Lim Kit Siang nabbed at the airport

LKS Series # 3


Dear Sir

 Re: Hello Lim Kit Siang. (28  years old). On 13th May 1969, where art thou? 

The 1969  May 13th   racial riots started from the house of  the then Menteri Besar, Dato Harun Idris. The house was in Princes Road ( Jalan Raja Muda). Half a kilometre away, at Fook Chuen Mansions, Batu Road ( Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman ) was the office of the then Secretary General of the Democratic Action Party, Mr Goh Hock Guan.*. He was and still is a Chartered Architect and Town Planner practising under the name of M/s Goh Hock Guan and Associates.


Prior to 13th May  1969, LKS  was a political  Liliputian. He was the DAP National  Organising Secretary and the Editor of The Rocket** then.  His first  political debut projected to the Malaysian public was his  participation in the “ Great Cultural Debate” between the DAP and the Gerakan which took place before the General Elections of 1969. At that point in time Gerakan was in the Opposition. After the 13th May riots, Gerakan joined the Alliance to form the Barisan, until today. The debate was held at the MARA Auditorium which was at Batu Road, Kuala Lumpur.


When the ethnic riots started on 13th May 1969,  LKS was in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. A political novice, untried with no credentials to back him up. He was campaigning for the independent candidates there. Fellow members of the DAP in Petaling Jaya called LKS on the phone asking him not to come back to Kuala Lumpur for his own safety until such a time when  things cooled down. (Official fiqures:190 plus, Malaysians killed.)


LKS in his maiden political quest for justice, freedom, upholding of democracy and an equal right to happiness, dignity and fulfillment in life,  was already under the “protective” custody of the KK police. He replied that he “ is going back to Kuala Lumpur immediately and is not afraid to DIE for his political convictions” — all for a better life for all Malaysians. There was no choice. He had to martyr himself. There was no alternative. However, in case his life was spared, LKS was prepared to face any charges that the Alliance Government will bring up and charge against him.


Flights between East and West Malaysia was suspended.  Also at that point in time there was no direct flight between Kuala Lumpur and Kota Kinabalu. LKS took the first flight out of KK to Singapore en route to KL on 15th May 1969. He had to stopover in Singapore.  

When he was in Singapore, he had many friends and supporters to discuss the racial riots and its consequences on opposition members. Anything can happen. There was no guarantee on his safety. LKS was adamant that it was his sacred duty to go back to KL.


He took the first available flight to Subang International Airport ( now Sultan Abdul Aziz Airport ) on 18th May 1969. He boarded the plane at the Paya Lebar International Airport, Singapore The  plane took off for KL.


While airborne, all of a sudden, LKS found that he was now alone. Alone to face the music. He cannot turn back then, unless of course the pilot turned the plane around. Samuel Taylor Coleridge can describe him as:-

“Alone alone, all all alone

Alone on a wide wide sea

And never a saint took pity on his soul in agony” – in the Rime of the Ancient Mariner.

                                                                                  Samuel Taylor Coleridge


The airborne mariner cannot change his mind then. Can he call for help? Call who? Call the CIA?. Call the FBI? Call the KGB?. Call MI 5?. Call OSS?. Call Chin Peng?. Call Chen Tian?. ( there were no mobile phones then)


Lim Kit Siang believed that he was going to be eliminated. On this last home coming  flight,   he  decided  to write a  last  letter to his wife – a homemaker. He asked his wife to be strong, to  expect  the EXPECTED and  to  bring up the four children.***.  To LKS, the demise of LKS is NOT important. The Political Future of Malaysians and the Future of Malaysia ARE of Paramount Importance. Malaysia MUST GO ON!  The letter was physically handed to the flight stewardess for posting. But it was without a stamp. Until today the letter was not delivered.  

The curfew was on. There were  lots of soldiers around the Subang Airport  then. They were there guarding the airport and to PROBABLY “welcome” home  in a formal reception “ceremony” for Mr Lim Kit Siang. All the soldiers’ SLR rifles were on a horizontal level. Their forefingers were just glazing the side of the trigger, in preparation to shoot at any time.


