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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

MCA, DAP flay BTN, demand punishment for ‘racist’ official

Lim wants the BTN official punished. — File pic
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 28 — The DAP and MCA demanded the immediate punishment of a National Civics Bureau (BTN) official today for making racist remarks during a Puteri Umno function yesterday.

Lim Kit Siang from the DAP also pushed for BTN to be dissolved in the wake of the comments made by the bureau’s deputy director Hamim Husain.

Hamim had yesterday referred to the Chinese and Indian community as “Si Mata Sepet” and “Si Botol” respectively when asking Puteri Umno members to approach the non-Malays for votes.

“The ‘si mata sepet’ that has never gone to a mosque or surau only has one vote. The ‘si botol’ that only knows how to go up to Batu Caves up and down only has one vote,” Hamim told the closed-door gathering.

The BTN, a state agency charged with running courses on patriotism for civil servants and undergraduates, came under fire last year for promoting racism.

Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration had promised a revamp of BTN’s courses following a widespread public outcry.

Lim said today that the onus was on the Cabinet take action against Hamim

He also challenged the Cabinet to dissolve the entire bureau which he claimed promoted “extremism”.

“The Cabinet is meeting tomorrow. It must act or be exposed for its irrelevance or impotence,” said Lim in a statement today.

He also claimed that the manner in which the BTN controversy was being handled was in stark contrast with Najib’s remarks at the UN General Assembly yesterday where he pushed for moderation to be practised between all major religions and races in the world.

“Borrowing Najib’s analogy in the UN yesterday, the real issue in Malaysia is not between Malays and non-Malays or Muslims and non-Muslims but between the moderates and extremists.

“Would the Cabinet dare to rise up to the challenge tomorrow and answer this national call?” asked Lim.

Separately, MCA central committee member Loh Seng Kok also expressed outrage over Hamim’s remarks and urged the Public Service Department to take appropriate action.

Loh also suggested that the police charge Hamim under the Sedition Act for his remarks.

“It is time to put a halt to the arrogance and intolerance of bigots,” said Loh in a statement earlier today.

He said that it was high time the government overhauled the BTN, given that there had been many reports alleging that the bureau’s courses promoted “ethnic supremacy” and racism.

“The Kursus BTN should produce civil servants with a global outlook and a 1 Malaysia mindset of moderation, mutual respect, and not extremists stuck in racial parochialism,” added Loh.

courtesy of Malaysian Insider

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