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Why bring up May 13, Bersatu leader asks Kit Siang

Dr Afif Bahardin says Malaysians are still going about in safety and peace.

Nur Hasliza Mohd Salleh
2 minute read
Deputy Shah Alam Bersatu chief Dr Afif Bahardin.
Deputy Shah Alam Bersatu chief Dr Afif Bahardin.

A Bersatu leader has hit out at DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang, questioning the motive for his recent statement that Malaysia is heading towards racial riots such as those that took place on May 13, 1969. 

Dr Afif Bahardin, Bersatu's deputy Shah Alam chief, said that as a Malaysian, he still felt safe and free to move about without any threat when in the company of other races. 

He said he saw the same of others, as the Chinese could enjoy evening drinks at restaurants, the Indians enjoyed their roti canai at eateries, and the Malays bought fruit at nearby stalls in safety and peace. 

"May 13 has never arisen," he said. "Why does Kit Siang say such things? Why bring this up ahead of elections?" he said at a ceramah in Shah Alam last night.

Kit Siang said yesterday that the country was moving towards racial riots like the incident in 1969, in a statement responding to Bersatu secretary-general Hamzah Zainudin who had condemned the arrest and prosecution of Kedah Menteri Besar Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor.

"After 54 years, Malaysia is teetering on the edge of another May 13, 1969 riot.
"Will all political parties and candidates in the forthcoming six state polls on Aug 12 declare that they do not want a recurrence of the May 13, 1969 riot in Malaysia and reaffirm the relevance of the Rukun Negara nation-building principles for a plural Malaysia?" he asked.

Afif also hit out at Kit Siang's son, Lim Guan Eng, over his remarks on the restriction of rights for non-Muslims in the event of a change of government in Penang. 

He said the DAP chairman had yet to apologise, adding that there had never been an incident in which a house of worship was torn down because of political and religious sentiments. 

He said this had only ever happened due to administrative and land management issues, and not only in certain states. 

"This is the worst racist statement ever during this state election," he said, claiming that this was not the first time Guan Eng had issued statements in Mandarin and Hokkien "to incite the Chinese". 

"This is a racist politician," he said. "People like this should not live in Malaysia and disturb our peace. 

"I want to ask Saifuddin Nasution Ismail, Anwar Ibrahim and the attorney-general why Guan Eng has not yet been charged in court. Why the double standards?"