MCA was formed on 27 Feb 1949. So this year in 2013, it is 64 years old.
The party held an early celebration of its birthday two days ago last Saturday (photo below).
MCA was established in 1949 to meet the following objectives:
- promote and maintain better relationships among the various races in Malaya,
- safeguard the interest and welfare of the Chinese socially, economically and politically through legal and constitutional means,
- maintain law and order so that Malaya will achieve peaceful and orderly progress
Source: Tan Cheng Lock papers (National Archives)
A piece of trivia: In March 1958, Dr Lim Chong Eu defeated the 75-year-old Tun Tan Cheng Lock, the MCA founder, for the party presidency.
Another factoid: Tun Tan Siew Sin – Cheng Lock’s son – was a long-serving Finance Minister from 1959 to 1974, the year the BN was created.
So how has MCA fared?
In the first federal election held in August 1955, many of the 15 MCA candidates stood in predominantly Malay areas against Malay opponents and won with handsome majorities.
MIC had earlier teamed up with MCA and Umno in April of the same year to form the Alliance coalition.
Among the MCA’s early successes was the acquisition of citizenship for the Chinese. In 1950, there were about 3,275,000 federal citizens, of whom some 730,000 were non-Malays.
In 1953, an estimated 4,139,000 persons acquired Malayan citizenship by operation of law, with Chinese making up 1,157,000 of the total.
The number of non-Malays who acquired citizenship through registration – the “one million” figure recently cited by Dr M in his comment on the ongoing Sabah RCI – is tabulated in the table below.
Concerning the MCA’s primary objective as stated at the time of its birth, i.e. “to promote and maintain better relationships among the various races” in the country, how well do you think the party has done?
We might also want take our measure based on the performance of Suara MCA aka The Star.
Chinese dead set against Umno
Raja Petra wrote in his column yesterday:
“The Chinese have made it very clear that they are going to vote ABU — anything but Umno. The Indians, to a certain extent, have said the same thing, although not as high a percentage as the Chinese. In the last general election, MCA, MIC, Gerakan and PPP won a total of only 20 seats (PPP zero) out of 222 Parliamentary seats. That was less than 10%.
This time around, they may be reduced to just 10 seats in total, or less than 5% of the seats in Parliament. Never mind what Barisan Nasional, Umno or Najib does, this is not going to change things one bit. MIC, Gerakan and PPP are going to get totally wiped out while MCA may be reduced to just 10 seats.
This means they need to depend on just Umno and the East Malaysian members of Barisan Nasional to stay in power. Even then they may be able to do so with only 110-120 seats.
Hence Umno can forget about the non-Umno parties in West Malaysia (MCA, MIC, Gerakan and PPP). Whatever they say and do is not going to save the day. The only thing that can save Umno would be the Malay votes — that determine roughly two-thirds of the seats in West Malaysia.
And that is why what they are doing/saying is not to win the hearts and mind of the Chinese and Indian voters. It is too late to win the hearts and minds of the Chinese and Indian voters. They need to win the hearts and minds of the Malay voters. And to do that they need to do and say what they are currently doing and saying.
While this may upset the Chinese and Indians, who are not going to vote for Umno anyway, it pacifies the Malays. And it is the Malays they want to pacify, not the Chinese and Indians, who have made it very clear they are not going to vote Barisan Nasional or Umno come hell or high water.”
Why the MCA destructive behaviour?
Concerning the second objective of MCA which is “to safeguard the interest and welfare of the Chinese socially, economically and politically”, what are the thoughts really crossing the MCA’s mind now?
How does one explain The Scissors snipping and snipping and snipping away at the BN ever since the 2008 tsunami? Why does the MCA newspaper seem to favour its rival? (Refer Starwatch.)
I don’t think Chua Soi Lek was joking when he implied that Ong Tee Keat would jump ship.
More recently, Stanley Koh the former head of the MCA research unit, wrote: “It is well known in MCA circles that hordes of members have deserted the party without handing in their resignations”.
MCA ex-vice president Jimmy Chua Jui Meng was reported as saying more or less the same thing, which is that although the MCA members haven’t handed in their resignations as yet but many have already signed up with the opposition parties.
Chua Jui Meng was quoted as saying, “I can tell you, the exodus is real, it is huge and the bulk of it will take place soon after GE-13.”
It would appear that there is a method behind The Star freakiness. This explanation would certainly make sense of the paper’s covert support for the DAP 2.0 politicians.