Tuesday, October 07, 2008

MCA - still relevant in Malaysian politics?

Today let’s discuss the dilemma facing MCA. Does it have any more relevance in Malaysian politics now that the DAP, and to a smaller extent PKR, has won the Chinese Malaysian community’s political support (except for the State of Johore)?

The other (majority) Chinese based party in the BN, Gerakan had been totally wiped out in the north by the DAP as it had once wiped out the MCA from Penang in 1969.

In yesterday’s Malaysiakini article MCA a 'penumpang' in BN author Foong Wai Fong believed that Ahmad Ismail had been right in his controversial ‘squatter’ comment.

She reckoned Ahmad was “… not targeting the Chinese population at large, but the Chinese-based parties within Barisan Nasional as they are ‘squatting’ in BN and rely on Malay votes and Umno's influence to stay in power.”

How true – it has been said that MCA rode on UMNO’s sarong or coattails to Parliament and most DUNs.

Foong detailed why she made that claim: “The majority of the 20 seats belonging to MCA (15), MIC (3) and Gerakan (2) were elected primarily by Malays and were considered Umno territories. The non-Umno 14 ministers, deputy ministers and parliamentary secretaries were given these positions not because they have won the seats on their right, but were simply riding on Barisan's ticket.”

She reckoned that “… Umno has been kind to them; these parties' electoral performance in no way deserves the number of cabinet positions now bestowed on them.”

But I believe that’s precisely the way UMNO wanted it, a weak and compliant MCA (and Gerakan) to comply with its (UMNO’s) dictates while presenting a faΓ§ade of multi-ethnic politics.

Many were the times UMNO had undermined MCA or made the Chinese based party lose face with the Chinese community. I had blogged on this several times, and here’s one Stung by hornet, mute as only MCA can be over at my other blog BolehTalk to exemplify the perennial dilemma for MCA.

Every time UMNO humiliated MCA, the beneficiary has been the DAP. It’s little wonder that the Chinese community had overwhelmingly supported the DAP in the last election as they had once abandoned the MCA for Lim Chong Eu’s Gerakan in 1969.

One wonders whether UMNO had aped Israel’s covert creation and financial support of Hamas to weaken al Fatah in its undermining of MCA to DAP’s windfall. But just as Hamas proves to be a thorn in Israel side, now the DAP is a thorn in UMNO's side too.


It has come to such a stage that UMNO Selangor feels it necessary to demon-ize Teresa Kok in the worst sinister ways, because to UMNO she has been making frightening inroads into the Malay constituency.

Should the MCA then leave the BN?

Foong in Malaysiakini MCA 2.0 doesn't need bravery, it needs strategy advised against that.

She warned that it’s dangerous to drive a besieged UMNO into the pan-Malay corner, and consequently cursing Malaysia with a political divide along very distinct ethnic lines.

At a time of UMNO’s greatest need, MCA can play a constructive and meaningful role to elevate its status within the BN by helping UMNO a la 1999. But the MCA must convince UMNO that a strong MCA with a meaningful political role (rather than that of a subservient subordinate) can help restore the BN and thus UMNO to its former glory.

Foong wrote: “The demise of MCA will also bring an end to Umno’s or BN's reach to the Chinese community; throwing all the Chinese votes into the welcoming arms of PKR and DAP. MCA has inherent strengths which can be put to effective use; it has a very broad-based membership, over 1.3 million members, a matured organisation and network throughout the country.”

“The Chinese-based party has over RM1 billion in party assets and a long history - many Chinese in Malaysia still would like to see the MCA return to play an effective political role to advance the national agenda.”

Foong advised MCA against the temptation to demonstrate to the Chinese community its bravery by "dare to get angry and dare to speak up” (gan nu gan yan) and in the process rile UMNO.

A tough talking tough acting MCA would be too bitter a pill for UMNO to swallow and thus counterproductive for the MCA.


She said at a time when UMNO is feeling besieged, the MCA behaving excessively assertive would be the wrong medicine to treat the terrible disease the BN is currently suffering from, namely the detested UMNO hegemonic uni-ethnic politics, policies and polemics, and all its attendant ills, corruption and cronyism.

Related: MCA at a crossroad

17 comments:

  1. Well, I haven't met a Chinese who thinks MCA is worth two sen.

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  2. While I enjoyed Fong's first article, I did not like the second one. MCA is no better than UMNOlah..MCA to convince UMNO they can play a more meaningful role in BN??? Ha Ha Ha....MCA has to clean up its own act first...the Chinese has lost faith in MCA...whatever role they choose to play in BN...the RM1Billion assets???Give it back to the Chinese people they plundered from !!!!