The moment of truth had arrived. The stage was set. The grand finale was about to begin. LKS came into  the arrival  hall. The atmosphere was unexceptionally quiet. Nobody was talking. The silence was deafening. It was tense and solemn because everybody were expecting the arrival of the Yang Berhormat,  the DAP MP for Bandar Malacca (now Kota Melaka). LKS was no fugitive. LKS, a young, non violent, non belligerent man, stepped out of the arrival hall. A group of Special Branch Officers  and soldiers with their horizontal SLRs “greeted” him. LKS need not hail a taxi for his transport to KL. There were no taxis anyway. There was also NO shooting.



On his journey to the High Street Police Station, LKS saw for himself the senseless carnage, atrocities, plunder and destruction. Smoke can still be seen from houses which were torched. After a few days of detention in the High Street Police Station, LKS was  sent   to a Police Station in Kuala Selangor, Selangor. 


Prior to 13-05-69, Dato Dr Ismail (later Tun), left the Government. He joined back the Government immediately after 13-05-69. The first words he said was “Democracy is Dead”.  As the Minister of Internal Security, Dato Ismail signed the Detention Order on LKS. LKS was then sent to the Muar Detention Camp. He was entitled to free food and lodging for the next 18 months at taxpayers’ expense. Ironically, Muar was 32 miles away from LKS home. His house is in Batu Pahat,  Johore

The Internal Security Act is an Act of Parliament formulated to suppress the communist insurgency and to arrest the communists at that period of time. Ironically, the PAP’s ( later DAP) Member of Parliament for Bungsar (now Bangsar) , Mr Devan Nair supported the ISA Bill earlier then.****. It is detention without trial.


While under detention LKS was appointed the 3rd  National Secretary General of the DAP (in absentia). There was a vacancy. The appointment was necessary because somebody had  disappeared  but  can be found in another country. He stayed put in that country then. “ I am NO LIM KIT SIANG.  If  I  go back  then,  all of you will be deprived of a Great Leader”.    The vacancy was filled. LKS  held  the  post of  National Sec-Gen  till 1999.


LKS could have absconded while in Singapore. ( Singapore was given independence by Malaysia in 1965). He could have asked for political asylum in another country. He could have been an MP in exile. He was and is a true loyal Malaysian Citizen. With guts, he went back to the hornet’s nest – “a river of no return”,  says Marilyn Monroe. Sorry. My apologies. He was and is  still in one piece. He was never charged in open court then. He will still be around for many years to come.


Cowards die many times before their deaths, the valiant never taste of death but once”—Julius Caesar, William Shakespeare

Again sorry lah Kit, (as he is fondly known as).  We do realise that, the particular effective organ that is part of your anatomy is your gift of  the gap – a non lethal instrument. Now we know you are battle hardened. In spite of your tireless, relentless political pursuit, vocal, articulate or otherwise, until today, matters have become from bad to worst. True, “That All Men Are Born Equal but then some selectives are more equal than others—Abraham Lincoln’s version for  2nd class citizens.


LKS was again detained, the 2nd time in 1987, (after the 1986 General Election)  under the Mahathir Administration. He got free curry lunch, lodging, bed and breakfast again for another 18 months, on the auspicious pleasure of the host — the Barisan Government ala taxpayers. Again  no charges were brought against him. Can somebody name me a similar Malaysian likewise?



Somebody say LKS only NATO ( No action, talk only). If that is the case, let him talk! We like to hear him talk. Why detain him to stop him from talking? You are hitting below the belt. Do you want him to talk on what you like to hear and then stop him from talking on what you don’t like to hear? But at the same time you go on talking and talking on what we don’t like to hear! (Editor: hahah…that’s a good one! )


Finally, a belated sincere tribute must be made to the powers that be, at that critical, predatory point of time. LKS’s life was spared. The expected was not performed. The expected was unexpected – so to speak! Had LKS, the political apprentice left us to join the happy hunting ground, he will be forgotten. Nobody will raise an eyelid after all:-


“When beggars die, no comets are seen.

The heavens blaze forth the marriage of princes  Julius Caesar,  William Shakespeare’s

                                                                                 modern version

The powers that be was still rational then. Maybe its was mercy.


