Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Kit Siang brands Zahid Hamidi ‘intellectual lightweight’, casts doubt on Cabinet’s calibre

Kit Siang brands Zahid Hamidi ‘intellectual lightweight’, casts doubt on Cabinet’s calibre

May 28, 2013
KUALA LUMPUR, May 28 — The DAP’s Lim Kit Siang cast doubt on the Najib administration’s ability to push forward development or even bring about national reconciliation to a divided country after the divisive May 5 polls with a Cabinet of dubious credibility and intellect.

Singling out Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi (picture), the opposition lawmaker branded the new home minister an “intellectual lightweight” and gullible for believing in his party’s propaganda that the DAP had spent RM1 billion over the past six years to cultivate a “Red Bean Army” with the aim of toppling the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) government from power.

“Zahid must be nuts to believe such rubbish but he is giving daily credence to such lies about the DAP’s ‘Red Bean Army’ of paid 3,000 cybertroopers as in today’s Utusan Malaysia,” Lim said in a statement, referring to the Umno-owned Malay broadsheet’s news report.

Utusan Malaysia and several other establishment-controlled media have been running near daily reports citing unnamed sources who claim the DAP was mounting the large-scale and expensive cyber campaign to “demonise” Ahmad Zahid and Umno, which the opposition party has repeatedly denied, stressing it lacks sufficient funds to carry it out.

According to the DAP veteran, the party would have had to pay an average of RM5,000 a month each to the 3,000 cybertroopers in the so-called “Red Bean Army”, which would total a whopping RM180 million a year and RM1.08 billion for the entire six years since the programme allegedly started if the news proved true.

Lim noted the news about the concocted “Red Bean Army” had cropped up before May 5 in the English-language New Straits Times and remained a staple feature in several other mainstream newspapers since, despite the lack of evidence to back their allegations.

In the Utusan report today, Ahmad Zahid was cited as saying the DAP’s continued condemnation by its “Red Bean Army” testified to the party’s failure to sweep Putrajaya in the recent elections.

“With such senior Cabinet ministers and Umno leaders like Zahid exposing himself as an intellectual lightweight who could be so gullible as to believe the lies churned out by the Umno/BN ‘war room’ strategists and propagandists, what confidence could Malaysians have in the calibre, quality and excellence of the Najib Cabinet to promote genuine national transformation, to effect a national reconciliation or take the country to a higher level of development?” Lim asked.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had called for “national reconciliation” in his victory speech after returning BN to its 55-year unbroken record in power on May 5, in an acknowledgement of the results of a polarised nation.

However, he also alluded to a “Chinese tsunami” as being responsible for the BN’s weaker results compared to Election 2008, though analysts have said the results pointed more to an urban-rural divide than a racial split.

Election 2013 saw the BN returned to power with 133 federal seats to PR’s 89 seats despite losing the popular vote by scoring just 48 per cent to PR’s 51 per cent.

The opposition Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders have maintained that the polls were fraught with irregularities, starting from the use of an indelible ink that was not indelible to discrepancies in the voter roll and outright cheating on Polling Day itself through the alleged use of phantom voters and electricity blackouts.

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