Former deputy minister P. Waytha Moorthy (pic) today apologised to the Indian community for his failure to improve their livelihood, a week after he quit the Najib administration in frustration.
In his first official statement after his resignation, the Hindraf chairman and former deputy minister in the Prime Minister’s Department “apologised unconditionally" to the Indian community for not being able to fulfil the socio-economic programmes which it had pledged after signing a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Barisan Nasional (BN) just before the 13th general election.
The ruling coalition then had promised to resolve the chronic socio-economic problems afflicting the community if BN was returned to power with Hindraf's support.
“Now, 10 months later, Hindraf is not able to fulfil any of the pledges we had made to the Indian poor. We know this will be disappointing to many of the poor people who had trusted us and voted for the BN, hoping positive changes will happen in their lives if BN won.
“I take full ownership for this failure. For the last eight months I had tried patiently to work with the PM to roll out the programmes agreed to in the agreement, but we have not been able to move even on one item in the MoU.
"I make no excuses for our failure; I take full ownership for the failure and its consequences,” he said in a statement.
Waytha said Hindraf had entered into the MoU hoping Putrajaya would understand the true problems facing the community.
“By getting the prime minister and BN to publicly endorse their commitment, we earnestly believed they would keep their promises.
“At that time, we thought we would be able to carry out the various socio-economic programmes as we will be mandated to carry out the reforms on our own with the necessary budget and unit,” he said.
Waytha had been described as a “broken man” as a result of Putrajaya's failure to implement any of the pledges.
He also had a public spat with his brother, lawyer Uthayakumar, when he signed the MoU.
"Waytha hijacked Hindraf and pledged support to BN, which is against the founding principles of Hindraf," Uthayakumar, who was one of the five who served time under the Internal Security Act, had said at the time.
"Do not vote for BN. Whether they want to vote for Pakatan Rakyat (PR) is up to them, but Hindraf will not take responsibility for Pakatan's non-delivery if they get to Putrajaya."
Uthayakumar is currently serving a 30-month jail sentence after he was found guilty of sedition last June.
The legality of Waytha's appointment as senator, along with four others who were made minister and deputy ministers, was also questioned.
However, the High Court ruled that the appointments of Datuk Seri Abdul Wahid Omar and Datuk Paul Low Seng Kuan as ministers in the Prime Minister's Department, and deputy ministers Waytha, Dr Loga Balan Mohan Jaganathan and Ahmad Bashah Hani were constitutional.
In August last year, Waytha had come under fire when he alleged that five Indian criminals in Penang were shot "execution-style" by police.
Waytha was admonished by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak and cabinet members Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein and told to toe the line. – February 17, 2014.