The Malaysian Chinese Association ("MCA") 1958 membership card
Introduction : History of Party Formation
The history of the Malaysian Chinese community can be traced to the 19th century or even earlier. In the 1940s, Malaya, as the country was known then, was a British colony. Because of the communist armed insurrection in the peninsula, the British Government declared a state of emergency and military rule in 1948.
The Chinese residents, sandwiched between the communists and the British Government, suffered miseries and hardships as the communists, who were mostly ethnic Chinese, waged a guerilla war against the British.
A large number of Chinese were detained by the colonial Government, many were deported to China and some were shot dead by the soldiers.
To isolate the rural Chinese community from the guerillas, hundreds of thousands of Chinese were evicted from their homes and re-settled in new villages set up by the British Government.
On 27th February, 1949, the Malayan Chinese Association or MCA as it is popularly known, was born out of the need to save the Chinese in Malaya from being repatriated to China. The late Tun Sir Tan Cheng Lock was the key man behind the formation of the MCA.
The British plan to deport the Chinese was halted with the birth of the MCA, which took immediate plans to build houses to help resettle the Chinese in the new villages. The MCA also provided food, medicine and monetary aid for these people. After the resettlement, the MCA also helped in securing electricity and piped water to the new villages. Chinese primary schools and public libraries were built for the people.
The Malaysian Chinese Association ("MCA" in brief) was formed on Feb. 27 with Sir Tun Tan Cheng Lock as the inaugural President; Yong Shook Lin as Honorary Secretary and Khoo Teck Ee as Honorary Treasurer. Other founding leaders included H.S. Lee (political/youth/women sub-committee chairman); Tan Siew Sin (publicity sub-committee chairman) and Leong Chong Leng (social welfare/culture subcommittee chairman). Explaining the reasons for forming the party, Tun Tan said, " The immediate reason for forming our Party was that the Chinese who are loyal to Malaya are made to suffer under the state of emergency. The emergency not only endangered the life of many Chinese, threatening the most basic interests of the Chinese, furthermore it also led others to doubt our traditional loyalty and sincerity to this nation where most of us have considered as our permanent homeland."
From February onwards, MCA operated a welfare lottery to raise funds to help the needy Chinese especially those forced to resettle in the over 600 new villages in the country. The new villagers lived in fear and anxiety and saw no light at the end of the tunnel. MCA helped them to rebuild their homes and used the funds collected from the lottery to solve their daily livelihood problems.On the right is an old advertisement of the MCA lottery.
On December 2, Tun Tan led an MCA delegation to submit a memorandum to the colonial government expressing the dissatisfaction of non-Malays for being neglected in the provisions of the Constitution of the Federation of Malaya.
MCA and UMNO (United Malays National Organisation) formed an Alliance to contest the Kuala Lumpur municipal elections on February 26 and subsequently local elections in 16 other municipalities over the country. The Alliance received overwhelming support and won 94 seats out of the 124 contested. MCA won 24 out of 43 seats contested. The victorious results laid a strong foundation for the tripartite Alliance to be formed later on.
On June 20, the Central Committee ( C.C.) adopted a proposal tabled by the President to alter the nature of the organisation from social welfare to political and MCA formally became a political party from this date and participated actively in the political arena.
MCA fully supported the stand taken by the Chinese educational organisations as expressed in a meeting held in the Kuala Lumpur Chinese Assembly Hall to oppose the Barns Report on Education and the 1952 Education Act. However, the colonialist-controlled Federal Legislative Council still passed the Act on November 21. MCA and the United Chinese School Teachers’ Association and the United Chinese School Committee’s Association formed a Central Committee on Chinese Education which was to become the highest leading body on Chinese education in the country.
MCA-sponsored adult education classes were started in the new villages to provide basic education for the villagers and till the end of year, there were 1,255 such classes with tens of thousands of students.
The colonial government passed the Lottery Act on June 12 disallowing political parties from operating lottery. With the passage of the Act, MCA was compelled to stop operation of the welfare lottery and lost the source of revenue to maintain adult education classes which were subsequently closed down.
The Sino-Malay Alliance and other organisatons held the first National Convention in Kuala Lumpur on August 23 to call on the colonial government to hold general elections early to elect the government which could rightfully represent the people.
The second National Convention was held on October 11 and a resolution was passed calling for self-rule and independence. The Convention expressed dissatisfaction over the proposed number of seats allocated to elected representatives of the people.
An anti-communist self-defense force was formed by the MCA in December with over 70,000 numbers.
A Memorandum on Chinese Education was issued jointly by MCA and the Chinese educationist bodies on March 31 opposing the educational policy of the colonial government. This memorandum was historically significant and had far-reaching implications.
The three-man Alliance delegation went to England to hold talks with the colonial authority in May urging that elected representatives form the majority in the upcoming first elections to the Federal Legislative Council. The three were Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak and T.H.Tan. In the mean time, organisations all over the country echoed the call of the Alliance to hold meetings in support of the Alliance delegation.The colonial government finally conceded to the request and allowed 52 out of 98 members in the Council to be elected by the people. The colonial government would appoint seven members and five of them would be appointed after consultations with the political party whick won the most number of seats.
The government issued the 1954 Education Report at the end of the year and the people opposed it strongly. The Report suggested that pupils of various races should attend the same classes, using the same medium of instruction and textbooks. As this would alter the nature of Chinese education, MCA and the Chinese educationalist bodies opposed it vehemently and called for its abolition.
After the discontinuance of adult classes, MCA started to set up community libraries and by year-end, there were 84 such libraries to cater for the needs of the people.
MCA arranged a meeting between Alliance Chairman Tunku Abdul Rahman and leaders of the Chinese educational bodies on January 12 at the residence of Tun Tan Cheng Lock to discuss issues pertaining to the development of Chinese education. The Chinese educational bodies requested that the Alliance elections manifesto include Chinese language as the second official language of the country. In response, Tunku Abdul Rahman said that the matter was not suitable to discuss at the moment as it would cause a split in the unity of the people to fight for independence. He, however, undertook that the Alliance government would never abolish vernacular languages, culture and educational facilities.
The first general elections were held on July 27 and the Alliance won 51 out of the 52 seats of which MCA had 15 seats.
The first Alliance self-government was formed on August 2 with Tunku Abdul Rahman as the chief minister. MCA was represented by Leong Yew Koh (Health and Social Welfare Minister); H.S. Lee ( Transport Minister); Ong Yook Lin ( Telecommunications and Post Minister) and Too Joon Hin as Assistant Education Minister.
