PUTRAJAYA: Some 20 leaders of prominent Chinese non-governmental groups met Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak over a private lunch here to raise several issues related to the community.
Among these are the importance of a moderate and well-represented government, continuous economic growth and relations with China.
The group, which met reporters after lunch, said it was pleased with the opportunity to be able to express its views on the country’s current affairs.
Federation of Chinese Associations Malaysia (Huazong) chairman Tan Sri Pheng Yin Huah said Malaysia-China relations was important to the economy.
“We have had good relations with China since 1974 and especially after Najib became Prime Minister. We can also see that China places importance on its relations with Malaysia,” he said, adding that Huazong also believed the need for all communities, including the Chinese, to be well represented in the Government.
“A well-represented government is important for the nation’s stability and good for development.
“This is also to reflect Malaysia’s multiracial community and enable issues to be resolved,” he said.
China-Asean Business Association president Tan Sri Lim Gait Tong said anti-China sentiments were not good for the country and Asean.
“Such a stance by a group of politicians and racists can be harmful for the continuing good relations between Malaysia and China,” he added.
China, said Lim, was emerging as a strong economic power and has given Asean special treatment.
“This strength has become an advantage for Malaysia, which is turning to be a preferred destination for China.
“This is great for our economy in years to come,” he said.
Hokkien Association of Malaysia life honorary president Tan Sri Tee Hock Seng agreed on the need to maintain good relations with China.
“This is not just for economic purposes and to bring more jobs. Relations with China can also help in development as in the case of the East Coast Rail Link (ECRL)” he said.
Tee said contrary to claims, 70% of construction materials as well as workers for the ECRL project were sourced locally.
The United Chinese Schools Committee Association (Dong Zong) thanked the Government for including the recognition of the United Examination Certificate (UEC) in Barisan Nasional’s manifesto.
Its president Datuk Vincent Lau Lee Ming hoped that this could be realised after the general election.
Lau said Dong Zong had been trying to get recognition for UEC, which had been around for 43 years.
Earlier in Kuala Selangor, Najib said Malaysia was not under financial duress or had gone bust as alleged by the Opposition.
“If Malaysia is indeed a failed nation or bankrupt country as alleged by the Opposition, you think our candidates can ask for allocations?” asked Najib in his speech at SMK Puncak Alam.
He was referring to Kuala Selangor MP Datuk Seri Dr Irmohizam Ibrahim’s “demands” for a hospital in Jeram, a community college as well as for the expansion of the public healthcare centre in Puncak Alam.