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Date: 22 Nov 1999
Kit Siang takes softer approach in speeches
IPOH: DAP secretary-general Lim Kit Siang, normally hard-hitting in his speeches, took a softer approach yesterday by appealing to locals here to help the party make inroads in the election.
"We can either win big or lose big," he said, adding that the party merely wanted to deny Barisan Nasional its two-third majority.
He said this was the first time in his 33 years in politics that he felt lost.
However, he said the DAP could make history this time if there were no dirty tricks used during the general election.
"It's not just a question of facing formidable foes. Other factors can affect us or I may just scrape through in Bukit Bendera," he said, referring to the parliamentary seat which he would be contesting against Gerakan's Chia Kwang Chye.
Speaking at a ceramah here on Sunday, Lim played on the compassion of the audience by talking about an eight-month pregnant woman who was killed during a police shoot-out and how Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was recently disallowed from visiting his dying brother.
"We can have different political views but under no circumstances should we cease to have compassion," he said.
Lim also criticised the huge advertisements in newspapers which urged for votes for the Barisan Nasional.
"I think I will write to the Prime Minister, telling him not to worry. The job is his but he could be the first prime minister without a two-thirds majority," he quipped.
Lim also said the DAP had made it clear to PAS' leaders that it was against the forming of an Islamic state.
"We are merely co-operating to restore justice and good governance," he said.
The Barisan, he said, had told the people that a vote for DAP was a vote for PAS.
"But in the Malay areas, they would say that a vote for PAS is a vote for DAP. So who's voting for what?" he asked.
He said the DAP suffered in the 1995 general election but a by-election two years later saw the people in Teluk Intan "writing history and creating a miracle."
The DAP, through its representative M. Kulasegaran, won handsomely in that election, he said.
Speaking to reporters later, Lim said the DAP was facing a "do or die" battle in this elections.
Even the strong ones like him could fall, he said.