The official opening of the new DUN Building just now by the King was very grand with VIPs throughout Malaysia coming for the function. We Opposition YBs had no seat and it was a very embarrassing official function that I ever attended. It took me more than an hour before I could find a seat.
The new DUN building costing about RM300 million does no reflect a building for a multi-cultured and multi-religious society. The building reflects one culture of one race only. The concept does not also reflect a building based on democracy. Democracy in Malaysia came from Westminister and it should be a blend of Western and Eastern cultures. The west represents where democracy came from and the east should represent our culture.
The Chambers is more or less the size of the Chambers of the old DUN building and this reflects a waste of public fund for the new building. Therefore, there is no much difference at all. I thought that the Chambers could be bigger where in the event that the number of YBs to be increased, seats could be extended to them. I was told that all YBs have been allocated an office each in which I don’t see a need at the moment. This is because it is not the comfort that we are looking for, but, a place where democracy could be heard. There is no point having a Dewan so majestic like this if voices of our YBs could not be heard. For BN YBs, they may feel the luxury of comfort in listening speeches of Ministers, but, to us in the Opposition, what we need is a forum where voices of the people could be heard.
If the BN government which is a big spender government is serious about democracy, then the best thing is to televise all debates “live” during all sittings of the Legislature. This is to ensure that all YBs behave and can deliver their speeches intelligently and debate well. This is also to enable voters to gauge for themselves the performance of their own YBs. In previous DUN sittings, what went on was that while we in the Opposition spoke, the YBs from BN kept on shouting abuses at us. When we shouted at them, they booed at us to sit down and this wasted a lot of time.
I hope in this new DUN there no more to be such misbehavior from YBs. I was quite fed-up of all these antics which made me stood-up and had a shouting match during the last DUN sitting with Dr. George Chan and other YBs when issue on land matters could not be raised by the DAP. I had kept my cool for too long and too patient with their style in stifling our voices.