A cabinet committee was formed to examine the educational policy with Education Minister Abdul Razak as its chairman. Its report as released subsequently was called the "Razak Report".
Chief Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman led a government delegation to hold peace talks with Malayan Communist Party leader Chin Peng with the aim of ending the emergency and working to build a new Malaya. Members of the government team included MCA President Tun Tan Cheng Lock, Alliance Secretary-general T.H. Tan, Assistant Education Minister Too Joon Hin. The talks failed as the communists refused to accept the offer from the government.
An Alliance delegation, led by Tunku Abdul Rahman went to the U.K. in January to hold independence talks with the British authority. MCA was represented by H.S. Lee and T.H. Tan. Party President Tun Tan was indisposed and could not attend. After rounds of heated and intense discussions, the British finally promised on February 5 that she would allow, under possible circumstances, Malaya to be independent by August 31, 1957.
The Razak Report on education was released in April. It suggested that Chinese primary schools be included into the national education system and emphasized that all schools should have the same curricula and sit for the same examination. It also said that the ultimate objective was to have Malay as the main medium of instruction for all schools. The Report was strongly opposed by the Chinese community and Chinese educational groups .
The Lord Reid Commission was sent to Malaya in May to assess views and formulate a draft constitution for independent Malaya. Chinese organisations submitted their memoranda asking for equal citizenship and educational rights.
The tripartite Alliance submitted a memorandum to the constitutional survey commission on August 22, representing the official views of the self-rule government.
The Lord Reid Commission released its report and draft constitution on February 20. The Alliance was not happy with the draft and the Chinese community also expressed dissatisfaction over its negligence of Chinese rights. On May 9, an Alliance delegation led by Tunku Abdul Rahman went to England to negotiate on the draft constitution. MCA was represented by Ong Yoke Lin. The negotiations led to mutual consent on a draft constitution for independent Malaya.
Malaya declared independence on August 31 and Tunku Abdul Rahman became her first Prime Minister.
MCA launched a citizenship application movement and within a year, more than one million Chinese residents were given citizenship and enjoyed the rights of every citizen of this country.
Drastic changes occurred in the MCA leadership where in the party elections Dr. Lim Chong Eu defeated Tun Tan Cheng Lock with 89 votes to 67 votes to become the second party president. Too Joon Hin defeated Ong Yoke Lin to become party secretary general and Yong Pang Haw defeated Tan Siew Sin to become the party publicity chief. Tun Tan Cheng Lock later announced his retirement from politics.
MCA organised a pan-Malayan Conference of Chinese Guilds and Associations on April 26 in Ipoh and unanimously passed the "General Demand on Education by The Chinese Community".
Party President Dr. Lim Chong Eu demanded that MCA be allocated 40 out of 104 Parliamentary seats in the coming general elections and also exerted pressure on UMNO on Chinese educational issues. Alliance Chairman and Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman rejected the demands and wanted Dr. Lim to withdraw them. Dr. Lim resigned with his supporters from the party after failing to secure unanimous support from the Central Committee and left for England for a vacation. Dr. Cheah Toon Lock was appointed acting President. (A few years later, Dr. Lim Chong Eu returned to Malaya and formed a new party to fight against the MCA.)
In the first post-independence general elections held in August, MCA contested 32 seats and won 19.
The State of Emergency was lifted throughout the country although the threat from the Communist Party of Malaya still existed.
Education Minister Abdul Talib released the "Talib Educations Report" which shocked the whole Chinese community. They described it as a knife hanging over Chinese education.
Tunku Abdul Rahman proposed the plan for a greater Malaysia at a luncheon talk in Singapore on May 27. MCA gave its full support for the plan.
Parliament passed the 1961 Education Act which provides power for the Education Minister to convert national-type primary school (either Chinese or Tamil ) to national primary school (Malay medium school).
Dr. Cheah Toon Lock declined to re-contest for the post of party President at the MCA assembly held on November 10. Tan Siew Sin, the son of Tun Tan Cheng Lock was unanimously elected as the new President.
Indonesian President Sukarno launched the "Crush Malaysia Movement" and diplomatic relation between the two nations was severed.
Malaysia was formed on September 16 comprising the states in the Malay Peninsula, Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak. Indonesia intensified its confrontation against Malaysia.
The second general elections took place on April 25. Alliance secured a landslide victory. The MCA won 27 out of the 33 seats contested dealing a crushing defeat on Singapore's People's Action Party which tried hard to unseat the MCA. The PAP then urged the Tunku to allow it to join the central government and replace MCA as the party representing Chinese interests. The Tunku rejected the demand and said that UMNO would not accept the PAP.
The Central Committee decided in June that, due to the Constitutional restrictions, the Party was in no position to support the demand of the Chinese community to have Chinese as an official language.
On August 9, Singapore left Malaysia to become an independent nation. In his speech during the debate in Parliament, Party President Tan Siew Sin hoped that there would come a day when the two nations would re-merge. After the separation, the PAP in Malaysia changed its name to the Democratic Action Party (DAP) and continued to split the support of of the Chinese and sabotage the political objective of the MCA to unify the Chinese.
The National Language Action Front raised the issue of language in Chinese signboards. MCA and its Youth wing took up the issue with the Front. The Alliance formed an Action Committee to study and suggest a compromising solution.
MCA Selangor and MCA Youth wing passed resolutions to urge the government to put into practice the promise to have Chinese language for official usage. The resolutions received support of all levels of the community.
On October 14, Tunku Abdul Rahman said that the younger members in the MCA were using the language issue to fight against the veteran members within the Party.
The Central Committee decided on October 19 not to support the suggestion to have Chinese language for official usage but would instead call for wider usage of the language in government notices and circulars so that policies and directives could be easily understood and implemented. The Chinese and Malay communities gave sharply contrasting responses to the decision. The Chinese accused the MCA for being too soft while the Malays described the decision as a manifestation of Chinese chauvinism.
The MCA expelled the deputy chief of its Youth wing, Mr. Sim Mow yu on grounds of party indiscipline.
MCA Youth decided to form a cooperative society which was later named the Koperasi Serbaguna Malaysia (KSM) or Malaysia Multi-Purpose Cooperative Society.
The National Language Act was passed in Parliament on September 1 which designates Malay as the national language and sole official language. The Act also provides that no one shall stop anyone from teaching or using any other languages except for official purposes. Party President Tan Siew Sin described the provisions as a compromise fair to all communities.
Party Central Committee decided on February 3 that the Party would support the proposed Merdeka University suggested by Chinese groups.
