Monday, April 25, 2011

Muhyiddin raps MCA for 'boycott Utusan' call

Deputy Prime Minister Muyhiddin Yassin today defended Utusan Malaysia as a Malay voice and said it was improper of the MCA to boycott the Umno-owned Malay daily.

He said Utusan has been the voice of the Malays and Malaysians in conveying the people's views on various issues.

NONEThis, said Muhyiddin, who is also Umno deputy president, was never meant to damage national unity.

"We have to remain rational. I don't know why MCA wants to do this, as I was not in Malaysia then.

"Is it because MCA is worried that what was reported in Utusan can spark a riot?" Muhyiddin said, adding that Utusan only reported what the Malays felt.

He was responding to MCA's call to the people to boycott the Malay daily for calling for a '1Melayu, 1Bumi' movement instead of Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak's 1Malaysia campaign.

Muyhiddin told reporters after launching the Kuala Lumpur international book fair that it was improper of the MCA to call for the boycott of Utusan.

"I don't think it is proper for us to call for people not to read Utusan. What is it so afraid of?" Muhyiddin asked.
He added that Utusan and other media have the right to report what they wanted to report, but the media could not break certain limits.

“I'm sure other media also have their pro and cons, but we can't stop certain media like Utusan from reporting what it wants to report

“But there are limits. The first thing is the law, the second thing is (you) cannot touch on the issues that can be deemed as racial and sensitive, ” Muhyiddin said.

'Boycott won't be effective'

The calls to boycott Utusan, he said would not succeed and the Malay daily would continue with its reporting job.

“To read the paper or not is an individual decision, if you want to (boycott), do lah, but it will not be effective at all.

“The more you ask people to boycott, the more people will want to read, so why? Are you afraid of this?” he asked.

NONEHowever, Muhyiddin skirted the question whether he supported the '1Melayu, 1Bumi' movement.

The calls for '1Melayu, 1Bumi' movement, he said, were a natural response after certain parties saw the voting trend in Sarawak state election, where most of the Chinese voted for opposition.

“This is their right to do, but we as a government cannot say 'do lah', or else we will have '1India', '1Chinese', '1Bengali', and '1Mat Salleh' in the future,” he said.

“To me, it is a feeling of worry and a reaction to the latest political trend, which brings the Chinese out of mainstream politics.”

He also warned the Chinese dailies not to manipulate his statement, or they would have to face the music.

Utusan assistant editor-in-chief Zaini Hassan, in his 'Cuit' column on April 20, said the DAP had managed to unite the Chinese politically and, in his opinion, the Malays should launch the "1Melayu, 1Bumi" unity movement.

Last Friday, Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak said the government had nothing to do with the '1Melayu, 1Bumi' movement proposed by Utusan.
However, MCA deputy publicity chief Loh Seng Kok urged Malaysians to boycott Utusan, saying the daily's call for '1Melayu, 1Bumi' movement was legitimising racial discrimination.
LKS: Voice of Malays, or of Muhyiddin?
Adding to the debate today, DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang rubbished Muhyiddin's claim of Utusan as being the representative of Malaysians.
sarawak election miri dap ceramah 110411 lim kit siangIt doesn't even qualify to be the voice of the Malays, said the Ipoh Timor parliamentarian, citing the 'nose-dive' in circulation suffered by the daily from 350,000 in 2009 to less than that half the amount in the following year.
"The Utusan Malaysia is not the voice of the Malays as right-thinking and rational Malays like right-thinking and rational Malaysians have been migrating away from Utusan Malaysia, particularly to online media," said Lim in a statement.
If it was representative of anybody, Lim suggested further, it was of the communal views held by Muhyiddin that stand in contrast to Najib's ostensibly inclusive concept of 1Malaysia.
"How can Muhyiddin give endorsement to Utusan Malaysia's call for '1Melayu, 1Bumi' when it is clearly an open affront and repudiation of Najib's 1Malaysia signature policy?

"Or is Najib Prime Minister for 1Malaysia while Muhyiddin is deputy prime minister for 1Melayu? Is Najib's 1Malaysia only meant for non-Malays while Muhyiddin's 1Melayu reserved for Malays?"

Seals : "Con-pusing" statements?

Muhyiddin: Muhyiddin said, adding that Utusan only reported what the Malays felt.

Mr PM : Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak said today the government had nothing to do with the '1Melayu, 1Bumi' movement proposed in a Utusan Malaysia newspaper report.

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