PSM FLAGS INVADE IPOH TOWN !

Ipoh, 17th. February 2001

Today, Ipoh town witnessed a new alien. The PSM flag - striking red with a clenched left fist was seen everywhere leading to the Dewan Tow Boh Keong at town centre. The hall itself was full of the flags. One observer said, "it seems PSM has invaded Ipoh".

The PSM Sg. Siput fund raising dinner held today was an overwhelming victory when a thousand people attended the dinner. The attendance was an endorsement by the work done all this while by front members as well as PSM activist in Ipoh and Sg. Siput. The crowd had a mixture of mostly working class people from various communities surrounding Ipoh as well as Sg. Siput. The Alternative Front(BA) too participated in full force.

The programme started at 8pm. when a slide show was presented. The first slide was a poem by PSM chairperson Comrade Nasir Hashim. The poem titled "Perjuangan Sosialis" described the struggle as opposing all cruelty, all colonialisation, all hypocrisy and all exploitation to create a new system which can unite all the differences. The Slide show was followed by the welcoming address from PSM Sg. Siput treasurer Sdr. Sukumaran. Then PSM Secretary General, Comrade Arutchelvan addressed the crowd. Among the highlight of his speech was when he announced that PSM will field Dr. Jeyakumar for a rematch with Samy Vellu for 2004 to end Samy Vellu's legacy in Malaysian politics. This brought rousing applause from the floor.

This was followed by other speeches and performances. Among the guest of honour who attended were Parti Keadilan Nasional, Secretary General Sdr. Anuar Tahir, Sdr. Mohd Azhar from Pemuda PAS, Hew Yoon Tat- PRM Ipoh Brach chairperson as well as other leaders from villagers and estates.

PSM Party Chairperson, Comrade Nasir in his keynote speech said that PSM though a small party will always fight the odds. He said the party became the first party in Malaysian history to take the Home Minister to court. He also talked about the numerous grassroot efforts and intervention by the party. We will fight fearlessly for the struggle, he declared. Anuar Tahir in his speech among other things said, " if BN is afraid to endorse PSM registration, then BA will register the party when BA comes to power". This statement received tremendous applause from the floor.

The event was interrupted when a group of farmers from Gunung Pari Kuala Kuang wanted to present the party with a souvenir. They presented a red banner with the words, " Long Live The Peoples Struggle" to party chairperson. A sketch was also presented by party front in Kajang, Community Development Centre. The Sketch was titled what happened in Sg. Siput in 1999. The sketch brought much laughter as well as took a swipe at BN dirty tactics and Samy Vellu.

The much awaited speech from Dr. Jeyakumar then followed. Dr. Kumar spoke about the problem faced by the people. He said the problems encounted by the nation is not a racial nor a religious problem. It is the problem between the rich and the poor. To address this inequal system, the socialist analysis and PSM has become relevant.

The event ended with a song from Band Rakyat titled "Uprising". The band which has created several interesting hits about local struggles entertained the crowd and was well received by the audience.

The day ended with the slogan, " Long Live working class, Long Live Class Struggle" which was shouted in all three languages.

PSM has grown in the last two years. The support received by the party in its first public gathering in Ipoh was overwhelming. It has made PSM a potential force in a town previously controlled by the Seenivasagam brothers.