ROMPIN - Although the number of Chinese voters in Rompin is only 1,352, a show of unity by voting Barisan Nasional in the by-election can be a signal of rejection of PAS' hudud plan, said MCA president Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai.
The Rompin by-election, he said, could be an indicator to the country that the Chinese community did not support hudud.
"The whole country is watching how the Chinese community in Rompin votes. There are not many of us here, but the more than 1,000 Chinese votes are still important because they can tell PAS leaders clearly that they do not have our support in bringing this country down their hudud path.
"Hudud is something we cannot support because it will not only affect us but our future generations as well," Liow said at a dinner with some 400 Chinese voters here on Wednesday night.
Liow also warned of the dangers of religious extremism like those displayed by the Islamic State (IS) group.
"When the whole world is combating IS and its violent ways, we see PAS and its president using a different method in pushing our country towards becoming a syariah-governed nation.
"This is a dangerous path to tread on and it will bring our country backwards," he said.
Barisan candidate Datuk Hasan Arifin is facing PAS' Nazri Ahmad in the by-election following the death of its MP Tan Sri Dr Jamaluddin Jarjis in a helicopter crash.
Yesterday, Liow, who was in Rompin to campaign for Barisan, said MCA would continue to gather feedback and engage the people ahead of polling on May 5.
He said most people he met on his rounds knew Hasan and were at ease with him.
"I hope they will support him to bring more development to Rompin. Hasan is very determined and sensitive to the needs of the people here," he said.
Yesterday, Liow, who is also Transport Minister, said the Kuala Rompin jetty would be upgraded for the benefit of boat operators and tourists.
At present, he said some 40 to 50 boats were operating at the jetty.
"These operators are bringing local and international anglers to the sea for billfishing activities. Rompin is famous for this unique attraction, which has drawn many foreign visitors yearly," he said.
Billfishing involves the catching of fish such as marlin or sailfish, which can grow up to 4m long.
To bring in even more visitors, Liow said the jetty needed to be rebuilt and upgraded with better facilities, adding that an allocation would be sought from the Federal Government.
"We will work together with the state government to create more economic opportunities for the people," he said.
On another matter, Liow said Rompin farmers were also seeking his help to expand their farms, whose fruits and vegetables were mainly for the export market.