MCA refutes GAPENA claims
KUALA LUMPUR : Remarks by the Chairman of the Federation of Malaysian National Writers Associations (GAPENA) Prof Datuk Wira Dr Abdul Latiff Abu Bakar that MCA is unpatriotic due to the language used on the banner during the Annual General Meeting smack of ignorance said MCA Publicity Bureau Chairman Senator Datuk Heng Seai Kei today.
“Article 8 of the Federal Constitution expresses that “all persons are equal before the law and entitled to the equal protection of the law.” While Article 152 reads that “the national language shall be the Malay language”, it also allows “the use and study of the language of any other community in the Federation.” Thus, MCA or any organization has right to decide what language maybe used to be printed on the AGM banner.
By stirring up this issue, has he gained anything from it? Furthermore, the banners of PAS are written in Jawi script, but yet we do not see Abdul Latiff kicking up a fuss over this. Why the double standards? It shows Latif disrespects the Federal Constitution in an attempt to create social unrest and affect national unity. Thus, who is not patriotic? “, she said.
Seai Kie said Abdul Latif’s accusations are unfounded as the banner used at the MCA AGM and publicity materials are trilingual, and not merely in Mandarin.
From his uncalled for remarks, it is clear that Abdul Latif is unfamiliar with MCA’s activities and operations. MCA maybe a Chinese-based political party, but is respectful of all languages given Malaysia’s multiracial setting. The MCA AGM or MCA activities employ various languages to ensure that all guests have a more in-depth understanding of MCA activities , she added.
I wish to reiterate that in MCA’s effort to look after the welfare and needs of all participants at the various occasions, different languages or dialects maybe utilized to get the message across. This ensures that information is conveyed effectively and that the public will benefit.
I urge the GAPENA chief have a more open outlook, and remove all narrow race-based mindset in the interpretation of patriotism in order to avoid a becoming a laughing stock and making a mockery of himself or is organization, she said.