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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

CAN WE HAVE AN HONEST RESPONSE, PLEASE?

By SSK

Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) should remain a Malay-only institution, said its pro-chancellor, Tan Sri Dr Abdul Rahman Arshad.

Tan Sri Dr Rahman was responding to a call by DAP's Teluk Intan by-election candidate, Dyana Sofya Mohd Daud, for equal access to public institutions of higher learning in Malaysia.

Tan Sri Dr Rahman argued that UiTM was set up based on Article 153 of the Federal Constitution of Malaysia and stressed that Bumiputera privileges should not be questioned.

 This is clearly a move by DAP to court the Chinese voters who are said to be divided as to whether to vote for DAP or Barisan Nasional in the by-election. However, to touch sensitive matters such as UiTM and Article 153 of the Constitution is a very risky strategy because this just turns the campaign into a Malay versus non-Malay contest.

Dyana Sofya had also earlier made a statement regarding the Islamic Sharia law of Hudud. In that statement, which Malaysiakini published on Youtube, Dyana Sofya indicated that she is opposed to Hudud, as this is her party’s stand.

Today she refused to comment on the matter, probably realising that her earlier comment was counter-productive.

An election or by-election is the platform and opportunity for candidates to explain their party’s policy and ideology to the voters. This is where you inform the voters as to what your party’s stand is. You cannot tell the voters you refuse to comment about this or that when asked because that would mean you are not being open and are hiding certain things from the voters.

If DAP is opposed to Article 153 and UiTM as a Malay-only institution, plus you is opposed to PAS pushing for Islamic laws, then this must be very clearly stated so that the voters will know the stand of the party they are being asked to vote for.

It is dishonest for the party to ask the voters for their votes but then refuse to tell the voters what their stand is regarding very sensitive issues like Article 153, UiTM and Hudud.

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