Thursday, December 04, 2008

Dr Chua questioned by cops over Ketuanan Melayu

By Shannon Teoh

Police are now entering the fray in the public debate over Ketuanan Melayu when they questioned MCA deputy president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek over his remarks on the issue.

The former Health Minister had his statement recorded at the Sunway police this morning.

He was interviewed by police for “41 minutes and 22 seconds”, a surprisingly jovial Dr Chua told reporters this afternoon.

“They quizzed me on my specific reference to Ketuanan Melayu and why I used it and whether it was used to incite hate and tension between races,” he said at a press conference in the MCA headquarters.

On Nov 27, Dr Chua had spoken on the terminology Ketuanan Melayu used as the basis of power-sharing in Barisan Nasional (BN) at the Kancil Awards for the advertising industry.

He was, however, accused of questioning the sovereignty of Malay rulers, Malay rights and Bahasa Malaysia as the national language.

On Monday, the Young Malay Graduates Movement (GGMM), a Malay rights group, demanded Dr Chua pay RM2 million in compensation for allegedly questioning the special position of the Malays.

This led to Dr Chua calling a press conference to clarify his statement, where he pointed out he was not challenging any of these rights but merely saying that the phrase Ketuanan Melayu had been exploited by some parties as it gave the impression that BN component parties were slaves to Umno.

Racial tension has been on the rise recently especially between Malays and Chinese due to the public debate on Ketuanan Melayu.

Umno Youth chief candidate, Datuk Mukhriz Mahathir, had also on Monday suggested that the education system be unified into one where the main medium of instruction would be Bahasa Malaysia, thereby abolishing vernacular schools.

This has led to widespread condemnation from both Pakatan Rakyat and BN leaders and Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had to put an end to the bickering yesterday by stating that vernacular schools would remain for as long as the Chinese and Indians wanted them.

Yesterday, BN chairman and Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi suggested that the coalition would develop a mechanism for sensitive issues such as those pertaining to race to be discussed internally.

“I think that’s a good idea,” Dr Chua said.

Dr Chua questioned by cops over Ketuanan Melayu
The Malaysian Insider, Malaysia