Nicole Tan Lee Koon 陳丽群, Secretary of DAP Seremban Branch is saddened and disappointed that a Chinese leader like Chua Soi Lek (CSL) has shown contempt for the Malaysian voters’ democratic right to scrutinise leaders through open debates. Only in a Third-World-Malaysia can public debates and thus public scrutiny be ignored, denied and suppressed, especially before the general elections. By Athenian principles and John F. Kennedy’s standards, CSL has committed a crime !
CSL recently made statements on 8th of July, 2012 in The Star (http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/7/8/nation/20120708165703&sec=nation) and 11th of July, 2012 in Mysinchew and Bernama (http://www.mysinchew.com/node/75317) and The Star (http://thestar.com.my/news/story.asp?file=/2012/7/10/nation/20120710190053&sec=nation), respectively that he will not be debating Lim Guan Eng (LGE) again as it is “a waste of time” and that Najib need not debate with Anwar as “he is a proven leader”. CSL can only get away with these kind of utterances if he thinks Malaysians have Third World mentality like him.
Open debate is a platform for the Malaysian voters to judge whether the candidates are electable. John F. Kennedy quoted “No president should fear public scrutiny of his program, for from that scrutiny comes understanding, and from that understanding comes support or opposition; and both are necessary… Without debate, without criticism, no administration and no country can succeed, and no republic can survive. That is why the Athenian law makers once decreed it a crime for any citizen to shrink from controversy”. Hence, CSL has shown contempt for the Malaysian voters’ democratic right to scrutinise leaders through open debates.
Elections of governments or wakil rakyats are part of a country’s democratic process. To be a leader or Chief Executive Officer of a company one needs to have the proper qualifications and track record. Basically, a good Curriculum Vitae. What more to be a leader of a country? Hence, leaders/potential leaders need to be put under public scrutiny in terms of qualifications and track record.
Gone are the days of leader-centricism where the rakyats are supposed to be grateful to the leaders and follow the leaders blindly. Now, we need people-centric leaders, i.e leaders who are willing to be subjected to public scrutiny. Just look at the current Presidential Debates between Mitt Romney and Obama. It is opined that Najib as the PM of Malaysia (albeit without a mandate) should open himself to public scrutiny by debating with Anwar. Election is about trust and allowing the Rakyat to vote for the best candidate in terms of their character, knowledge and past deeds. By debating, we can judge whether they can articulate their policies well or not. The downside of an open debate is that ghosts of the past may come to haunt the debaters i.e their past misdeeds may come back to haunt them of which they do not have the answers. All the skeletons in their cupboard will be exposed and they have nowhere to hide. For example, CSL was dumbfounded when confronted by the questions about Nazri calling MCA “the battered wives” and the privatization of the Penang port.
CSL and Najib’s denial and suppression of open debates and public scrutiny will cause the Malaysian voters to speculate that they fear the raising of scandalous issues like Mongolia, Altantuya, Scorpene, PKFZ, Teoh Beng Hock, Ahmad Sarbani, Kugan, etc. Similarly, in Negeri Sembilan, the failure of Dr Yeow Chai Thiam to openly debate with Anthony Loke will raise much speculations that he fear the raising of embarrassing issues of his past record as the wakil rakyat in the Jimah constituency. Like the JE disaster; more than 100 people’s death; destruction of all pigs farms; termination of pig rearing activities; the JE trust funds and MCA Humanitarian Funds; repeated failure of election promises to reinstate pig farming; the failed integrated pig rearing centre; the plight of the pig farmers cum investors; and the location of Bukit Nanas near Bukit Pelandok as the sole national Toxic Waste Management Centre. The only way to avoid the unchallenged conclusions is for Dr Yeow willingly and happily, to openly debate Anthony Loke without making silly and stupid excuses and conditions.
13th of July, 2012 (Friday)
Nicole Tan Lee Koon 陳丽群,
Secretary of DAP Seremban Branch
惟有在大马这样的第三世界国家中，公开辩论及公众审议可被疏忽、否决和被压制，尤其是在全国大选期间。与雅典民主原则（Athenian principles）和约翰.F.肯尼迪（John F. Kennedy）的标准下，蔡细历已犯错。