The quality of mercy is not strained

It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven

The Merchant of Venice. William Shakespeare                                                           


So to the players of  May the 13th, I am wishing a belated words of  thanks. To Whom It May Concern.  Thank You Very Much  for the fact that we still have LKS around. Say what we like. We argue.  We are all still Malaysian Citizens. We are born here. Do you want to deprive LKS  of his citizenship like Mr Lim Lean Geok ? By the way LKS is local born and can be classified as a Baba and his wife a Nonya. He is more Malaysian than  a bigger number of Malaysians put together!

Finally, we reiterate that we are all peace loving citizens. Some say we are citizens “by default”. This is subjective and debatable. Supposing we ARE citizens by default, we are still citizens, maybe 2nd class citizens or otherwise.


To all Malaysian mankind:-

He loveth best, who loveth best, both man and bird and beast.

He loveth well, who loveth well, for all things both great and small

For the dear God who loveth us, he made and loveth all.”  

Samuel Taylor Coleridge’s moral message to humanity especially to Malaysian humans.                                                                                              

The writer notes that after the riots of 13th May 1969, the Deputy Prime Minister, Dato Abdul Razak (later Tun) set up  The National Operations Council. Parliament was suspended after all “Democracy is Dead”. Looking after this NOC, was Dato Ghazali Shafie (later Tun).                                                             4

Incidentally, the 3rd man in ranking, in  the  NOC  then, was a slim, serious, handsome, no nonsense looking man – a politically unknown then.  He was probably the “executive secretary” of the NOC. He literally commanded the day to day operations of the NOC —  hands on. He was already a “Chief Executive Officer” and “Prime Minister” then, way back during 1969.  He looked familiar and was identical  towards  a former school mate of mine from my Alma Mater : Methodist Boys School, Penang. My school mate’s  name was and is Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.


Lastly, to all the participants of May the 13th that are not indicted including Lim Kit Siang. All are still executives of  liberty,  happy,  free from all encumbrances and despotic control. All will live happily ever after including LKS.


* Mr Goh Hock Guan was the 2nd DAP Secretary General (1968 to 13th May 1969). Mr Goh’s  sister, Ms Phyllis Goh was an architect undergraduate then and was a college mate of the writer.

In 1969, the writer was staying above the office of M/s Goh Hock Guan & Associates at Fook Chuen Mansions at Batu Road, Kuala Lumpur. He had a 1st Class ring side seat cum an On Line, Real Time bird’s eye view of the May 13th story.


** Lim Kit Siang was the 1st DAP National Organising Secretary and Editor of The Rocket. (1966 to 1969).

Lim Kit Siang was appointed the 3rd  DAP Secretary General (1969 – 1999) – the longest serving DAP Sec Gen.


*** As at 13th May 1969, Lim Kit Siang has four children then. The eldest is a son 9 years old then. He is Lim Guan Eng,  the  present day  Secretary General of the DAP.  An Australian Graduate of  Monash University, he is an Accountant by profession.


The second child is a daughter. She was 7 years as at 13th May 1969. She hold a double degree – in law and in accountancy.


The third child is also a daughter. She was 6 years old as at 13th May 1969. She is a B.A degree holder.


The last and fourth child is a son. He was 3 years old as at 13th May 1969. He is a heart specialist. A few years ago, I understand that he was attached to the IJN (Institut Jantung Negara) as a cardiologist.




PAP is the People’s Action Party of Singapore which was already ruling Singapore in 1964.


Mr Devan Nair was  born in Malacca on the 8th of August 1923. He was the main organizer and founder of the DAP. Naturally he became the 1st Secretary General of the DAP ( 1966 – 1968). He stood as a PAP ( later DAP) candidate in Bungsar in the 1964 General Election. Winning this Bungsar seat, he became the Member of Parliament for PAP in  the 1964 – 1969 parliamentary session. From 1981 to 1985 he was appointed  the President of Singapore. Dr Chen Man Hin, the present day DAP Life Advisor said “ Without him the DAP may not be born”.


