|Wong Choon Mei|
KUALA LUMPUR, March 12: PAS leaders have called on Perkasa chairman Ibrahim Ali to clarify a news report that he had worked for Chinese gambling king Vincent Tan, who has become the latest Malaysian to join the Forbes’ list of billionaires.
“If this report is true, then Ibrahim Ali must explain to Perkasa members, in fact to all Malays, why he keeps harping on the Chinese overtaking the country and yet quietly, he works for them,” PAS central committee member Dr Syed Azman told Harakahdaily.
“What is this if it is not double standards and hypocrisy? He is going to give Malays a bad name if he continues to play his racist card and Umno continues to sanction him.”
On Friday, new portal Malaysia Today splashed out a 2003 annual report of manufacturing firm Dunham-Bush Malaysia, which was then controlled by Vincent and his brother Danny.
In the annual report, Ibrahim is listed as an independent non-executive director and also a member of the firm’s audit committee.
Slamming tycoons like Vincent
Of late, Ibrahim has ruffled racial feathers more than any other political personality. He has denied being a racist, yet in the next breath, he has slammed the non-Malays for demanding equal rights.
He has also warned his community that Malaysia was in danger of being controlled by the other ethnic groups in particular the Malaysian Chinese.
“Look at how Vincent Tan became successful - he took over the privatisation of Berjaya-Toto," Ibrahim said in a recent press interview.
"The Genting group succeeded because of its monopoly on gambling. Ananda Krishnan rose to the fore because of his monopoly over Astro and the Maxis 012 license
“Looking at what they got, is it not a form of assistance, 'affirmative action' for the Chinese taukes? How can we compare what they got with the two sen small contracts given to the Malays?”
Praising the NEP
However, what Ibrahim did not say about the affirmative action plans in the New Economic Policy is that they have actually done very little to spread wealth amongst the Malays, particularly those in the rural areas.
Instead, the NEP, which originally aimed to eradicate poverty and help backward groups get a toehold in the economy, has been severely abused through the decades by Umno leaders.
In the name of protecting the Malays, Umno’s elite leadership granted huge economic largess and government contracts to unscrupulous cronies, resulting in widespread and endemic corruption.
“The NEP benefits only the Umnoputras and not the ordinary folk. This is something the Malays themselves are very well aware of,” PAS vice president Mahfuz Omar said.
“So Ibrahim should stop playing the race card as if no one can see through his tactics. In fact, everyone knows of his connection to Umno stalwarts like Mahathir Mohamad and Prime Minister Najib Razak. He should stop taking Malaysians, especially the Malays, for fools.