Posted by: raishussin | December 27, 2016

IT’S TIME TO DRAIN THE SWAMP

 

  1. For, perhaps the very first time since our independence from colonial rule, the Rakyat enjoys a viable alternative to UMNO/BN rule. The voting trend in the last two General Elections foretold the coming of this day, but the humongous scale of scandals plaguing the current administration has hastened it.
  2. While Malaysia’s minority communities have political parties representing their interests, they never had any pretension to winning a federal mandate, though some have already demonstrated the efficacy of their administration at the state level.
  3. Rather than inspiring UMNO, Pakatan Harapan and Democratic Action Party’s (DAP) rule in Penang has instead hardened their stance against them, with the leader Lim Guan Eng being charged for alleged corruption on technical grounds while letting 1MDB office bearers, who lost billions and counting, to go scot free, so far.
  4. Or at best, 1MDB investigation is in ‘perpetuity’ in Malaysia, while request for Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) from Switzerland Office of Attorney General is denied on the ground of ‘subjudice’. Yes, you read it right ‘subjudice’ as the “investigation” is still on-going in Malaysia.
  5. When the opposition Members of the Parliament, and even the former Finance Minister 2, who is still in UMNO/BN tried to questioned the scandalous 1MDB deals, the Speaker of the Parliament cited the same reason ‘subjudice’ (as the case is being administered by the Department of Justice (DoJ) in the US), to stop the deliberation or debate on 1MDB in the Malaysian Parliament. So going forward, anyone wants to stop the debate on any scandals in the Parliament, just initiate a legal action in a foreign jurisdiction. Easy isn’t !
  6. Laughable, but this is the reality of democracy, ala UMNO-BN in 2016. Yes, in the year 2016, the rape and destruction of the Malaysian democratic institutions is complete.
  7. UMNO’s “safety net” has always been its Malay bedrock, who have never had a mainstream party alternative. Malays have been told for decades that only UMNO can ensure that their collective interests are upheld; not just economic interests, but also social and religious.
  8. The death of UMNO means the death of Malays, the death of UMNO means the death of Islam, they cried wolf. And when all get bad-to -worse, the convenient battle cry — Islam, Unity and Sovereignty is used (or abused) with grandiose props, music even soothing Quranic verses and Hadiths as the back ground multimedia.
  9. The sudden burst of Arabic terminologies in the speeches made by UMNO leaders and war lords in the recent UMNO General Assembly, manifests such an attempt, but mostly quoting Quran and Hadiths, out of context by thousands of miles, if not billions, as UMNO is very fond of billions, these days.
  10. So it is very critical for any opposition alliance to debunk the myth that only UMNO can represent the Malays. Kelantan, Penang and Selangor, have not been under UMNO/BN for at least 2 consecutive parliamentary terms, and the Malays did not die in these states. They actually prospered. Actually, UMNO need the Malays, not the Malays need UMNO.
  11. On the other hand, the opposition alliance big brother, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) is seen as too liberal and to some, too secular, though that is far cry from the truth. While, Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (PAS) is seen as not a representative of the mainstream Malay Muslims for their Islamists conservative stance, which is again a far cry from the truth. Then we have Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah), an offshoot of PAS, with a progressive Islamists stance, that has just celebrated its first year of its existence.
  12. To add to this mixture of colors, for the first time, another Malay-based political party, led by Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamed (former PM of Malaysia and President of UMNO for 22 years) and Tan Sri Muhyddin Yassin (former Deputy PM of Malaysia and Deputy President of UMNO), Parti Peribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM) offers an alternative choice for Malays, dispelling the myth that UMNO is their only pony in the race.
  13. Still, it’s hardly a foregone conclusion that a coalition with PPBM, PKR, DAP, Amanah, and even PAS can actually accomplish the feat of unseating UMNO/BN and its all-powerful chieftains. Just look at the results of the state-election in Sarawak, and the two by-elections in Perak and Selangor, respectively. UMNO has deep pockets, vast infrastructure, and all the tools of the ruling authority, which it wields not only with blunt force but with impunity. The power of incumbency, they say.
  14. If the opposition runs their own candidates in line with their own distinct manifestoes, then the wolves of UMNO will pick them off like so many scattered sheep. In order to win a national mandate, the flock must band together tightly. There is safety in numbers only if the coalition remains united. Real UNITED with new hope and new deal – the true Barisan Rakyat (The Peoples’ Front)
  15. The coalition must band together with the simple common aim of wresting power from the incumbent. Given that the ground is so very fertile, all indications are that the people will be with them, and will endorse this milestone opportunity to engender much needed change and reform into the legislative and institutional bodies of the Nation, which have been compromised beyond belief under the current leadership. Yes, the ground is fertile, very fertile indeed, but will the opposition alliance have the wherewithal to be the credible alternative? I think for the very first time, they do.
  1. What this means is one identity for the coalition, one branding, one logo, and most, most important: ONE candidate.
  2. One-on-one contests with UMNO/BN candidates are the only sure-shot means of securing the numbers to displace UMNO/BN. If there was ever a time to set aside party politics in favor of common good of the Rakyat, then it is now, in preparation for the next General Election.
  3. The opposition coalition – Barisan Rakyat, must be magnanimous in seats negotiations taking into considerations the ultimate aim of winning the election. It is not an intelligent pursuit to hard negotiate the maximum number of seats for each party in the opposition coalition, but not being able to win collectively.
  4. The focus must remain to win the election, to form the next government and save the nation. Hence, the magnanimous seat negotiations based on win-ability, is critical so there will not be eleventh hour saboteurs amongst the coalition. We saw how it failed monumentally in Sarawak State election to the great joy of Barisan Nasional (BN).
  5. The over-riding aim must be, to win the election, form the government and save the Nation. Period. There will be time aplenty to jockey for self-serving interests in future; today look towards securing the Nation’s future instead. Power sharing can be in many forms. Not just Parliamentary or State seats. People around the world have demolished the status quo in favor of new uncharted terrain, none less than the leading Western democracies of Britain and the United States.
  6. It is time to drain the swamp.
  7. England cut itself off from the EU, and America from common sense itself, but the people spoke and the Nation-State survived the expression of their will. In comparison, the choice in Malaysia is simple. If UMNO/BN retains the government it will take years and maybe decades to turn the hand, back on the ill-effects of massive corruption, loss of political freedoms, compromise of state institutions, confidence in the judiciary, and ridicule from our global peers. Day by day the situation gets worse and the recovery time elongated. To paraphrase Trump’s brash message in his bid for the American Presidency:  “Your leaders have failed you. What do you have to lose by trying something new?”
  8. So there are two very important questions to ask: a) To the opposition coalition, are you ready to be the real Credible Alternative? b) To the people of Malaysia, are you ready for a change?
  9. If the answers to both questions are, a resounding yes, then Malaysia can and will be saved. Hard work, but can be saved, as democracy is indeed, hard work. But if the answers are no for both or any one of the questions, Malaysia is in deep waters, deep trouble!
  10. Think and Reflect WISELY !

 

 

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