On March 23, in the Party Delegates' Conference, a resolution was passed urging the government to speedily set up higher colleges so that graduates from secondary schools could be enrolled into these colleges.
The Malaysia Purpose Cooperative Society was officially launched on June 16 with MCA Youth Head Mr. Lee San Choon as its Chairman and Mr Choo Cheng Wah as its secretary and Oon Seng Lee as Treasurer.
Party Deputy President Tan Sri Khaw Kai Boh submitted a plan to form a higher learning college to Education Minister Khir Johari. The college was later known as the "Tunku Abdul Rahman College". The college was registered on July 14.
Party President Tan Siew Sin said on April 15 that it was difficult for the Party to render support for the setting up of the Merdeka University under the prevailing circumstances. His statement angered the Chinese community as a whole.
The government approved the registration of the Merdeka University as a non-profit company on May 9.(The University and University College Act was not in existence then and one needed only to register as a company in order to set up a higher learning institution). MCA Central Education Committee Chairman Khaw Kai Boh and a few educationists met with the governors of the Merdeka University and decided that both institutions should cooperate closely.
The third general elections were held on May 10. Of the 33 Parliamentary seats contested, MCA only managed to retain 13. MCA also lost control of the Penang State government. This was the most severe setback for the Party since its inception. Two of the MCA cabinet ministers namely Commerce and Industry Minister Dr. Lim Swee Aun and Health Minister Dr. Ng Kam Poh also lost in the elections. The Party Central Committee decided on May 12 that as the Party was rejected in the elections, it declined to join the government but remained in the Alliance.
The following day, racial riots broke out in Kuala Lumpur. The incident was later termed as the May-13 tragedy. The government placed the whole nation under a state of emergency and a National Operations Council (NOC) was formed on May 17 with Tun Razak as its Chairman.
In response to numerous appeals and calls from the Chinese guilds, associations and other representative bodies, MCA reconsidered its earlier decision and rejoined the government on May 20.
Tunku Abdul Rahman retired as Prime Minister on September 22. He was succeeded by Tun Razak. MCA maintained its four ministerial positions in the cabinet but Khaw Kai Boh declined to serve in the government.
In the Party elections, Tun Tan Siew Sin was again re-elected as President with Khaw Kai Boh elected as his Deputy. A new Party Constitution was also adopted in the Assembly which provided for the appointment of the Chairman of Party State Liaison Committee by the President instead of being elected. The provision, in other words, abolished the traditional elections at state level.
MCA absorbed a number of professionals into the Party as "new blood" in a move to improve its image.
Parliamentary democracy was restored on February 2 with the passage of the Constitutional Amendments Bill in Parliament disallowing questioning on four sensitive matters namely: the position of the National Language; special privileges of the Malays; the position of the Rulers and the citizenship status of the non-Malays.
On February 7, a gathering of representatives of Chinese guilds and associations was held. Speaking at the gathering, Party President Tun Tan Siew Sin called on the Chinese to forge strong unity and pledged that he was willing to step down should he be considered a stumbling block to Chinese unity. A Chinese Unity Declaration was passed in the gathering. Similar gatherings were later held in Negeri Sembilan, Perak and Penang.
The Party issued an important and historic declaration entitled " Chinese Unity For The Overall Unity of The Malaysian Peoples " on July 18 listing out the actions and measures taken by the Party to safeguard and protect the constitutional rights of all Chinese Malaysians as enshrined in the Federal Constitution. The declaration was called "7.18 Declaration" in short.
Two key leaders and Members of Parliament of the Democratic Action Party namely Richard Ho and Walter Loh crossed the floor and joined the MCA when Parliament was in session. With this, the number of MCA parliamentarians had increased to 15.
Party Deputy President Tan Sri Khaw Kai Boh passed away on April 17. The Central Committee appointed Lee San Choon to fill the vacated post.
The Education sub-committee of the Party organised a conference with the Chinese educationist groups to discuss issues related to independent Chinese schools. The conference came out with the slogan of "Independent Chinese schools are here to stay and develop".
A Chinese Mental Revolution movement was launched by the Party in October.
The National Front concept slowly took its form early this year with opposition parties like the Parti Islam Malaysia (PAS); the Sarawak United Peoples' Party (SUPP); the Gerakan Rakyat Malaysia (Gerakan); the People's Progressive Party (PPP) joining as members.
MCA "new blood" Dr. Lim Keng Yaik, Alex Lee, Dr. Tan Tiong Hong and Yong Siew Hiong started a rebellous movement which they called "Reformation Movement" to topple the Party leadership. The initial targets were Lee San Choon and Kam Woon Wah but later Tun Tan was also included as a prime target. The revolt leaders were expelled later for breaching party discipline.
A series of Chinese economic seminars were held in various cities in the first quarter of the year focusing on issues of Chinese economic development. Calls were made to urge Chinese to pool their financial resources to venture into modern big enterprises to prepare themselves to meet future challenges and ensure that they maintain the 40% equity participation as guaranteed under the New Economic Policy.
Tun Tan Siew Sin resigned from all posts in the Party and government on April 8 for health reasons.
The Party Central Committee appointed Lee San Choon as the Acting President on April 17. On assuming the position, Lee emphasized that he would work towards unifying the Chinese to build a fair and united nation.
The MCA organized a Chinese Culture Conference in Penang during which a resolution was passed emphasizing that the multiracial culture of the nation must not be based on a monolithic culture.
On May 1, the MCA broke tradition by organising a Labour Day celebration. Acting President Lee San Choon told the crowd at the celebration that MCA will always stand together with the working class.
A few hundred DAP members, led by Serdang stateassemblyman Yap Pian Hon crossed over to the MCA on July 7.
In the fourth general elections held in August, the MCA was allocated 23 Parliamentary seats and won 19 --- a success rate of 82.6%.
Lee San Choon announced a "five major projects" plan to reform the Party.The five which later termed as the First Five Major Projects were:
A new Party Headquarters building;
Raising fund for the Tunku Abdul Rahman College;
Setting up the Multi-Purpose Holdings Sendirian Berhad;
Setting up Malaysian Chinese Cultural Society.
MCA submitted a Memorandum on Education to the government suggesting that the medium of instruction in the Chinese primary schools be extended to secondary level to provide students of various races a better chance to improve and safeguard their mother language. The memorandum also proposed the abolition of certain clauses in the 1961 Education Act to ensure that Chinese schools maintain its characteristics. It further proposed that the Chinese Senior Middle Examination be resumed. The views in the memorandum were not acceptable to the Chinese educationist groups and they submitted a separate memorandum to the government. Party leaders met the groups several times to try and resolve the differences but their efforts were in vain.
