KUALA LUMPUR: "Long live BN, destroy Pakatan.”
These were the words of Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who rallied a packed hall of more than 5,000 party members yesterday as Barisan Nasional seeks to reclaim the Federal Territory parliamentary seats lost during the 2008 general election.
Muhyiddin, who is also the Federal Territory BN chairman and Umno deputy president, said BN had been leading the country for the past 54 years and had vast experience in facing challenges affecting the public.
“Pakatan Rakyat (PR) has brought a new ideology and questioned matters which we have already accepted before this,” he said at Kuala Lumpur City Hall's Training Institute.
“They question the majority of the provisions in the Federal Constitution. They claim we are not fair to every race in this country.
“I would invite you to fight them. They are groups that want to destroy our country. It is our responsibility as BN youths to come forward and become a bulwark in defending our country. These are the challenges we face today.”
He said BN must not allow PR to distort facts like the National Higher Education Fund Corporation (PTPTN) loan, where the youths had been deceived by opposition leaders.
“Young students have asked to gather in Dataran Merdeka. I have followed the developments for many days and the reception has been poor. What an embarrassment it is for them because they have been lied by the Opposition,” he said.
Muhyiddin also said the Opposition had been calling for unlimited freedom for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) movement in the country.
“If they want to bring uncivilised culture, then BN youth must fight against it till the end and not allow them to bring down our system of life which we have built in this country,” he said.
He also stressed that the Federal Territory “is the door to our country” and that BN must work hard to engage the grassroots to ensure victory.
During 12th general election, BN only managed to win Setiawangsa from 11 Federal Territory parliamentary seats in Kuala Lumpur. The ruling coalition also lost its traditional two-thirds parliamentary majority.
Barisan Nasional Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin, who was present, said PR leaders were hypocrites.
Mocking the anti-PTPTN gathering at Dataran Merdeka, he said: “Today the university students are being used and ordered to go to Dataran Merdeka and set up tents.
“Supposedly, they represent the students' voice but we can see how many students that have came out and, if I am not mistaken, there are not even five tents there.
“Supposedly, the five tents represent the voice of the students to abolish PTPTN and show support to Pakatan Rakyat. I think more young people have lined up to buy a new iPad than the five tents in Dataran Merdeka.”
Puteri Umno chief Datuk Rosnah Abdul Rashid Shirlin said PR was being irresponsible for using the youths as human shields for their own political interest.
“We have the worse Opposition in the world who are willing to make our youths sleep on the streets while they sleep in their comfortable air-conditioned room,” she said.
“Our leaders will never hide behind the country's youth.”