KUALA LUMPUR: Every Barisan Nasional component party should have an equal voice to raise issues affecting the people to ensure it is the coalition of choice, Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said.
The MCA president said the people always came first, pointing out that Barisan had to articulate the hopes, fears, expectations and frustrations of the various communities in the country.
As such, he said, each component party must be accorded full respect on the basis of power sharing.
“There should not be any big brother or small brother within the coalition. We are working towards the same cause and purpose. We are equals,” said Dr Chua at the Barisan convention here yesterday.
Describing the convention as “most crucial”, particularly with the buzz of an impending general election getting louder, Dr Chua noted that Barisan must not be seen as merely collaborating during elections, adding that there must be genuine power sharing at all times.
He said there was a need for Barisan parties to work as equal partners and that decisions pertaining to policies should not be announced at the Umno general assembly or at its supreme council meetings, which was not equivalent to Cabinet status.
Dr Chua also expressed concern over the public delivery system which very often did not reflect the thinking of the Barisan government, calling on the Government to address such weaknesses.
“We have to accept reality and weaknesses in our system and act accordingly to improve on it. We can no longer live in denial,” he said.
After the convention, Dr Chua said component parties reached a consensus that no party should favour a particular race but should give equal treatment to all.
“No political party should take care only its own race, it should be for all,” he said, adding that the atmosphere at the closed-door event was encouraging and in high spirits.
THE STAR (Monday December 6, 2010)