The writer at 18 years old, campaigned for Mr Devan Nair during 1964 General Election. His son Janadas (now Ph D) recalled the days when he was small boy as at 1964. He remembered an incident when the writer was nearly apprehended by  the police when the writer put up a  2nd  political banner at the Railway Station  KL  prior to the 1964 General Elections. The setting up of the 1st banner was earlier accomplished at the flyover, beside the KL Railway Station. The banner says “ Vote  PAP – a  Non Communist  Democratic Socialist Party”. The writer then was able to outwit, out manoeuvre and  run away from the  police in  a  busy  KL  because he was young,  agile and  was on a portable bicycle! 

Dr Jana (as he is known to me) who is now residing in Canada. He was here  on  2006 during the DAP Devan Nair Memorial. We recalled the good old days.


The writer deliberately put in the names of the literary writers because of requests from the younger readers.



Watch out for

1)  Dr Lim Kit Siang.

2) “Lim Kit Siang – 18 months after 13th May 1969” in the coming episodes.

3) Lim Kit Siang an opportunist and an agent of UMNO?


Yours truly,


James Bond Zero Zero One


18 Responses to “Lim Kit Siang nabbed at the airport”

  1. shenyeeaun Says:


  2. shiver Says:

    true champion,
    whatever happened to lee lam thye?
    why he left DAP?
    did he had enough of sitting under detention without trial?
    why is suddenly so pro-BN?
    strange things happens in politics…

  3. Famous Inventors Says:

    Famous Inventors

    Famous Inventors

  4. salmah ismail Says:

    Dear Mr Lim Kit Siang,

    I am representing most of the JPA sponsored students who were over joy on the announcement made by our great PM during the 2008 budget for “kenaikan kadar biasiswa” to 97 percent for JPA sponsored students in USA,Britain and Canada. It was a real short live released us as the announcement was done without checking what really will be implemented. Do you believe that the increment is conditional. Students are to finance their own hostel fees and the policy 60/40% fees paid prior to the announcement for all the in-campus students are stopped by JPA. If so, why must the announcement be made by PM and sounds as if our welfare are really being taken care of. Policy changes by JPA most of the time done to suits their way of implenting their task not for the welfare of the students. Please sir, we appeal for you to bring this issue with JPA and the goverment so that our short live release will turn to be a reality. Do something Mr Lim, we know you are capable to tackle this ISSUE!!! Thank you and we do appreciate your concerned.

  5. Zhao Pao Lian Says:

    Truly LKS is a hero and has come a long way – but the future of Malaysia is ahead and we want to look forward. Granted we need to look back so we can remember but we don’t want to sow the seeds of racial disharmony in our march forwards. It was because of May 13, 1969, that all Malaysians, Malays and Chinese and Indians want to be united. But with UMNO, under the ex PM’s leadership for 22 years, pushing for Malay supremacy and treating the others who also shed blood and sweat since the British Colonial days and especially after Japanese occupation to form a free country. Not knowing any better we allowed the British to “divide and rule” and this is the downfall of the World. See everywhere the British has colonies, India, Africa, they are fighting their own countrymen. Let us now get rid of this mentality and be we Chinese, Indians, Malays and others, we are ALL first and foremost MALAYSIANS.
    At this last Election, the different races have showed their maturity and bravery by taking a stand and voting against the incumbent BN government. They gave the opposition power to act on their behalf, knowing that the Opposition came from different groups – and as is everywhere, there are good and bad… so let the good come forth and control the bad and push it out of the system. PAS may be an Islamic Party but the incumbent MB for Perak strikes me as a very educated and gentle Malay. Let’s work together for the good of all Malaysians.
    LKS, please remember you don’t have to be always voicing out and be heard. Another word of caution to LKS, remember your criticisms of Dr. M please do not emulate him.
    In a way the Opposition should also be thankful to Abdullah Badawi as in his own laidback way, he has allowed the people to take action and decide what sort of government they want and to shape their country for themselves.
    There’s a lot of work to be done in the short four years that you Opposition guys have – there’s no guarantee that you will get in the next round if you don’t prove you are more capable and transparent.

