DAP Youth says it will not work together with any political party that practices racist policies, such as the newly-formed Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu), which is doomed to fail in today’s age of progressive politics.
“The racist policies of Bersatu are a product of a bygone political era that should not be in use any more. Such tactics will be rejected by progressive urban voters.
“And rural voters will not be able to differentiate between Bersatu and Umno and they will not vote for a party formed just to bring down Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak,” DAP Youth political education director Chiong Yoke Kong said in a statement last night.
Writing from outside the Sungai Buloh Prison, where the birthday party for jailed de facto PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim was held last night, Chiong condemned Bersatu, the brainchild of former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, as continuing the practice of discrimination based on race and skin colour.
He noted that former deputy prime minister Muhyiddin Yassin, Bersatu’s pro-tem president who filed for the registration of the party on Tuesday with several former Umno leaders, had made it clear that non-Malays can neither vote nor run in party elections and can only be associate members and take up appointed posts.
'Clearly practising racial discrimination'
"Efforts to draft non-Malays as associate members and deny them from voting and running in party elections is a form of racial politics. A party that segregates its members by race and skin colour is clearly practising racial discrimination."
Chiong argued that while Muhyiddin may think that since Bersatu will contest Umno-held seats, it does not need diversity. However, the seemingly racial nature of the party will make it nothing more than an Umno clone and will be rejected by the people who are looking for an alternative.
He reasoned that the momentum needed for change will not occur if the people, especially rural Malay voters, do not vote for Bersatu as they do not have confidence in the party.
"New political parties that continue to practice racial discrimination will not save Malaysia, but instead will only spread racism in the land," Chiong warned.
Bersatu has received brickbats over its single race composition, though advocates defended the party as being made in that image to allow it to face off against Umno in its Malay majority strongholds.