 23RD APRIL, 1964.
"One of the most noticeable features of the urban areas in their attitude towards the MCA leadership is the humiliation people feel at having these men represent them. That they are greedy is bad enough. Worse they are clowns, and often they make one feel a fool.
I once sat through an opening ceremony of a $17-million building in Kuala Lumpur. There were hundreds of dignitaries from all over the world who had come to attend an international conference in Kuala Lumpur. I heard the man not only thank the architect and give a history of his career of how this expatriate had
gone on study tours of such specialised buildings on our behalf and at our expense. Then he capped it all by expressing his grateful thanks to the contractor
who had probably the largest share of the $17-million. It's time we restore our self-respect.
We are in Malaysia. These men do represent us abroad. And they give us the creeps as they falter and fumble. Every time they go to the conference arena to meet the enemies on our behalf, we pray for them. For if they fail, we fail. Let us be done with these men. The UMNO horse will run and win. But for our own sake, let us get some of people who really know how to train and ride the horse to victory."
MESSAGE BY LEE KUAN YEW ON THE EVE OF POLL, 24TH APRIL, 1964.
"Parliament democracy of the one-man one-vote will work only if people choose rationally from the alternatives they are offered in an election. The ideal is never offered. The voter is faced with a limited choice of alternatives. He must reconcile his hopes and aspirations with the parties offered him.
We have not contested in all the urban areas because it is not practical in the present situation. We may have been misunderstood as a challenge and an alternative to UMNO as the next government. We have a token number of candidates, but a token of considerable significance. If all the nine win, an agonising reappraisal will have to be made. In the heat of elections, it is said that even though there are only five MCA MPs left, UMNO will still carry the MCA that may well be. But can UMNO leaders go through the awful predicament of pretending for the next five years that these five MCA MPs really represent the urban Chinese? Five men who have won by UMNO's leave and licence in Malay rural areas?
The rational choice in these elections is to vote for UMNO in the rural areas, and vote for the PAP in the urban areas. Where there is no PAP, vote for other pro-Malaysia opposition parties. Where the choice is between only the MCA and the S.F. then out with the S.F. For whilst the MCA has been a bane on our society, the S.F. will be a blight on Malaysia."
EXCERPTS OF STATEMENT BY LEE KUAN YEW, 26th April, 1964
"I am disappointed that the nine PAP candidates did not fare better. But I take great satisfaction in the fact that far from being a disruptive force, we have helped to bring home the dangers of Indonesian confrontation and subversion and contributed to the rout of the Socialist Front.
The results could not have been better for international effect. No government in the world can now doubt that Malaysia is the free will of its people -- Sabah, Sarawak, Singapore and Malaya. All the strident voices that were raised against it over the last few years were those of reckless adventurers and traitors.
My one concern at the election results is that it means the old order will carry on, the same old economic and social policies in the same old way. This would be a retrograde step and must be prevented. Exposing and isolating the S.F. meant that the MCA benefitted. But the issue was too vital for petty party considerations to deter us from pressing the lesson home. We had hoped that our token participation would have given the people of the bigger towns an opportunity to endorse our economic and social policies towards a more egalitarian society. But I am afraid the token participation was too subtle a method of doing it. Since we said "back the Tunku" and since the Tunku said "back all my colleagues in the MCA and MIC", we had to accept this situation arising."
EXCERPTS OF SPEECH BY LEE KUAN YEW IN REPLY TO THE YANG DI-PERTUAN AGONG'S ADDRESS IN PARLIAMENT ON 21ST MAY, 1964.
"It gives me great satisfaction to see around us in this House all those who took a leading part in the formation of Malaysia. It gives me equal satisfaction to see that many of those who obstructed and opposed Malaysia are no longer with us. We shall not miss the false prophets in the Socialist Front who did their vicious best to wreck Malaysia.
The fundamental distinction between us and two other opposition parties, the P.M.I.P. and the S.F., is that we want Malaysia and the democratic system to succeed, even though it means credit is reflected thereby on the Prime Minister and his colleagues. We are a loyal opposition, loyal to Malaysia and the democratic system of government that obtains in Malaysia. Our criticism will therefore be directed to pointing out the dangers of policies that will lead to failure and to checking the lapses of political leaders and administrators that could lead to a breakdown of the whole system. But a loyal opposition does not mean that a subservient opposition. Criticisms, however unwelcome, will have to be made, seriously and in good faith. We hope they will be taken equally seriously and in good faith.
It is inevitable that the newly independent nations of Asia and Africa must move towards a more egalitarian society. For having stimulated men's minds for more equal opportunities and mobilised men's energies and loyalties to be rid of the inequities of the colonial system, there is no stopping the process after independence. This is a tide of history. It would be foolish to stop it. We deem it our duty to ease the way forward towards a more just and equal society.
This consolidation must take place at two levels. First, the three new States -- Singapore, Sarawak and Sabah -- must be made more and more to think and to feel a part of the new Federation. This is a two-way process. The leaders of the Central Government set the pace and the leaders of the State Governments can help to quicken or dampen this pace by the manner of their response. If we think and feel as Malaysians, then we will talk in the same language. This in turn will imbue our people with the same values and objectives. Within these five years we should strive to make the three new States regard themselves and be regarded by the eleven old States as a part of Malaysia and as closely integrated as the old eleven.
But if at the end of our term, we are thinking, feeling and reacting not as Malaysians as so many Malays, or Chinese or Indians, or equally bad as so many Malayans, Singaporeans, Sarawakians, or Sabahans, then our future will be in jeopardy. We must not fail our own people.
One of the reasons why Western style parliamentary democracy has failed to take roots in the newly independent countries of Asia and Africa is that the government in power does not contemplate with equanimity the passing of power to the opposition, and also because the opposition opposes merely to bring the Government down regardless of the harm inflicted upon the country.
The Prime Minister has never been in a personally stronger position. He is even stronger now than he was in 1955 when on the issue of Merdeka 50 out of 51 Alliance candidates were returned. I say he is even stronger now because he has got this present mandate after nine years of office with everybody knowing what he stands for. From his position of strength, he can demand higher standards of his colleagues in the Government and of the officials in the administration. If he does so, the country will be that much the healthier and eventually the happier for it. From us he will get no carping criticism for the sake of scoring points. We have a vested interest to see that he succeeds in creating a healthier economy and more honest effective administration."