PETALING JAYA: Hindraf has claimed that Prime Minister Najib Razak did not deliver his side of an agreement to form a special unit for the upliftment of Indians out of fear of side-lining the MIC.
Its chairman P Waythamoorthy today said Najib, who is Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman, was reluctant to assign the unit to be headed by Hindraf with funds coming from the prime minister’s office, as had been agreed under a memorandum of understanding (MoU) between Hindraf and BN.
“At one point he said he was worried of MIC as they have been loyal to the BN,” Waytha said in a statement.
“I was also told several Umno ministers were also against the implementation of the MoU with Hindraf as they are unable to forget the damage Hindraf caused to Umno post-2007,” he said.
He said Najib and his cabinet had held a series of meetings with Hindraf in 2013, under the pretext of working together with the organisation as Indians had lost hope and faith in the BN administration that included the MIC.
Najib assured Hindraf that he would fulfil its blueprint for Indians and agreed to publicly sign the MoU, he added.
“The unit was exclusively requested as Hindraf does not trust MIC or anyone else to be able to deliver those promises and hence I was made a deputy minister after the general election (on May 5, 2013),” he said.
On April 18, 2013, Waytha had signed the MoU with BN secretary-general Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor, witnessed by Najib. He was later appointed senator and a deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department.
He however tendered his resignation from all positions in the government and the Senate, effective Feb 10, 2014, citing the BN government’s failure to deliver the promises of the MoU.
On March 31 this year, Najib announced the launch of a new blueprint during an official visit to India in an entourage that included MIC leaders.
Waytha criticised the planned launch on April 23 as an attempt to “hoodwink and create a false impression of the government’s concerns for Indians” in light of the upcoming 14th General Election (GE14) due next year.
“You can try your luck with the new blueprint gimmick,” he said, adding that Hindraf will counter BN in the next election to expose its “janji manis” (sweet promises) which turned out to be “janji kosong” (empty promises).
He said Najib, together with Umno and MIC ministers, had “cheated” Indians with their ‘nambikei’ (‘trust’ in Tamil) slogan.
“Your public apology to the Indians for their four decades of neglect under BN on April 18, 2013 is still fresh in the minds of Indians,” he said.
Waytha also said Hindraf’s support for BN in the last election had led to the coalition winning at least 12 parliamentary seats, while preventing the “downfall” of Negeri Sembilan and Perak.
“Hindraf worked hard to deliver the Indian votes in the earnest belief of finding a permanent and comprehensive solution to the problems faced by the downtrodden,” he said.
He added that Indian voters are now crucial in 63 parliamentary seats as the Malays are divided in their support for five parties – Umno, PKR, Amanah, PAS and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM).