Local govt election proposal an attempt to sabotage Anthony Loke?

19 Dec 2023 10:24am
DAP secretary-general and Transport Minister Anthony Loke File Pix
DAP secretary-general and Transport Minister Anthony Loke File Pix

SHAH ALAM - The controversy over the proposed non-Malay Prime Minister and local authority elections (PBT) by two veteran DAP leaders is believed to have been deliberately triggered as an effort by certain groups of the party to sabotage the leadership of its Secretary-General, Anthony Loke.

Malaysia Nusa Research Centre Political Studies Researcher Arif Anwar Lokmanol Hakim said that under the new leadership of the Transport Minister, it was seen as more centrist (moderate) compared to former incumbent Lim Guan Eng.

It was understood that there was an effort from a faction of Lim family supporters who were trying to put pressure on Loke to speed up the implementation ​​of Malaysian Malaysia (secular country) idea.

He said that although Loke received unanimous support to be appointed as DAP Secretary-General in the Central Executive Committee (CEC) election, implicitly the battle between Lim's faction camp and the centrist camp led by him was still taking place.

"This group of Lim faction leaders is aware of the implications of such controversial statements will have a negative impact on Anthony's leadership, at a time when he fully understands the importance of gaining the support of Malay voters to strengthen the unity government.

"Certainly, this issue will not only have a major impact on the DAP-Umno relationship but also on the stability aspect of the unity government itself. This is because Umno and Barisan Nasional (BN) are still considered kingmakers in determining the survival of the existing government.

"Anthony is indeed facing various pressures from the Lim faction, including efforts to change Penang Chief Minister Chow Kon Yeow before the current Penang state election," he told Sinar Premium on Monday.

He was commenting on the proposal of Federal Territories DAP Chairman, Tan Kok Wai who called for local government elections to be reinstated in the country starting with Kuala Lumpur.

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Local government elections were once established in this country but were abolished in 1960 after the oppositions at the time, Barisan Sosialis and Parti Progresif Rakyat won in big cities including Georgetown, Melaka, Seremban and Ipoh.

Earlier, DAP Advisor Tan Sri Lim Kit Siang when speaking in front of Malaysian students in Manchester, Britain said that the Malaysian Constitution in 1957 nor after it was amended in 1963 did not restrict any non-Malay from becoming Prime Minister.

Commenting further, Arif insisted that Anthony cannot continue to remain silent and it was appropriate to issue a statement that can ease the anger of Malays due to the controversial proposal from Tan and Lim.

"This controversy sparked by DAP is expected to pose a major challenge to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and his deputy Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi in managing the negative perception of the Malays at the grassroots level of their respective parties.

"Zahid may take the approach of reprimanding DAP behind the scenes, but they will not attract support for the existing government.

"For Anwar and Amanah, they will struggle to balance the challenge of strengthening the survival of Malay voter support which is increasingly failing with DAP's secular agenda," he said.

Meanwhile, National Professors Council (MPN) research fellow Dr Muhammad Asri Mohd Ali said that DAP still has not learned from the history of the fall of the Pakatan Harapan (PH) Government 1.0 where the Malays rejected the party's efforts to implement a culture of 'multiculturalism' in the administration of this country.

He said that the culture of multiculturalism or the application values ​​of immigrants in the life practices of natives is a system that is rejected by most developed countries around the world including Britain, Indonesia and France.

"The truth is that DAP has never understood. The Malays reject them not because they are Chinese or DAP, but because they are trying to create a real political system that is against the will of the people.

"Malaysia's aboriginal will not accept immigrant leaders who are not assimilated with their traditional culture, I believe if this idea continues to be carried by DAP then the unity government will fall at any time," he said.