Umno and Umno Youth proven to be incapable

969– of change, ending all hopes of a successful implementation of the “New Economic Model”

Ever since I had first suggested certain reforms to the Selangor state economic policies to create a more business-friendly environment to attract more investors as well as to become more equitable to the poor and less fortunate in the state, I’ve come under daily attacks by Umno leaders as well as their mouthpiece, Utusan Malaysia.

The attacks have culminated in all 22 Umno Youth divisions in Selangor filing police reports against me yesterday, charging that my suggestion was “dangerous, sensitive and provocative while inciting hatred and dissatisfaction against government policies” and of course, “threatening public order and peace”.

The suggestion, one of many proposed, which triggered the uproar among the Umno leaders was to abolish bumiputera discounts for luxury property purchase, and that savings from such a move be better utilised for corporate social responsibility programmes for the poor.

The Prime Minister himself has proposed in the New Economic Model (NEM) as well as the 10th Malaysia Plan (10MP) that affirmative action programmes will be reformed to be “market-friendly and merit-based” and will be focused on the “bottom 40% lower income earners”.

I would have thought that my proposal was completely in line with both the NEM and 10MP proposed by the Government. Why should the Government impose a policy to continue to subsidise those who can already afford a property costing millions of ringgit?

The police report by Umno Youth proves beyond reasonable doubt that Umno and its youth wing, despite the loud reform rhetoric by the wings’ leaders to be inclusive, progressive and focused on the poor, the Party is only interested protecting the interests of those who have benefited lucratively from their connections to Umno.

The Umno President as well as the Umno Youth Chief have been doing the song and dance on how their party’s capable of change and reform, like their slogan in the Hulu Selangor by-elections “BN Mampu Berubah”. However these are proving to be empty rhetoric, for its now demonstrated clearly that Umno leaders are only interested in upholding ‘ketuanan Melayu’, even if it is at the expense of public policy, principles of social and distributive justice as well, as well as the greater needs of the poorer bumiputeras.

The police report by Umno Youth is completely frivilous and childish, and the party that is really “dangerous and provocative” is Umno itself.

I will not be threatened by the report for making positive suggestions to improve both the economy of the state as well as the welfare of the poor. I strongly believe that the majority of the population, including the majority of bumiputera community will understand and support the proposals to promote greater equity for bumiputera and Malaysians.

* Tony Pua Kiam Wee, DAP National Publicity Secretary & MP for Petaling Jaya Utara