Someone hides behind an anonymous name to criticise me for misleading the public on the history of MCA. The writer shows a serious lack of knowledge and understanding of the role of MCA in the pre-Independence era. Not only was MCA was a political tool of the British colonial power, other Alliance parties like Umno and MIC were also political tools of the British.
The British made use of MCA, Umno and MIC to fight the Malay Left and the Malayan Communist Party in order to protect its economic interests in the then Malaya. The Chinese were confined to various Chinese new villages under the Briggs' plan to curb the influence of the communist party. MCA was then granted a licence to run the million-dollar lottery scheme by the British authority to make easy money from the Chinese community. In return, the MCA had to use part of the profit to win the hearts of the Chinese in the new villages. This strategy worked well to serve the interests of the British master during the pre-Independence days.
When the time has come to give independence to Malaya, the British kept its promise by working only with Umno, MCA and MIC. On the other hand, the real independence fighters, including some prominent Malay Left leaders, were arrested and locked up in prisons. And the war against the MCP continued with greater intensity.
But true leader like Tan Cheng Lock were sidelined by other MCA and Umno leaders in the run up to the independence negotiations. Cheng Lock had promised the Chinese community to present the general demands of the Chinese community to the British. But he was barred from attending the final round of talks in London. The MCA was represented by HS Lee and Tahir Tan Tong Hai.
According to the late Tunku Abdul Rahman (in one of his writings), Tan Tong Hai threw the entire general demands document into a wastepaper basket in a London hotel room instead of bringing it up at the negotiation table. That's the reason why I often tell the young people that the betrayal of MCA could be traced back to its inception. As a result of this unforgivable sell-out, Chinese Malaysians were treated like second-class citizens in our land. The Chinese were stuck with the 'non-bumiputera' label thanks to MCA.
It's people like Leong Yew Koh who instigated Tunku to strip the citizenship and teaching licence of foremost Chinese education pioneer Lim Lian Geok. Check with Loot Ting Yee. He is one of the mother-tongue education pioneers who can verify my story. The entire history of MCA is filled with betrayals, crimes and sins. They have failed to preserve and protect the interests and rights of the Chinese community which they have claimed to represent.
Take a closer look at these scandals - the deposit-taking-cooperative scandal, the Chang Min Thien Fund scandal, the Aik Hua Holdings scandal, the MCA JE Fund scandal, it's a never-ending list. And guess what? Most of the victims of these scandals were MCA members and supporters. Mind you, it was MCA leaders that instigated the closure of the original Bai Xiao (SJKC Damansara ) in Petaling Jaya. It was also the efforts of SOS Damansara Action Committee and the pressure mounted by DAP, DongJiaoZong and the entire Chinese commu/nity that brought about the unprecedented speedy construction of the new SJKC Damansara in Tropicana.
It's a great shame that MCA leaders do not even bother to get accreditation for the certificates, diplomas and degree courses offered by TAR College (TARC). Recently, a young Chinese Malaysian boy's application was rejected by the Royal Malaysian Police simply because the academic qualifications he obtained from the MCA-sponsored TARC were not recognised by both Public Service Department and National Accreditation Board.
Under the current MCA leadership, the Chinese community can only request for a new Chinese primary school when one is 'dead'. And all these years, the allocation of funds for Chinese primary schools remains unfair and unjust; only about 2.4% of the total budget is given to the Chinese stream and about 1% given to the Tamil stream. The rest was all given to the Malay (national-type) primary schools. None of the MCA 'tai kohs' (mainly Chinese-educated) dare to make noise on this subject.
Yes, Lee Kuan Yew was not totally wrong. The Umno-led BN government has been systematically marginalising the Chinese and other non-Malay communities. And what did MCA leaders like Ong Ka Ting and Chan Kong Choy do about it? And why were they keeping so timidly quiet when Umno ultras like Hishammuddin Hussein Onn and Khairy Jamaluddin make all sorts of racist remarks and even waved a keris time and again shamelessly?
The MCA cannot be defended. That's why none of the MCA leaders dared to show up for a debate with us at Machap. And for the same reason, none of them have the courage to rebut me on all the historical facts I raised in my book entitled Coward? Culprit? Accomplice? The role of MCA in the Chinese Community.
The writer is a member of DAP's central executive committee.