The Annual Delegates' Conference passed the Party's five major projects and this decision was described as the turning point in the Party's history.
In October, KSM Secretary Choo Cheng Wah announced that Multi-Purpose Holdings which was one of the Party's five major projects, was approved and registered. ..The name was later changed to Multi-Purpose Holdings Berhad (MPHB) and the primary aim of the company was to lead the Chinese into doing business in the modern way.
MCA organised a conference on squatters and farmers in Ipoh in August and passed a declaration urging the government to open up land for the landless to apply.
Party Headquarters' Executive Secretary Tan Kean Sin was detained by the government on November 3 under the Internal Security Act. He was the first high-ranking official of the Party to be detained since the inception of the Party. He was detained for his alleged involvement in subversive activities in his earlier days in school and not because of his works in MCA.
Construction works on the new Party Headquarters' Building, which is one of the five major projects, commenced in December. Activities to raise funds for the building were carried out throughout the country.
The Malaysian Chinese Cultural Society, another one of the Party projects , was registered and its inauguration ceremony was held in Penang on March 5. Datok Wee Khoon Hock, a doyen in the Chinese cultural community, was elected as its President.
Multi-Purpose Holdings Berhad released its prospectus for public share subscription in May. In the ceremony, Party President Datuk Lee San Choon emphasized that this was one of the major projects to lead the Chinese to actively participate in the commerce and industry sector and to modernize their method of doing business. Tan Sri Lee Loy Seng, a successful business tycoon, was elected as its Chairman and Tan Koon Swan appointed as Managing Director (Operations) with Choo Cheng Wah as Managing Director (Administration). Public response to the share subscription exercise was overwhelming. At the close of application date, it was oversubscribed with a total of 43 million shares of one Ringgit each being applied. The original target was only 30 million shares of one Ringgit each.
In the Party elections in August, Datuk Lee San Choon was re-elected Party President. Incumbent Deputy President Tan Sri Lee Siok Yew did not seek re-election. The post was keenly contested between Tan Sri Chong Hon Ngen and Datuk Michael Chen with the latter emerging victorious.
The Merdeka University issue re-emerged and gained wide publicity in the Chinese press. Convenors of the University launched a nationwide signature campaign to get Chinese guilds and associations to give their full support in an effort to get the Royal Assent for its setting up. On April 12, Party President Datuk Lee San Choon explained that the 1971 University and University College Act specified that Chinese language could not be the medium of instruction in local universities. As such, the porposed University did not comply with the Act which made it impossible for its registration.
On July 5, President Datuk Lee San Choon expressed dissatisfaction over the reducing number of intake of Chinese students in the five local universities. He suggested that the ratio of intake should be 50:50 between Bumiputras and non-Bumiputras.
The fifth general elections were held on July 8 in which MCA won 17 Parliamentary seats out of 28 contested.
The annual delegates' assembly which was held in November passed a resolution not to support the proposed Merdeka University.
Party President Lee San Choon stepped down as Chairman of Koperasi Serbaguna Malaysia in December. Datuk Oon Seng Lee was elected the new Chairman.
MCA leaders were concerned and angry that new intake of Chinese students of the five local universities have increased by only 2%. In Parliament, Tan Koon Swan criticised the Minister of Education for going against his promise given earlier. On June 28, Party President Datuk Lee San Choon led an MCA top-ranking delegation to meet the UMNO leadership led by Prime Minister Datuk Husssein Onn to discuss the matter. It was agreed at the meeting that the ratio of future intake should be 55% for Bumiputra and 45% non-Bumiputra. The formula was later known as the "628 formula".
In the Party elections on September 8, Datuk Michael Chen challenged Datuk Lee San Choon for the post of President. It was the battle royale which saw Datuk Lee convincingly defeating Datuk Chen. Two members of the Party petitioned to the High Court and sought that the Court declare the elections null and void. The petition was rejected.
A Chinese Cultural Seminar organized by the Malaysian Chinese Cultural Society was held in Penang in December.
In the Party elections this time, members responded positively to the call made by Party President that the top six posts be unchallenged. The six top posts were President (Datuk Lee San Choon); Deputy President (Datuk Richard Ho); and four Vice-Presidents ( Datuk Chan Siang Sun; Datuk Mak Hon Kam; Tan Sri Chong Hon Ngien and Datuk Neo Yee Pan).
The new Party Headquarters Building was officially opened by President Datuk Lee San Choon with a grand ceremony. A week-long Chinese Cultural Festival was held in conjunction with the opening which attracted tens of thousands of participants from all walks of life.
MCA launched a Second Five Major Projects, these were:
Koperasi Jaya Diri (KOJADI)
The State Holdings Corporations
The MCA Institute of Cadre Training
The MCA Education Fund
The MCA Cultural Centre
Party President Datuk Lee San Choon accepted a challenge from DAP Secretary General Lim Kit Siang and contested in the Seremban Parliamentary constituency to face DAP National Chairman Dr. Chen Man Hin. Dr. Chen was defeated . MCA also obtained outstanding results elsewhere in this year's elections in which the party won 24 Parliamentary and 28 state seats.
Shortly after the elections, Datuk Richard Ho who did not contest in the general elections resigned as Deputy President and left the Party. The Party Central Committee then nominated Datuk Neo Yee Pan as the acting Deputy President and Tan Koon Swan as the Vice-President.
Datuk Lee San Choon shocked the Party when he announced his resignation as Party President and Transport Minister on March 25. Members from various states came to Kuala Lumpur to persuade him to change his decision. However, he insisted that his decision was final. The Central Committee, after accepting his resignation with regret, appointed Dr. Neo Yee Pan as the acting President and Datuk Mak Hon Kam as the acting Deputy President. Dr. Neo announced an "Eight-Point Plan & Eight Committees" to replace the Party's Ten Major Projects.
The issue of phantom members was raised by many grassroots members of the Party. They alleged that there was a syndicate in the Party which used false personal particulars to "create" new Party members. They wanted the central leadership to take immediate action to stop this practice. However, the Party's Acting President Dr. Neo Yee Pan refused to take any action. On March 17, a Central Committee meeting was held to discuss this issue. During the meeting, supporters aligned to Dr. Neo and Tan Koon Swan were engaged in heated arguments over the issue. The group aligned to Tan wanted a special panel to be formed to handle the matter but Dr. Neo turned down the request. After a marathon argument, Tan Koon Swan submitted a joint petition signed by 13 Central Committee members requesting to hold an extraordinary general meeting to resolve the issue. The petition created chaos in the meeting which was abruptly adjourned.