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  3. "The non-Umno 14 ministers, deputy ministers and parliamentary secretaries were given these positions not because they have won the seats on their right, but were simply riding on Barisan's ticket.”"

    this is very subjective. take a look at ng yen yen consituency, she's been there for years. plus, if csl din resign, he could have won labis too (his son succeeded him there) . it's unfair to say mca riding on umno ticket...

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  4. and ong tee kiat became mp and minister on his own capability ....

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  5. Just as MCA depends on the malay votes to win, UMNO likewise depends on non-malay votes to get through. When the non-malays voted for PR, BN's component parties suffered massive stroke.

    It will be very hard for MCA, Gerakan, MIC & UMNO to reinvent themselves and stay relevant. All have their hands in the kitty and none is sober enough and wants to suffer any withdrawal symptoms.

    MCA, your days are numbered. Come the next election, I'll bet you will be wiped out just like Gerakan.

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  6. Wow!....Dow got whack another 500 points.

    Amid free fall from other bourse, so far Bursa is quite resilient, like it or not credit must be given to AAB administration.

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  7. MCA was formed from Chiang Kaishek's Kuomintang which brook no opposition. Had it possess the political power, all the DAP leaders would have been flung inside the dungeons of Kamunting long ago

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  8. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

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  9. Crankster said...

    Well, I haven't met a Chinese who thinks MCA is worth two sen.

    Well that's your opinion , NOT mine . MCA still has its role to play .
    MCA has inherent strengths which can be put to effective use; it has a very broad-based membership, over 1.3 million members, a matured organisation and network throughout the country.”

    This is absolutely correct . In the last GE PRU12 , a lot of MCA members were simply disgusted with the MCA leadership . We couldn't stand Ong Ka Ting hugging Kerismuddin . In fact I would say most of us wanted to teach the MCA leadership and UMNO for their ARROGANCE . We voted most of our people out . The leadership put in candidates who were subservient to OKT or rather they were his people in preparation for this coming election . They removed incumbent candidates who won by 15000 votes and above and replaced them with new faces .
    All the new faces lost ! And he had to announced he is not seeking re-election . To cut a long story short , our matured organisation includes all the Divisional and Branch set up . Our memberes are all still there . Come next PRU we would be voting back our own people . We have accomplish our mission of teaching those guys a lesson . It has to be done this way to clean up the party which has been filled with opportunists and corrupt leaders .

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  10. Chaptokam, that wasn't an opinion, it was an observation.

    But my opinion? MCA will be wiped off the face of the planet. Your types have been replaced with modern thinkers.

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  11. Suci Dalam Debu said...

    Just as MCA depends on the malay votes to win, UMNO likewise depends on non-malay votes to get through.

    Correct !! there are many UMNO seats which depend on the NON Malay votes to win , For example a constituency having 60% Malay votes .The Malay votes might be split 50/50 or 60/40 in favour of the opposition . This is where the Non Malay votes play its role .

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  12. Suci Dalam Debu

    MCA, your days are numbered. Come the next election, I'll bet you will be wiped

    Thats what everybody thinks !! Come next election you can expect some state govts to go back to BN . You can be very sure of this !! Take Perak for example ! PR controls the Perak govt by having 31 seats verses 28 for BN . All it needs is just to win two seats anf perak back to BN . MCA contested 16 DUN but won only one . Reason Ong Ka Chuan replaced the existing incumbents with his own people to control Perak . Result MCA only won one DUN , if MCA has won just three , Its BN govt not PR today .

    So don't count your chickens before they are hatched !!

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  13. Crankster

    I don't mind having a debate with you or brain storming on this subject , however I am very busy campaigning for a new party president . That's the reason I didn't have the time to post comments until now . MCA will evolve into a new MCA , just wait until the Party elections are over . Will reply later , got to go now .

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  14. I deleted pistolair's comments as they were too libellous - making all sorts of accusations, which may or may not be true but which I am not prepared to have on my blog as I cannot defend myself against a suit when there's no evidence whatoever. Besides this guy is spamming anti Najib messages (another G.A.N?) - hey, go post them at RPK's blog.

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  15. The BN model presupposes the need by each community to have its own ways,culture,economy, language, future, etc protected through a political process.

    There is the assumption that we are all set in our own tracks, never to merge, but to run our separate races according to the rules set by "leaders" of each track. Only thing is, in the last few decades just one leader from one track has been decding for everyone.

