Offering a hypothetical scenario to illustrate his point on hudud, MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek says if the two political superpowers come together, the rest will be rendered impotent.
MCA leaders constantly churn out press statements attacking both PAS and their traditional rival DAP over the possible implementation of hudud law, stoking fear in the hearts of the Chinese electorate.
In an exclusive interview with FMT yesterday, MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek explained why this issue was of grave concern.
The veteran politician, who has a string of police reports against him for raising thorny issues, offered a hypothetical scenario of PAS working with Umno in the event Pakatan Rakyat formed the federal government.
“PAS would reach out to Umno and tell them that we want to run this country according to the teachings in the Quran and no Muslim would try to go against it, including Umno MPs.
“Not only PKR and DAP, even MCA would be impotent to do anything [about it]. Because PAS and Umno members combined are more than enough to form the government, let’s be honest about it,” he said.
Asked if PAS would consider courting its traditional rival for the Malay vote-bank at the expense of the Islamic party’s partners in the opposition bloc, Chua did not rule out the possibility.
“In politics, I have learned one thing. The possible becomes impossible and the impossible can become possible,” he stressed.
Responding to another question, the MCA president said PAS was flexing its muscles in Pakatan and pointed to the contradictory statements from the leadership regarding the muzakarah or dialogue with Umno.
“[PAS spiritual leader] Nik Aziz [Nik Mat] says what he wants and [PAS president Abdul] Hadi Awang says what he wants.
“Two weeks ago, Nik Aziz says we should talk with Umno, we have this muzarakah for Muslim
unity but Hadi Awang says ‘no’. Who do you want to believe? Hadi Awang or Nik Aziz?
“Who is telling the truth anyway. Or who is calling the shots? A lot of people in PAS I know say that it is Nik Aziz who calls the shots, not Hadi Awang,” he added.
‘Answer my questions, DAP’
Chua also conceded that MCA was often accused of using the same old propaganda with regard to hudud but denied that it was a scare-tactic.
“We are not frightening the Chinese. We feel that we have an obligation to tell the Chinese the implications of hudud, which many Chinese don’t understand and they think it only affects the Muslims,” he said.
For the past four months, Chua said, he had been raising the same questions but no DAP leader wanted to answer him.
“Number one, could DAP please assure us that when PAS really implements hudud, the non-Muslims would not be affected. Yes or no? Simple as that. Why are you not answering me?
“Number two, the implementation of hudud would have a great negative impact on the social, economic, political, educational [aspects] and the whole social fabric of this country that would affect non-Muslims and Muslims. Why is DAP not answering my questions? Why are you hiding?” he asked.
When pointed out that Pakatan leaders claimed that hudud was not in the common policy framework or the election manifesto dubbed Buku Jingga, he replied: “Yeah, that’s up to the rakyat to believe or not.”
‘I will join Pakatan if…’
In outlining the imperfections of MCA, Chua said there were numerous things which the party aspired to change but was unable to do so due to certain constraints.
“Because this is a multiracial country, [we are unable to push for things] such as removing the quota, preferential treatment for Bumiputeras, that sort of things. It is a whole litany of problems
that I don’t want to repeat again and again which the press likes near election time,” he said.
On the same note, Chua reiterated his challenge to Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim and DAP that if they could fix these entrenched problems, he would join Pakatan.
“If Anwar and DAP says that if they come to power, they would want to review the special rights of the Malays and the quota system, I, Chua Soi Lek, would resign from MCA and join them,” he said.
“Don’t hide under the screen and keep on whacking people and never make your stand clear. To me it’s unfair politics. Just say it openly tomorrow, that [if] we win the election, we would review the Bumiputera policy, review the special privileges of the Malays, say it!
“Don’t imply that DAP is going to do it but MCA is not doing it and dare not even articulate.
“I, today, as the president articulate it. Tell me openly that you dare to do it. If you do it, then I would do my part [resign and join Pakatan],” he stressed.