The saga of the deregistration of the Malacca Chinese Assembly Hall has finally ended with its successful appeal to the Registrar of Societies.
Deputy Minister of Home Affairs, Lee Chee Leong, conveyed the good news in a letter from the Ministry of Home Affairs, stating that the re-registration of the Malacca Chinese Assembly Hall is unconditional, thus finally cooling off this hot Chinese community issue that has lasted half-a-month.
All the committee members of the Malacca Chinese Assembly Hall celebrated the decision by gathering to open the doors of the assembly hall after being banned since earlier this month. The president, Chen Nam Yee, thanked all of the national Chinese associations which had supported its cause. He also thanked Lee for his full committment and effort to restore the association’s legal identity.
Meanwhile, Pheng Yin Huah, president of Federation of Chinese Associations Malaysia (Hua Zong) in his media statement congratulated the Malacca Chinese Assembly Hall on its success, which can now run its social welfare activities as usual. He mentioned that the incident was a good lesson for all Chinese associations in running their annual general meetings, and paying greater attention to their respective memoranda and articles of association.
Pheng however also said the government should revise the authority given to the Registrar of Societies, noting that the decision to deregister a state-level Chinese association because of a technical oversight (a lack of quorum) was an unfair one.
The association, who said, could have been ordered to convene another meeting instead of being asked to cease activities altogether. The Malacca Chinese Assembly Hall, he further noted, had not committed a serious crime, neither cheating nor violence, and had done nothing to disturb social harmony.
Meanwhile, the Malacca Chinese Assembly Hall’s recovery of its registration and legal identity is meaningful as it has been selected as the organiser of the next National Chinese Cultural Festival.