Liu is the Chinese chauvinist we do not need, says Pua

(FMT) – Damansara MP Tony Pua has slammed party colleague Ronnie Liu for asking DAP not to “dilute its Chineseness”, saying Liu “is the Chinese chauvinist that DAP does not need”.

He said Liu, the Sungai Pelek assemblyman, wanted DAP to reverse the progress it had made to “become a more inclusive party that is more representative of all Malaysians”, to protect its “Chineseness”.

“That is as chauvinist as one can get and DAP can certainly do without such chauvinists in the party,” Pua said in a statement today.

In simpler terms, he said, Liu was arguing that DAP should stick to the formula as being the alternative to MCA.

“Frankly speaking, that is perhaps the biggest insult one can throw at DAP today.

“MCA has ‘Chineseness-ed’ themselves into oblivion today. They are completely at the mercy of the whims and fancies of the big brothers – Umno, PPBM and PAS – who provide MCA with political life support,” he said.

Yesterday, Liu said DAP should not belittle or degrade itself just to gain Malay support but instead safeguard its culture as well as its constitutional spirit, pluralistic and democratic political struggle.

His statement was immediately criticised by Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh, who said Liu “has done a great disservice to many of us DAP leaders out there who are working hard to fight off prejudices and stigmas against DAP”.

Pua said DAP has many Malay elected leaders at all levels and nearly all states, as well as young and progressive Malay leaders at the branch and grassroots levels.

“They have joined the party in recent years as they saw DAP as a party which has fought for the rights of all Malaysians regardless of race and religion.

“Most importantly, they have found that the new generation of top DAP leaders are sensitive and cognisant of the fears, apprehension and insecurities of the Malay community,” he said.

However, Pua said the transformation of the party was not complete and DAP still had a long road ahead to make it the party of choice for all Malaysians, and not just for the oppressed minority.

DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang also said DAP had been falsely accused of being anti-Malay, anti-Islam and anti-royalty when throughout its history, the party had remained committed to the “Malaysian dream” for the country to become a world-class nation regardless of race, religion or region.

“The party does not advocate any de-Chinese, de-Malay, de-Indian, de-Kadazan or de-Iban policy, but to accept that Malaysians will have multiple identities and acknowledge that they are all Malaysians,” he said at an event last night.

Lim said it was a failure of Malaysian nation-building and nationhood if, after six decades, Malaysians still regard their ethnic, religious or cultural identity first and consider their common Malaysian identity second.