Monday, June 20, 2011

DAP faults Umno for Perkasa threats

Perkasa members burn pictures of Ambiga during the launch of their counter-protest, in Kampung Baru, June 19, 2011.

DAP’s Lim Guan Eng pronounced Umno guilty today of fanning racial and religious strife for its tacit support of Perkasa’s “Nazi-like” threat against ethnic Chinese ahead of three massive — and conflicting — marches on July 9.

The DAP secretary-general further accused the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) lynchpin of being “politically bankrupt” for resorting to provocation to cover its own shortcomings.

Lim pointed out Umno and the BN government have been deflecting questions on health and environmental safety over Australian miner Lynas Corp’s RM700 million rare earths project in Pahang and the Tourism Ministry’s RM1.8million Facebook scandal.

Election watchdog Bersih 2.0 has called on civil society to join its march in the national capital here as it lobbies the Najib administration to carry out electoral reforms. This is also being countered by separate rallies on the same day from right-wing Malay nationalist group Perkasa and Umno Youth.

Perkasa founder and president Datuk Ibrahim Ali kicked off yesterday its counter-strike to Bersih by burning images of its chief, Datuk Ambiga Sreenevasan, whom he labelled a “dangerous Hindu woman”.

Ibrahim also warned the minority Chinese community to stay home and stock up on food as “anything could happen”, once again resurrecting the ghost of the bloody May 13, 1969 race riots.

Lim denounced the Perkasa man’s actions and remarks at Kampung Baru as “vile and malicious... nothing short of seditious”.

“By allowing such fascistic and Nazi-like threats by Ibrahim Ali, Umno is indeed showing its true colours as a party that survives on racial division,” the Penang chief minister said in a statement today.

“In its refusal to take action, Umno is therefore guilty of supporting Perkasa and its stand,” he added.

Lim demanded Umno stop the issuance of such provocative racial and religious sentiments, saying they were dangerous and could lead to unrest.

The Bagan MP reminded Umno the provocation has been going on for a while, and highlighted what he called “Umno’s lack of will in taking action” in past incidents, such as the 2009 cow-head protest and derogatory remarks by Umno leaders equating Indians to beggars and Chinese women to prostitutes.

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