Former inspector-general of police Hanif Omar said he had been tough in maintaining the country’s harmony as the top cop and towards this had put DAP supremo Lim Kit Siang behind bars, according to a Sinar Harian report.
Explaining, Hanif noted that the Alliance had formed its successor coalition, BN, following the 1969 riots.
“At that time, the Alliance formed BN because the country was on the brink of destruction. DAP suggested that Peninsular Malaysia be split into two, East Coast for the Malays and the West Coast for the Chinese.
“What was my answer? I put Lim Kit Siang in prison.
“He was in (detention) for two years. That was Hanif’s way when I was the inspector-general of police,” he was quoted as saying by Sinar Harian during an event at Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM) in Shah Alam today.
Hanif served as the inspector-general of police from 1974 to 1994.
Lim was later detained under the now defunct Internal Security Act for the second time during the Operasi Lalang in 1987.
It is unclear if DAP or Lim himself had made the statement as alleged by Hanif but the previous government had a penchant for blaming Lim for racial strife in the country.
This includes claims that Lim was responsible for the 1969 riots even though he was not in Peninsular Malaysia at the time of the incident.
Despite this, Lim was detained under the Internal Security Act for 18 months following the 1969 riots.
Hanif was also quoted by Sinar Harian as stating that neither DAP nor PAS had been helpful in the fight against the communists.
“During the fight against the communists, DAP had never helped. They never uttered anything against the Communist Party of Malaya.
“PAS was also the same. They did not help. Religious sermons would say the police and military men who died were martyrs but PAS claimed they died in vain (mati katak),” he said.