Two days later, on March 19, at 10.00 a.m., Dr. Neo Yee Pan announced that he, in his capacity as Acting President, was to strip Tan Koon Swan and Datuk Lee Kim Sai of their posts as MCA Wilayah Persekutuan Liaison Chairman and Selangor Liaison Chairman respectively.
In the afternoon on the same day, Datuk Mak Hon Kam, in his capacity as the Party's Disciplinary Committee Chairman, announced the immediate expulsion of 14 leaders and members from the party including Tan Koon Swan (Vice-president); Datuk Lee Kim Sai (Vice-president/MCA Youth Chairman); Dr. Ling Liong Sik (C.C. member); Datuk Kee Yong Wee (C.C. member); Wong Choon Wing (Organising Secretary of Wilayah Persekutuan Liaison Committee) and Wong Mook Leong (C.C. member). The announcement shocked not only the whole Party but the whole Chinese community.
Members from throughout the country wanted the Party to retract the expulsion orders. Within 48 hours after the expulsion, more than 1499 delegates sent in a joint petition calling for an EGM to be held to nullify the expulsion orders and to appoint a special committee to probe and handle the phantom membership issue.
However, this was ignored by the incumbent leadership which refused to hold the EGM forcing the Tan faction to bring the issue to court.. The Party felt into a state of near anarchy during the period and the incumbent leadership was faced with criticisms from all corners.
The Party crisis ended only on November 24, 1985 when, under the efforts of an ad-hoc Committee, a delegates' meeting was held and it successfully elected a new leadership. However, the image of the Party had already been dented.
The new leadership was led by Tan Koon Swan as the President and Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik as the Deputy President. The four elected Vice-presidents were Datuk Chan Siang Sun; Chan Kit Chee; Datuk Tan Peng Khoon and Datuk Lee Kim Sai. Datuk Kee Yong Wee and Ms. Teng Gaik Kwan were elected head of the MCA Youth and Wanita respectively. Datuk Lee Kim Sai was also appointed Party Secretary General.
In order to realise the spirit of democratic reformation within the Party, the new leadership called for an EGM on March 2 to amend the Party Constitution with the objective of curtailing the privileges of the President, to specify the procedures for holding delegates' meetings and EGM so as to prevent a recurrence of the Party crisis.
When the new leadership was actively revitalizing the Party, Tan Koon Swan resigned as President due to personal matters. After repeated efforts to dissuade him from resigning failed, the Central Committee was left with no alternative but to accept his resignation with great regrets.
On September 3, Datuk Dr. Ling Liong Sik, the Deputy President, was promoted to President in accordance with the provision of the amended Constitution and Datuk Lee Kim Sai elected by the Central Committee as the Deputy President leaving the Vice President slot to be filled by Datuk Kok Wee Keat. The post of Secretary General was given to Ng Cheng Keat and National Organising Secretary to Wong Choon Wing. The new Assistant Secretary General was Woon See Chin.
A Task Force was formed to monitor the implementation of the New Economic Policy to effect an overall study of the progress of the Policy with the aim of making constructive suggestions for the benefit of the nation as a whole. Subsequently, a "Blueprint for Malaysian Solidarity" was formulated which spelt out the Party's stand on the strategies of nation-building in the post 1990 period.
The new leadership was faced with many challenges which included the cooperatives "scandal", the Party's hug debts, the issue on being dubbed alien and key posts in Chinese schools.
The "Cooperatives scandal" erupted upon discovery that 24 Chinese cooperative societies were unable to meet the demand for a refund by about half-a -million depositors who had invested their savings with these institutions. As the Party representing the Chinese, the MCA was determined to fight for the interest of these depositors and President Datuk Seri Dr. Ling pressed for a "dollar to dollar" refund for all the depositors. In the process, although faced with numerous difficulties and problems, the Party was firm in her stand and after carefully thought out strategies, the depositors were able to get a full refund as proposed by the Party which was eventually agreed to by the Cabinet.
The Party's debts with a bank was incurred in the early 1980s due to insufficient funding for the building of the new Party Headquarters in Jalan Ampang . The building was mortgaged in 1982 to get a loan of RM 25 million to pay the contractors and for renovations. Due to the party crisis in the following years and the economic recession, the occupancy rate deteriorated which resulted in insufficient rental income to service the bank loan. The amount due to the bank accumulated to a helfy RM 36 million in 1987and the Party was required to surrender the building to the bank should no solution be found. A "Rescue the Headquarters Building" movement was launched which succeeded in raising RM 19 million from within the Party. 49% of the equity of the building was sold to the Multi-purpose Group at a price of RM 20.7 million. The bank loan was then settled.
The "alien race or kaum pendatang" issue started with some delegates in the UMNO Youth Assembly describing the Chinese Malaysians as an alien race and questioned their loyalty to the nation and the king. Selangor MCA countered by passing a resolution in the annual delegates' conference saying that all races in the country are alien races as all of our forefathers migrated from other parts of the world to this country. The MCA stand angered the UMNO Youth and heated arguments were thrown at each other over the issue. Finally it was Deputy Prime Minister Ghafar Baba who put a stop to the quarrel by declaring that no one should call another alien as all are Malaysians. His stand effectively eliminated further quarrels.
The "Key posts in the Chinese schools" issue started when a number of state education chiefs posted non-Chinese teachers and teaching staffs to hold key positions in the Chinese primary schools in the respective states. The move caused concern amongst the Chinese community as they feared it would alter the characteristics of Chinese schools in this country. MCA leaders tried to resolve the problem in the cabinet but in vain. As no solution was in sight, MCA leaders and other Chinese community leaders held a protest meeting at the Thean Hou Temple. The meeting attracted strong reaction from the Malay community and they also organized a grand gathering to counter the move by the Chinese community.Under such chaotic situation, the government invoked the Internal Security Act to detain politicians/community leaders deemed to be posing security risks to the nation. Those detained included MCA leaders like Chan Kit Chee, Datuk Yap Pian Hon, Tan Chai Ho and Tang See Hang.
When the situation stabilised, the MCA sought to resolve the issue within the cabinet. After numerous rounds of discussions, it was agreed that a 5-member subcommittee be formed to handle the matter amicably. MCA representatives in the subcommittee proposed that only those who know the Chinese language and have been teaching in the Chinese schools be considered for five key posts in these schools. The proposal was accepted by the subcommittee and the issue was gradually settled without much publicity. Those detained were later released.