  6. RKP Says:

    I was born on Sept,1960.I recall all those days of suffering and uncertainty you talked about. The toilets were all bucket disposal system, which I dreaded most.
    My father who worked for the Birtish Army at Terendak camp,M’cca,though he was an indian,was always full of praise for LKS. He always told us to vote for DAP.He has passed away now,and if he was still around,he will surely be happy of DAP’s achievements at the 12th GE.
    We wish DAP all the best for their courage,perseverance,undying fight for justice,fairness,equality,dignity and the unity of all Malaysians.
    We wish Pakatan Rakyat to greater success for uniting Malaysians.

  7. Ismail Hijaz Says:

    The 1969 May 13th racial riots started from the house of the then Menteri Besar, Dato Harun Idris. The house was in Princes Road ( Jalan Raja Muda). ?? My foot !! The riot was started by a group of jubilant DAP supportes.. They ( multi racial – chinese and indian, minus malay) stood up on open lorry , displaying upside down broom, symbolizing a signal to malays to balik kanpung.. While they were parading near th epolice quarters, saw some policemen’s wives from the quarters hanging their wet clothing, these people pulled down their pants and show their balls to the ladies and cried” lu melayu balik kampung” It was only then Dato Harun request for a police permit citing they too want to do a victory parade.. You distorted history right from the beginning..

  8. walterquinnhall Says:

    Hi, Mr.Ismail, my friend. The fact is that this racial riot was a planed
    ahead plot which was planed by Dato Harun Idris together with the other radical UMNO leaders. And it is said that Tun Adul Razak, the deputy prime minister back then was also involed in it. About those demonstrators in the parade were mainly law abidding people, and the those who did the humble things to the ladies according to you
    , were not the proper demonstrtors but just a very small number of
    the faked demonstrators. And they were just a bunch of stupid ars-holes,nothing else. Lim Kit Siang himself is a real man and a real

  9. walterquinnhall Says:

    Futher more those demonstaters in the victory parade were not just only DAP supporters, but were composed of GERAKAN PARTY,
    PPP(=PEOPLE PROGRESS PARTY) and DAP. And they did not help themselve by going to the streets in K.L to form the parade of their own accord but they were allowed to do so by the government.
    It was under Tun Abdul Razak whose role was the acting prime
    minister between 10th May 1969 and 13th May 1969 while Tengku
    Abdullaman, the then prime minister was away to his home town in
    Kedah to wait for the result in his electoral district. Tun Abdul Razak said yes to the police to grant those opposition parties people and their followers and supporters a permit to form the victory parade when they( the opposition parties) applied for it. And Razak did it without letting Tengku know about it on purpose( as Tengku said to Razak few days ago that the victory parade is strictly prohibited).So Razak could plan the plot of the racial riot together with Dato Harun and the other UMNO radical leaders smoothly and successfully. This was because they wanted to topple Tengku from power thru the
    riot, then Razak can be the prime minister of Malaysia. Sadly, they made it so successfully. Then they got Lim Kit Siang as a scape goat
    by laying a charge against him for starting this racial riot on 13th May
    1969. What a such pretty dirty polictical game they played.

  10. Joe Says:

    walterquinnhall- How old are you?

  11. walterquinnhall Says:

    Joe- Why are you asking me my age?

  12. walterquinnhall Says:

    Hi,Joe, my friend. Why are you intrested at my age? Please reply me,thanks.

  13. mohansimon Says:

    I always look up to Mr Lim Kit Siang and his political colleagues. They always come to people rescue whenever those have hard time. My parents support DAP and so do I and my brothers and my sisters.

  14. Ahmad Aziz Says:

    Lim Kit Siang is a real Hero Of Malaysia always. I dare say he is one of the chosen few.

  15. walterquinnhall Says:

    Long live Lim Kit Siang. Long live DAP.

  16. hocheekeong Says:

    Salute to our Hero Of Malaysia, HON Mr. Lim Kit Siang.

  17. walterquinnhall Says:

    Lim Kit Siang is an outstanding, prominent politician and statesman. He and DAP have been helping people in bad situation,
    and always got the jobs well done.

  18. Ranjit Sing Says:

    Lim Kit Siang is a real hero of Malaysia.

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