KUALA LUMPUR: There are a small number of Chinese and some Indians who have become victims of perception and trapped in the lies of the opposition, says Najib Razak.
The Umno president and prime minister said Umno was sincere in being a party for all races and not a racist party as alleged by the opposition.
“If Umno were racist, how could we be trusted to lead (Barisan Nasional) component parties representing various races for decades?
“Umno actually is above all, because we have always celebrated diversity in the country and we believe in living together in harmony, being mutually dependent and complementing each other. I repeat, Umno is not anti-Chinese.
“However, it is clear that some from the Chinese and Indian communities have been lured and trapped by the opposition’s lies, and fallen victim to perception,” he said in his presidential address to the 71st Umno annual general assembly at PWTC today.
Najib said Umno was a victim of perception created by the opposition and admitted that the party was almost defeated as a result of the opposition’s ploys.
“Everyone knows Umno is not weak. In fact, we can still win and succeeded in increasing our seats from 79 to 88 in Parliament (in the last general election).
“Nevertheless, because of the opposition’s scheming, we have become a victim of political perception, although we are on the right path and serious in our struggle unlike the dramatics of the opposition,” he said.
In the previous general election, he said the opposition played up fake news to smear the image of Umno and the government.
“They created stories of 40,000 phantom voters imported from Bangladesh. In addition, they alleged the indelible ink (used by the Election Commission to mark voters) faded easily and could be erased.
“What’s more, on the morning of polling for the 13th general election, at about 4am, an opposition leader spread information to deceive the public that they had won the elections.
“How could he say they had won when polling had not yet begun that morning?” he said.