Former President Tan Koon Swan resigned as the Member of Parliament for Gopeng on April 3, 1987 and a by-election for the seat was held on May 28. MCA nominated an academician Dr. Ting Chew Peh as its candidate for the race. Although the DAP made use of the cooperatives issue to try to undermine the MCA's chances and even started a character assasination campaign on Dr. Ting, the voters rejected their advances and returned Dr. Ting with a resounding majority of 4523 votes.
Datuk Seri Dr. Ling took over as President at a time when the country and party were facing several key issues, and was tasked with finding solutions to these problems. To enable him to reflect more clearly on these issues, he took a six-week no-pay leave starting on October 1. His show of determination bore fruit when the government formed a National Economic Consultative Council in December to draft a new national economic policy to replace the New Economic Policy which expired in 1990.
The Ampang Jaya Parliamentary by-election seen as a crucial test not only to Party but also to the national political development, was held early this year. After concerted efforts by members of the MCA and components of the Barisan Nasional (National Front), MCA's candidate Ong Tee Keat defeated Malay opposition strongman Datuk Harun Idris who represented Semangat 46.
Shortly after that, on March 21, Party Vice-president and Health Minister Tan Sri Chan Siang Sun died of a heart attack. His death was a great loss to the Party and nation. The late Tan Sri Chan had been elected as the Member of Parliament for Bentong in every general elections since 1959 and was the longest serving Member of Parliament since independence. He was accorded an Official Funeral in recognition of his remarkable services.
Following his death, a by-election was held in Bentong on May 13. The MCA's candidate was Datuk Lim Ah Lek who was then a Pahang State Executive Council member. The by-election was a three-cornered fight with Datuk Lim Ah Lek defeating the other two with a convincing majority of 8506 votes. He was subsequently appointed Labour Minister (later renamed Human Resources Minister) and resigned his state seat which was won by the MCA's Kan Tong Leong in the by-election that followed.
In the eighth general elections, the Barisan Nasional, which the MCA is a senior component member, faced a crucial challenge from the opposition which formed two united-fronts with the sole purpose of overthrowing the incumbent government. The opposition move however failed to win the voters' support. When results of the polls were announced and the MCA's seats in Parliament increased to 18. The most significant result was in Seremban where the national chairman of the DAP, Dr. Chen Man Hin was defeated by the MCA's candidate, the second time that the top leader of DAP lost to the MCA. On the whole, the Barisan Nasional trounced the opposition and continue to govern the nation.
The MCA formed a "complaints unit" led by Michael Chong, the general administrative executive to deal with the increasing number of people seeking help from the Party in dealing with their daily problems. After the 1990 general elections, this Unit was enpanded to become the "MCA Central Public Services & Complaints Bureau " with Datuk Tan Chai Ho as the Chairman. Michael Chong and Mok Soon Cheong are to be responsible in running the "Public Complaints Unit" and "Government Affairs Unit" respectively. At the state level, each MCA State body formed its own Public Complaints Unit to help the public. The Bureau has solved numerous problems brought up by the people, problems related to administrative deviations in government departments; social ills; women's problems and others. The contributions of this Bureau are duly recognized by the people and Michael Chong has become a well-known personality within and without Malaysia including immigration and police officials of certain countries especially Japan and Taiwan.
The MCA Central Cultural Bureau Chairman Datuk Loke Yuen Yow proposed that a "Chinese Cultural City" be built to preserve and develop the rich Chinese cultural heritage. The proposal received encouraging responce from the Chinese community but not amongst others. In order not to stir up another controversy, the Party decided to place the project on hold until conditions were more favourable. However, under the initiatives of this Bureau, many Chinese cultural activities were held and these activities received tremendous response from members of thepublic. The MCA also organised "Mother's Day"; "Father's Day" functions in efforts to create a caring and loving society besides promoting filial piety.
The Party expanded its scope of activity to Sabah this year, with the setting up of many branches.
A fund-raising campaign for the TAR College Expansion Fund was launched on March 12 by President Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik. Through various activities, the campaign succeeded in collecting RM 30 million. With the "dollar to dollar" allocation from the government, the College received RM60 million to expand its main campus and build branch-campuses in Penang and Johore. With the expansion, the main campus would be able to take in 16,000 students and the two branches, when completed, would be able to take in 2,000 students respectively.
Another campaign of great significance was launched by President Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik on February 22, which is called " The Langkawi Project" with the aim of encouraging parents to adopt the right approach towards their children's education. Six sub-committees were formed to handle different aspects of the project.
In the Party elections this year, Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik and Datuk Lee Kim Sai were returned as President and Deputy President respectively. The four elected Vice-presidents were Datuk Lim Ah Lek, Datuk Jimmy Chua Jui Meng, Datuk Yap Pian Hon and Datuk Wong See Wah. The Youth Chairmanship went to Datuk Chan Kong Choy and Miss Teng Gaik Kwan was returned as the Chairman of the women's section.
On September 28, MCA formed its cooperative society the Koperasi Usaha Mawah Bhd (Komawah) with the purpose to take possession of the 500,000 shares of Koperasi Jayadiri which was owned by Koperasi Serbaguna Malaysia (KSM). The move was to ensure that the controlling interest of Kojadi remains with the Party.
"The Bukit China Issue" which was a hot issue in the eighties re-emerged when the Malacca state government demanded the payment of RM 2 million of quit rent from the Cheng Hoon Temple which is the organization responsible for its affairs. After tireless efforts by Party leaders especially Datuk Lim Ah Lek, the quit rent issue was successfully settled with the state government waiving the payment. The DAP tried to politicise the issue and discredit the MCA during the course of the efforts.
The PAS-controlled Kelantan state government which came into power in 1990 implemented a series of Islamic administrative measures and its state assembly passed the Hudud Laws (Islamic Penal Code) with the aim of turning the state into an Islamic state. The MCA strongly opposed the move which it considered to be going against the interests of the multi-racial nature of the state. The MCA also demanded that the DAP apologises for its role in successfully influencing the Chinese voters in the state in 1990 to give their support to PAS which led to the party coming into power in that state.
On January 15, the Central Committee adopted a proposal from the President to enlarge the scope of qualification for membership to enable any Malaysian citizen who possesses Chinese blood-linkage, to join the Party as a full-fledged member regardless of one's religious belief or characteristics of one's surname/family-name. This hallmark decision has far-reaching implications as it demonstrated the Party's liberalism and her ability to change with time. This move is also a follow-up to the party's open-door policy.
