State Assemblyperson Gan Peck Cheng, Yong Peng State Assemblyperson Chew Peck Choo, Senai State Assemblyperson Wong Shu Qi and Johor Jaya State Assemblyperson Liow Cai Tung on 12th April 2014 (Saturday):
Johore MCA deputy chairman Tee Siew Kiong should retract his male chauvinist statement and apologize to Malaysian women on his discriminatory opinions.
We deeply regret that Datuk Tee Siew Kiong, the EXCO for Johor tourism, domestic trade and consumerism uttered a sexist statement against women on Thursday when commented on the childcare issue raised up by five Pakatan Rakyat MPs in the parliament.
According to Bernama, he was reported saying in a program, which was held in Kluang, that “If they cannot resolve petty family issues, how are they going to settle the problems of the people and country?”
More specifically, he named Kulai MP Sdri. Teo Nie Ching and criticized her by questioning why would she want to be a MP if she can’t even take care of her kids.
The statement is utterly sexist and discriminative against women. We are surprised that he seems to not understand gender equality when it is the principle upheld globally especially by high-income North European countries.
To ensure our next generation able to grow up in a healthy social environment, most of the countries with developed economics agree that parenting is not only the responsibility of mother but also father, or even the government should share the burden with setting up childcare centre.
The OECD report in 2012 revealed that most women in developed countries quit working after marriage or having a child, yet, Denmark is the only exception with consistently growing women labour participation following by age.We notice that even Japan and Korea that are notorious with their gender inequality are having much higher female labour participation than Malaysia.
Korean female labour participation rate dropped below 60% at the age group of 25-29, the marriageable age while Japan has about 70% even it decreased. On the other hand, Malaysian female labour participation rate had reached 45% in mid-80’s and we have never broken through the 50% bottleneck for about 30 years. Today, our female labour force remained at 46%.
In other words, the authority does not take highly educated young labour force seriously although we have more female students enrolled into tertiary education institutions than male students.
I doubt if Datuk Tee Siew Kiong, the deputy chairman of Johore MCA has heard about “Abenomics” promoted by Shinzo Abe, the Japan Prime Minister, which basically admitted that increase of women participation in workforce would eventually bring positive impact to the national economics.
Meanwhile, Barisan Nasional leaders ask Malaysian women to stay home to take care of their children instead of fulfilling their responsibility as a politician to promote childcare centre at workplace. The sexist approach taken by BN leaders lead to heavier burden on young families and low women participation in workforce, which has a negative impact on Malaysia economic.
Most of the young parents nowadays understand that parenting is not only the responsibility of the mother but also the father, government is not only helping women with promoting childcare centre at workplace but also helping father and all young parents, and eventually it would contribute to our economic growth.
Tee Siew Kiong seems to not understand the correlation between our middle-income trap and the female labour participation rate, hence he utters sexist statement like women should not be involved in public affairs unless she has fulfilled her parenting responsibility as if men have no responsibility on children at all.
This is the worst male-chauvinist statement and discriminatory opinion against women. As the Johore MCA deputy chairman and EXCO for Johor tourism, domestic trade and consumerism, Tee Siew Kiong should retract his male chauvinist statement and apologise to Malaysian women on his discriminatory opinions.
Gan Peck Cheng
Chew Peck Choo
Wong Shu Qi
Liow Cai Tung