Mr Lim Kit Siang is the DAP Supremo. He and other DAP leaders are very upset about the statement made by Tun Haniff Omar, a former IGP that, that DAP, after May 1969, had wanted peninsular Malaysia be carved out into two, the eastern part for the Malays and the west to the non Malays. Mr Lim quickly gave an ultimatum to Tun Hanif to withdraw the statement or face legal action. Some other DAP leaders even demanded police investigation for sedition.
I would like to suggest to Mr Lim and DAP to refrain from taking any action against Tun Hanif. The man who served us well over many years to protect us from communists and extremists during a difficult time in our history must be allowed to give his recollections of events , that happened over nearly forty years ago. There is no reason to think he made his remark to stir trouble , or to deliberately malign DAP or Mr Lim. The election is over. There is no reason to doubt his explanation that a special Branch Report was given to him which led him to make those statement. The Special Branch Report could be false or without basis; and we can even concede that Tun Hanif could have made erroneous conclusion from those Report. But to sue him?
Tun Hanif is a well respected policeman. In the eyes of many of us, especially amongst the Malays, he would not deliberately “manufacture” a lie that would endanger the safety and security of this country. He had given more to this country than many other “reformists” combined. What can the court decision do ? Regardless of the outcome , supporters of Mr Lim will hold steadfast to their idol and his reputation will be untarnished. Equally those who believe in the integrity of Tun Haniff will continue to support him. In the process however the court case will add more fireworks ; and the country will go through much turbulence than we are experiencing now.
The Malays are just starting to get used to having a DAP Finance Minister, a Multi Media Minister, a Commodities Minister , an energy Minister ; a Transport Minister , a Deputy Defence Minister and so on. The Malays are just getting used to having a Finance Minister issuing his press statement in Mandarin. The Malays are just getting used to having a non Malay Attorney Attorney General and a Special Emissary To China who is a DAP leader. In physics we learn that when there is an overload or surge of electricity we experience blackout . In politics too we must not put too much “new experiences” on the people lest they may not be able to comprehend and accept the new changes .
I suggest Mr Lim call Tun Haniff for tea and explain his bewilderment or even express his anger at the remarks; and I am sure Tun Haniff a gentleman that he is, will oblige with his own explanation. Two men in the late seventies should be able to talk without acrimony, and diffuse a difficult situation so that we have less “surge of electricity” in our politics. Mr Lim may be thinking that a court case will vindicate and prove him “right” .Being right is not enough for the future of this country. The leaders need to be humble and wise too. We need to be willing to compromise and talk to one another when we have difficult moments. Humility and wisdom are not in short supply and a new Malaysia needs that from their leaders.