“Shouldn’t DAP quit the unity gov’t as protest against the latter’s inability to curb Akmal’s rogue behaviour?”

FOR ALL intents and purposes, DAP leaders are passengers in the unity government.

They might have more parliamentary seats than other coalition partners but the strength has not been converted into having a say in the running of the unity government.

DAP who used to vehemently criticise the MCA, MIC and Gerakan in the Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition as stooges to UMNO are no different to these political parties. In some instances, they are worse than these political parties.

In the past one year or so, the DAP leaders have zipped their mouths in not commenting on the performance of the government.

Once the darling of the Chinese and Indians, DAP leaders or sycophants are reticent to talk about the rights of the non-Malays.

Once the proud propounders of multi-racial politics, DAP leaders have come to accept the political hegemony of the Malays in the Pakatan Harapan (PH)-led government of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The struggle for the rights of the non-Malays has given way to rendering food items, Chinese New Villages and others as national heritage symbols.

It is not that these are not important but they should be pursued in the larger context of the rightful place of non-Malays as citizens of the country.

DAP’s deplorable political role can be seen when the Allah inscription on socks issue came to the fore. Being a major component party in the unity government, they could hardly stop UMNO Youth from capitalising on the matter.

DAP reduced to political impotence?

Other than asking the party’s youth wing chief Dr Muhamad Akmal Saleh to tone down his political rhetoric in calling for the boycott of the KK Super Mart, DAP leaders – comfortable in their new-found power and positions – watched helplessly the UMNO Youth’s incessant and dangerous call for the boycott of the 24-hour convenience store chain.

DAP leaders could have threatened to quit the government if the Akmal’s sheer madness was not stopped. But unfortunately, not surprisingly they did not as the temptation of power and positions were too enticing.

The boycott has dovetailed into fire bomb attacks on three KK Super Mart stores in Perak, Kuantan and most recently in Sarawak – all within the spate of one week.

What was the response of the DAP leadership? Nothing.

DAP leaders by being reticent on the matter think that the problem might disappear. Whether the DAP leaders realise or not, its supporters are watching the events as they unfold with disappointment and dismay.

They are shocked that DAP which stood in the forefront of the struggle of non-Malays for decency and dignity has been reduced to political impotence.

DAP leaders might have embraced UMNO in the coalition government but they miserably have no say in the running the government and being heard by UMNO.

In the height of the call for boycott, DAP’s pathetic concerns were dismissed by Akmal as of no consequences at all.

Obviously, DAP and UMNO are not in the position to work together. Why the hypocrisy on the part of DAP to project an image of cordiality with UMNO?

Even if the DAP leaders for opportunistic reasons have a political pact with UMNO, grassroots DAP members are not willing to forgive the latter for the past misdeeds.

The question is: how long is DAP going to stay in the PH-led government under conditions of humiliation and indignity? Wouldn’t it make sense for the party to throw in the towels to take up the abandoned cause of Malaysian Malaysia?

The longer DAP stays in the present government, its relevance will dissipate sooner than later. – April 2, 2024


Former DAP stalwart and Penang chief minister II Prof Ramasamy Palanisamy is chairman of the United Rights of Malaysian Party (Urimai) interim council.

The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia.

Main image credit: Akmal Saleh Facebook

Subscribe and get top news delivered to your Inbox everyday for FREE