Public Discourse Must Be Based On Facts, Reason and Principles

The Penang State Government regrets that Barisan Nasional leaders, Utusan Malaysia and some publications stubbornly persist in refusing to publish the vandalisation of the BM/Arabic road sign in Lebuh Acheh two days ago.

By continuing to provoke racial sentiments in opposing the BM/Mandarin and BN/Tamil usage of road signs and not BN/Arabic road signs, Barisan Nasional leaders, Utusan Malaysia and some publications are practicing double standards and dangerously politicising this issue to divide Malaysians.

The Penang State Government believes in freedom of expression and is willing to hear public criticism of its policy.

However, such public discourse must be based on facts and not falsehood, reason, not emotion and principles, not prejudice.

The Penang State Government believes that the people believe in facts, reason and principles and will not allow these irresponsible elements undermine their confidence in the Penang State Government’s effort to promote their welfare.

3 thoughts on “Public Discourse Must Be Based On Facts, Reason and Principles”

  1. YB Lim,

    Biased media coverage must be very frustrating. I can partly understand (albeit my examples are quite unimportant to the state) because when I was in school I was in the newspapers twice and both times they got info wrong, and now the same paper seems to have decided not to publish my letters and haven’t responded to my email to inquire why that is so. There is concern about accuracy of bloggers, but what about accuracy of mainstream press!

    Nonetheless, I can’t help feeling this bilingual signs issue is a bit like making mountain out of a molehill.

    Aren’t vandalisms rather common anyway? Whatever the motivation for the vandalism, isn’t your government also fanning the issue by harping on it? Whatever actions a government takes, there are bound to be supporters and detractors, so why not just move on and forget about it? While replacing the signs will cost the state money, it feels to me as though this has become an issue more for attention-seeking. If we are to argue cost, then what about the cost of making multilingual signs in the first place?? This is such a trivial matter!

    I am more concerned (and confused) about the UNESCO World Heritage status and potential repercussions. What is the true situation now? Please be honest; I’m not criticising your administration, I’m just confused.

    Is it true that 3 of the tall buildings approved during the previous administration was in consultation with UNESCO and therefore do not threaten the status? If yes, is it only the latest approval that is of question? I’m asking because I want to get an idea of how much we’ll stand to lose financially should we decide to keep the UNESCO status. Any matured person would realise that it is not time to point fingers, since anyone is prone to slip-ups, but to see how best to handle the situation.

    To be honest, having visited other World Heritage Sites around the world, having the status isn’t as glamorous and big deal as Malaysia and its media has made it to be. It’s quite laughable how much we dramatise it, actually. I think it is a good thing because it will compel administrations to preserve the character of Penang that makes it unique. However, I personally, won’t be overly distraught if we lose it. Although, due to previous over-dramatisation and recent King of Tennis fiasco, the public might not be as kind…

    Your administration has emphasised CAT and I am curious about the above blog on Dr Teng’s mismanagement of funds. You are, after all an accountant, so scrutiny of finance management should be your forte. I’m a skeptic by nature so won’t buy everything someone tells me until I can see all the documents and decide for myself, especially when it is a political party providing the info. However, I agree that the previous Penang government was pretty useless with either neglected or haphazard planning of traffic and development.

    Please show leadership and prove that you are genuine about CAT, and explain conclusively to the public what the situation is on the UNESCO World Heritage status – What extent of dilemma are we facing?

    Thank you for your time. I appreciate you are facing an uphill battle and admire your strength in making a stand against the more dominant BN. I’m not a supporter of any party, but on behalf of Malaysians and its future, I thank you and wish you all the best.

  2. A road signs to divide Malaysians, it really a small issue to provoke to big fire. But I strongly believe a wise Malaysian will not take this as racial sentiments. Anyway with more road signs, don’t you think is good.

    I believe with the competent, accountable & transparent (CAT) as the objective of Penang government, the rakyat know who to trust.

    As the recent UNESCO Penang World Heritage issue, I do not follow the issue, but hope Penang government can make a decision according to CAT.

  3. LGE is doing the best job ever seen but it can be understood that BN leaders are getting the pinch daily for their past terrible mistake on public fund waste and not being the true representatives for the rakyat. Newspapers may spread all sort of wrong information but the public is aware what you have done for the benefit of all Penang people. CAT policy is the best policy and we want you to continue your good work and I’m ensure all the Penangties is with you.

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