On March 15, Party President Datuk Seri Dr. Ling announced that the Party would start a fund-raising campaign to help the 60 independent Chinese secondary schools. A special committee headed by Datuk Lim Ah Lek was given the task to mobilise the 600,000 strong membership of the Party to systematically raise funds for the schools. This campaign received overwhelming support from the Chinese community and Chinese education organisations throughout the country and succeeded in raising RM 6 million which was distributed to the various schools.
The year was designated as a "Year of Culture" by the Party and many cultural activities were organised by the various state liaison committees and divisional committees to further promote the rich cultural heritage of the country. The keen participation of the people was a clear proof of the success of these programmes.
In the ninth general elections held this year, the Party performed remarkable well by winning 30 seats in Parliament and 70 seats in the state assemblies. MCA's parlimenary & state seats were later increased to 101 when the High Court decided that the election of DAP's representative of Bukit Bintang was null and void and MCA's candidate Dr. Lee Chong Beng was declared the valid candidate. With the joining of Sabah's Chau Tet On, the MCA thus has 102 Members of Parliament and State Assemblymen. The results indicated that Chinese voters have awakened politically and realised that the Chinese have to strengthen their say in the government and that the passive political approach of the oppositions, especially the DAP could never help solve the problems faced by the community. In short, the Chinese voters have preferred the spirit of consultation to that of confrontation.
MCA resolved various issues affecting Chinese education viz-a-viz formulation of the new Education Act 1995. Through the process of consultations within MCA and with relevant educational bodies, the party had successfully repealed Section 21 (2) and removed other sensitive provisions contained in the old Act. Through negotiations and consultations within the specially set up Cabinet Committee to revamp education policies, MCA also successfully ensured the retention of SRJK (C) Board of Directors following cancellation of Section 26(A).
In the Party elections in July, Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik was again returned as the Party's President. Datuk Lim Ah Lek was elected as the new Deputy President when Datuk Lee Kim Sai did not seek re-election. The four elected Vice-presidents are : Datuk Jimmy Chua Jui Meng; Datuk Dr. Fong Chan Onn; Datuk Yap Pian Hon and Ong Ka Ting. Datuk Chan Kong Choy continue to lead the Youth section and Datuk Teng Gaik Kwan was returned as Wanita Chairman.
In November, the only two state assemblymen of the DAP in Negeri Sembilan. Lee Yuen Fong and Khoo Seng Hock decided to join the MCA in order to be positive and constructive in serving and helping the people. Following their decision to join the MCA, the total number of people's representatives of MCA increased to 104.
The Party also took its first step into cyberspace with the launch of the MCA Homepage over the Internet. Riding on the new Information Technology, news, views and information relating to the Party is now available not only to the Malaysian public but to the whole world.
Significant progress was made by the Party toward its objective of cultivating a Caring and Sharing culture at all levels of its leadership. A wide range of activities undertaken by the leadership at the various levels had strong impact and contributed to the general welfare of its target groups namely in the area of education such as Chinese schools, Tunku Abdul Rahman College branch campuses, Langkawi project related activities
Through the central theme of "Touching Minds and Hearts" the MCA successfully implemented a wide range of activities aimed at building close rapport with other Chinese organisations and the voting segment. The initiation of several community projects such as "Pledge Your Computer" and "Respect Teachers" campaign was made possible with the support and collaboration of Chinese organisations such as ACCCIM and the FCAM.
Center-stage in the Party's political affairs is the increasing role of the Wanita section leadership levels. The Party President's proposal of a target quota of 30 percent Wanita representation in the municipal and local district councilors posts within the next 15 years, has been accepted. MCA Perak became the first state to appoint a Wanita representative as the assistant secretary of t he State Liaison Committee.
MCA’s political theme for 1998, "Together We Shall Overcome" aptly reflected all levels of the Party leadership in their determination and collective resolve in overcoming the Asian regional financial and economic turmoil which had affected our nation since July 1997. The MCA’s 1998 Action-Plan Agenda focused on grassroot activities in the form of campaigns and community projects in assisting the Barisan Nasional Government’s economic recovery measures. Prominent business community and corporate leaders enjoined their collective support in such activities to restore public confidence in the Government’s efforts. Various dialogues and forums were conducted throughout the year in ensuring the "true economic picture" was well understood by the communities at all levels so that full cooperation from them would enhance a speedy economic recovery.
On 24th February 1998, MCA President Datuk Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik launched the "Love Malaysia, Buy Malaysian Products" website, jointly organized by MCA Youth and CY Multimedia Lab IT, with more than 60 local manufacturing companies. Thousands of local Malaysian-made products were listed and were given full publicity by major local news dailies for a period of 6 months. A series of nationwide campaigns were also conducted with full support from between 5,000 to 10,000 participating Malaysian women in various major towns in the support of purchasing local products, a measure encouraged by the Government towards economic recovery. A patriotic campaign, Love Malaysia, Buy Malaysian Product" was also launched and officiated by the Malaysian Prime Minister YAB Datuk Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad at the Dataran Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur on the 31 May, 1998.
1998 was also a significant year as MCA launched the "Convention On The Innovation and Reforms In The Chinese Community" at the Selangor Chinese Assembly Hall on the 21 March. Jointly organized by the Federation of Chinese Associations Malaysia (Huazhong), the Associated Chinese Chamber of Commerce of Malaysia (ACCCIM) and the MCA, the "Changing Of Mindsets" campaign to promote positive traditional values and working ethics such as punctuality, discipline, good etiquette, caring and sharing values were well received by the broad spectrum of the Chinese community at all levels.
MCA celebrated its 49th National Anniversary Celebrations on 8 March 1998 at the Penang International Sports Arena in Bukit Jambul. During the year, under the Party’s "Caring and Sharing" programme of activities, numerous meaningful events were organised for the benefit of the needy, aged and less fortunate. One of such illustrated events included a presentation of RM50,000 cheque to the National Council of Senior Citizens Organisations Malaysia (NASCOM) by MCA President as part of a 3-year grant in support of their activities. MCA’s gesture was to assist NASCOM in addressing the various problems faced by the ageing population.
In 1999, MCA continued its hectic and busy schedule of Party projects and community oriented activities. From 1997’s political theme, " Touching Hearts and Minds", the Party moved a step further to nurture "One Heart, One Mind" in 1999, organising a nationwide series of events and providing opportunities for all ordinary Malaysians of all races to express their sentiments of love for the Malaysian nation. It was a timely move by MCA to mobilise and consolidate Malaysians in garnering their collective support for the Government’s drastic economic measures for the good of the nation in the face of continuing efforts to overcome our national economic downturn. The Party’s central leadership made in no uncertain terms that it was fully committed to the Barisan Nasional Government’s efforts in bringing our economy into the path of recovery within the shortest possible time. Hence, MCA’s 50th Anniversary theme, "For The People, For The Nation", aptly reflected the aspirations of MCA.
