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SECOND DEBATE: Chua and Lim deliver key election punches in lively exchange
PETALING JAYA: MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek and DAP secretary- general Lim Guan Eng delivered their key election punches yesterday in a debate held against a backdrop of allegations of misconduct against the latter.
With the intentions of about five million registered Chinese voters a major focus ahead of the 13th general election, the build-up to the debate, their second, had been fiery.
DAP chairman Karpal Singh, for instance, had pushed for a cancellation of the event, calling Dr Chua an “unworthy and improper opponent”, although the latter had said he had the decency of admitting his transgressions.
Lim, in the past few days, has been busy parrying at first, and then denying allegations of his involvement in an extra-marital relationship with a former aide.
At the two-hour debate titled “DAP & MCA: Whose policies benefit the community better?”, Dr Chua said DAP had spread fear among the Chinese, as evidenced by its central allegation of “MCA never did enough for the Chinese”.
The 65-year-old former health minister rolled out his party’s contributions, such as the fight against communists, resettlement of Chinese in new villages, fighting for independence and the right of citizenship for Chinese born after independence, and the setting up of Kolej Tuanku Abdul Rahman (TARC) and Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (Utar).
“MCA has been involved in nation-building from day one. We advocate that all races work together to make this nation work, where there is integration.
“That is why (DAP supremo) Lim Kit Siang and Lim Guan Eng are citizens of Malaysia and the reason why (the latter) is called Lim Guan Eng and not Sukarno Lim.”
Despite DAP’s contention that MCA had not contributed to the Chinese community, Lim, 50, mocked MCA for claiming to speak only for the Chinese.
“This is different from DAP, which wants to speak for all Malaysians.”
Dr Chua shot back, saying DAP had nothing to show for all its rhetoric, while the 1MCA Medical Foundation, for instance, had given out aid to all races.
Organised by the Asian Strategy & Leadership Institute (Asli), the debate saw the two discussing policies on education, healthcare, economic prosperity, community service, national unity, public welfare and poverty alleviation.
Dr Chua said MCA had made education accessible and affordable to all Malaysians because of generous subsidies and the practice of meritocracy, which saw non-Bumiputera groups entering public universities