    Looking forward, everytime mention is made of BN, I cannot help but continue to see that to BN and its component parties , the future has to still go around this premise that we are Malays, Indians, Chinese, Others and that we are to be governed according to that that is presented to us.

    The concept of bangsa Malaysia is missing. With BN, its either a Chinese problem, Malay problem or an Indian problem and we all know who is supposed to deal with it.

    Pakatan Rakyat offers the gleamest of hope that we can have something better. Where we can all sit together as equals where any problem is a Malaysian problem.

    This is what we should all be supporting. When we can all see the chance for a Malaysian society, that is what we should be doing. Supporting it.

    If we see the UK for instance, we see Labour, Conservative and the Liberal Democrats coming from all parts of the country. Regional parties, like those from Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales do't get very far.

    In the Malaysian context, rather than regional, it is racial except for the East Malaysian Parties which are both racial and regional.

    Can we hope for a party like Keadilanor DAP which is neither racial or regional? Then maybe for once the focus can be on the people, the economy, the nation.

    With AAB, we can seeso clearly that since 8 March, he has spent more time being PResident of UMNO than ebing Prime Minister. Even in all the talk over his departure it is a departure from UMNO with the departure from the Premiership looking like an after thought.

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  16. well old fart, re your "Can we hope for a party like Keadilan ..... which is neither racial or regional?", what about PR's problem in the formation of the Selangor State Exco?

    Wasn't the ethnic composition (too many Chinese and Indians from DAP and PKR) a major problem for PKR's Khalid Ibrahim?

    He didn't have the guts of his so-called PKR multi-ethnic ideology to say (regardless to whom, as he had been elected by the rakyat and nominated by the PR to be the MB), words to the effect: "We are the PR, we are all Bangsa Malaysia, and Teresa Kok will be my Dep MB!"

    And worse, didn't Penang's Dep CM Fairuz ask UMNO to include PKR in the UMNO-PAS pan-Malay unity talks?

    Hey, pan-Malay unity talks? What happened to PKR multi-ethnic bullsh*t?

    Then, didn't PKR MP-thug Zulkifli Noordin storm the Bar Council's forum recently and threaten it?

    Didn't the Anwar Ibrahim website allowed Baradam Kuppusamy to be labelled as a 'paid whore' by a PKR leader, just because Baradan wrote something unfavourable about Anwar?

    Is this the attitude of a reformasi website? Why hasn't Anwar extended an unreserved apology to Baradan? Instead he beat around the bush and merely said the words were a bit harsh.

    What did he mean by the insulting anti Press freedom slander being a bit harsh?

    Baradan should be ever so glad that PKR isn't in power and Anwar isn't the PM - he would have been ISA-ed, which BTW Anwar supported when he was in UMNO.

    By his disappointing (though not unexpected as far as kaytee is concerned) lack of commitment to real reformasi (f*, how can encouraging frogs be reformed politics?) and press freedom he doesn't deserve to be PM.

    Look, the power/brains/control behind PKR are nothing more than a group of expelled frustrated UMNO people who still wish, if they are allowed, to return to UMNO but who in the meanwhile can't help but continue to practise their old UMNO habits.

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  17. When Anwar Ibrahim was the Dep PM in 1998 he was also a racist he made a comment asking all Chinese to balek Tiong San . In case you do not know the word Tiong San go ask your Chinese friends .Anwar is nothing but the greatest bullshitter in Malaysia .916 came and go without change of govt . Next he has the list but cannot show ! Sent letter to Agong later denying sending the letter ! The loud mouth Tian Chua said they met with PM , but PM said that was the craziest report to come out from AP, next change of dates no longer important . How long you people still want to be conned by him ?? How many empty promises has he made to you ? RPK went to Kamunting for him but he did not go to see RPK in Kamunting during Hari Raya! Still not convinced ! When the racist Ahmad Ismail made that call , all he said was " he is a low class politician " . When Teresa Kok was detained under ISA , he never demanded that Teresa be freed immediately , neither did he accompanied Teresa Kok's family to see her . Did he demanded that RPK be freed when he was enjoying his new found status in Hong Kong recently? Who is to be blamed for the sodomy case ! HIMSELF !! If he had not hired Saiful when told that Saiful was a UMNO mole , if he had not promoted Saiful super fast , if he had not taken Saiful with him on his overseas trip , if only he could control his urges , he would not have been caught in this shameful scenario . Want some more ? What about the bull that he was poison with arsenic when in prison ? What about the bull that someone wanted to assasinate him ? What about the bull that he took cover at the Turkish embassy ? Please go and read the article by RPK " The Cult Called PKR "

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