The MCA celebrated its 50th Anniversary Golden Jubilee at the national level with a 3-day programme of organised activities from 25 to 27 February 1999. Major highlights of the anniversary events included the launching of an MCA publication in commemoration of the MCA’s 50 years of historical contributions to nation-building and an anniversary dinner event officially graced by the Malaysian Prime Minister at the Stadium Nasional, Bukit Jalil on 25 February 1999. For the first time in MCA’s history, more than 13,000 guests comprising BN component leaders, Cabinet Ministers, State Ministers and leaders from major Chinese Associations and corporations and Party veterans attended the gala dinner event.
Memorable highlights of the celebrations included an exhibition on the Party’s history and achievements. More than 2,800 MCA leaders, members and Party veterans attended an official ceremony at Dewan San Choon, Wisma MCA, Kuala Lumpur. In his key-note speech, the MCA Party President paid tribute to the Party’s founding fathers and former Prime Ministers of Malaysia.
In the Party Elections in July, MCA Party President Dato' Seri Dr. Ling Liong Sik, Deputy President Dato' Lim Ah Lek and all the 25 Party's Central Committee members were elected unopposed at the Party's 46th Annual General Assembly for the term 1999-2002. The elected MCA Vice Presidents were: Datuk Dr. Fong Chan Onn, Dato' Chua Jui Meng, Dato' Seri Ong Ka Ting and Dato' Chan Kong Choy. Datuk Ong Tee Keat and Dato' Ng Yen Yen were newly elected as National Chairman of the Youth and Wanita wings respectively.
More than 2,400 MCA central delegates attended the 46th Annual General Assembly on July 17th, which for the first time, was attended by both the Prime Minister YAB Dato' Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and Deputy Prime Minister Dato' Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. In his presidential address, Dr. Ling remarked "the overall election results of the Party at various levels has illustrated the party grassroots' emphasis toward unity and stability". This was reflected by 96 per cent of new office-bearers at branch level, 75 per cent at division level including some 80 per cent at Youth and Wanita State level, being elected unopposed.
During the year, the Party had continued efforts in developing the infrastructural facilities and amenities of Tunku Abdul Rahman College (TARC) and its branch campuses. On 28th June 1999, the Penang branch campus was officially opened by Depuaty Prime Minister YAB Dato' Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, while the former Education Minister YB Dato' Seri Najib Tun Razak officiated the opening of the Johor TARC branch campus in July 1999.
The MCA's "Smart School" project was launched by the Party President in August 1998, in which some 114 schools would be in the MCA-SJK© Smart school system by June 2000.
During the year, MCA Central Leadership established the "MCA-JE Humanitarian Fund" as a proactive effort to assist immediate financial assistance to pig-farmers strickened by the JE epidemic.The public fund-raising campaign officially ended on May 1999.Towards educational projects, MCA continued its various efforts toward Kojadi, TAR College Branch campuses and successfully obtained permanent registration status for all the Chinese Independent Secondary Schools nationwide. MCA also commenced its own "SMART’ School project specifically for Chinese Primary Schools. The Party’s youth and "wanita" wings also actively played a complementary role in assisting the parent MCA in numerous community oriented projects during the year under review.
In the 1999 General Elections, MCA won 28 Parliamentary and 68 State seats out of the respective 35 and 77 electoral seats contested.
Ever since the launching of "MCA's All Out War Against Ecstasy and Illegal Slot Machine" in the year 2000, the Party has been praised for its effort and determination to curb the social ills. Besides receiving praises from Commonwealth leaders, MCA was commended by the National Drug Agency for being "the pioneer among the political parties in the country to successfully rally all Malaysians against the drug through its anti-Ecstasy campaign." Many non-Governmental organizations and social bodies have shown immense support for the campaign, in addition to the Government's more frequent and stringent checks against Ecstasy selling and illegal gaming activities.
In October, the accounts of the MCA's aid fund for families affected by the Japanese Encephalitis (JE) outbreak ware announced. The JE Humanitarian Fund amounting to RM15.8 million was in the auditors' report prepared by Pricewarterhouse Coopers for the JE Humanitarian Fund Monitoring Committee. Some 4,426 victims affected by the virus outbreak had benefited from the fund. All the major newspapers had published the details of the money used. MCA, however, still gave the list of 4,426 JE Humanitarian Fund beneficiaries to DAP, which did nothing during the JE outbreak but was now looking for faults.
By making the account public, the Party has shown accountability and transparency in handling public funds, which seldom practiced by other political parties.
Later, on 29th of October, the MCA Central Committee also accepted a report on the Chang Ming Thien Foundation (CMTF) tabled at its meeting in Penang. The 28 page report was prepared and compiled by the MCA Three-man Special Committee appointed by the MCA Presidential Council on 9th October 2000. Led by MCA National Treasurer Tan Sri Dato' William Chek Lin Kwai, Koperasi Serbaguna Malaysia Chairman Dato' Lau Yin Pin and MCA National Legal Bureau Chairman Leong Tang Chong, the Committee had compiled the report containing all the facts and events regarding the formation, incorporation, control and management of the RM10 Million charitable fund that have taken place from 27th November 1980 to 30th September 2000 in a chronological order. The full CMTF report was then published and advertised on local newspapers to clear doubts and for the public to see the truth as it was. This truly showed MCA's concern over the matter, as such act had never happened in the Party history before.
Meanwhile, the role of Langkawi Project had expanded to include the setting up of community libraries. Incorporating the formation of "cyber clubs", the "pilot project" would be selectively set up within the identified 20 MCA electoral constituencies. The community library cum cyber club project also entailed a long-term action plan that would bring tremendous benefits to the rural young and adult parents particularly in forming a better informed community in terms of gaining "IT" literacy, and building up a computer literate society as well as a K-economy.
During the year, the Party's National Youth spearheaded by Datuk Ong Tee Keat had formulated innovative action plans, healthy lifestyle youth-related activity program and basic training program towards "IT" developments and computer literacy particularly among the youth. It also played an active and effective role in assisting the parent MCA body in resolving several important issues confronting the Chinese community. On the other hand, the Wanita MCA leadership led by Dato' Ng Yen Yen had served to further educate the Malaysian public particularly among womenfolk on the roles of MCA and its "Wanita" wing. Other emphasis of the wing included issues affecting the women community and a long-term strategy to change the mindset of Malaysian women in order to participate in the mainstream of Government's policy-making process.