DAP's failure to protest against Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad's ambition to embark on another national car project shows that the party cannot check the executive, MCA deputy president Wee Ka Siong said.
Wee cited statements by DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng as well as central committee members Ong Kian Ming and Liew Chin Tong, who are all now part of the executive, which supported the project and he accused the trio of now becoming the prime minister's “make-up artists".
"It is clear that DAP (leaders) are only intent on securing their positions for their personal interest and will not voice out.
“Their representatives in cabinet dare not provide check-and-balance to the prime minister.
"They are only capable of issuing statements to agree with and praise the prime minister. Is this the 'check-and-balance' that (the public) wants?" Wee asked in a statement today.
Umno information chief Shamsul Anuar Nasarah had issued a similar statement, accusing the DAP of being a "pak turut" (lackey) and a "toothless lion" for failing to protest against the prime minister's decision to maintain the Official Secrets Act 1972.
Wee said DAP parliamentary leader Lim Kit Siang had repeatedly accused the BN of failing to instil internal check-and-balance, but the latter's party was now ignoring the "majority of Malaysians who are against the third national car project”.
"If DAP cannot play a check-and-balance role, at least they should state their stand or distance themselves from the topic. Instead, DAP failed to do so despite having a lot of MPs.
"They not only failed to protect the rakyat's interest, they also supported the project," said Wee.
Mahathir urged to rethink the proposal
He urged Mahathir to rethink the proposal and instead look towards making Malaysia a regional e-commerce hub.
"Why are we focusing only one sector which (many) predict will bring gloom to Malaysians?
“Don't be trapped in the past. Open your mind. Try something new. Create new wealth and help improve the welfare of the people," Wee said.
Details about Mahathir's automotive industry vision have not been properly fleshed out, but the prime minister has indicated that he hoped the third national car project would involve neighbouring countries.
In an exclusive interview with Malaysiakini last month, Mahathir said the project would help Malaysia improve in terms of engineering capabilities.
He argued that protectionism for this industry was necessary at the early stages and that this was done in all car manufacturing countries.