Nov 21, 2006

Kit Siang tables motion to debate 'seditious' Umno speeches

(The Sun) KUALA LUMPUR (Nov 20, 2006): Opposition Leader Leader Lim Kit Siang (DAP-Ipoh Timur) today said an emergency motion has been submitted to debate the "insensitive, incendiary and seditious" speeches in the recently concluded Umno and Umno Youth general assemblies.

He said the motion also sought to debate the act of waving the Panca Warisan kris by Umno Youth chief Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein for the second consecutive year.

"It has caused grave damage to the nation-building process and efforts to enhance international competitiveness by scaring away foreign investors," he said in a statement.

In the motion, Lim stated that the five-day general assembly "saw the worst manifestation of such negative, divisive and destructive polemics on issues related to race and religion".

He said the general assembly represented "a most serious blot" on nation-building for over three decades.

"An urgent debate by Parliament is warranted to undo the grave image which had been done by the Umno general assemblies to the Malaysian psyche, nation-building as well as to Malaysia's international competitiveness and attractiveness as a centre for foreign investment so as to face up to the challenges of globalisation."

He hoped MPs, regardless of whether in the BN ruling coalition or Opposition, will stand up to express their concern at the "irresponsible, provocative and seditious" speeches.

The motion is expected be heard today.

In another statement, Lim urged Penang Chief Minister Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon to set up an independent commission of inquiry to find out the lessons to be drawn from the Seberang Perai Municipal Council (MPSP) demolition of the Bukit Mertajam Tou Boo Kong temple.

"(It is) concerning the handling of 'Little Napoleaons' and the loss of control of the situation resulting in injuries, arrests and firing of two (warning) shots by police."

He said the Penang State Executive Council tomorrow should demonstrate that it will not tolerate 'Little Napoleaons' in any branch of the public service in the state.

"It should take firm action to suspend the MPSP president for openly flouting the authority of the council and Chief Minister," he added.

Regina William reported that the MPSP has kept mum over the incident and did not respond to queries from the press since Friday.

Meanwhile, about 50 people demonstrated outside Parliament House today over the demolition of some Hindu temples.

In a memorandum to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Mohd Nazri Abdul Aziz, which they handed over to a Parliament officer, the Hindu Rights Action Force said 68 temples have been demolished or threatened with demolition.

The group wanted the government to gazette all land with Hindu temples as religious land reserve and for all new residential and townships to set aside land for non-Muslim worship.

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