Friday, December 08, 2017

With too much power in its hands, BN risks complacency(Malaysiakini)

With too much power in its hands, BN risks complacency

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COMMENT | I have been taking a breather by focusing on food reviews, thinking that I could come back with a more balanced view of both BN and Pakatan Harapan.

Sadly, my perspectives and observations have not changed, and I am not expecting things to change for the better for BN.

In fact, what is most damaging so far to the ruling coalition is the claim by the US Attorney-General Jeff Sessions that the alleged misappropriation of funds from 1MDB is kleptocracy at its worst”.

While both coalitions have good and the ugly sides at the same time - to be fair, there is no perfect organisation or political party so long as we are still humans - but to allow alleged kleptocrats to continue to ruin this country is one of the biggest sins.

Islamist party PAS, which is supposed to apply a check-and-balance on its rival party Umno has also lost its bearing under the leadership of its president, Abdul Hadi Awang. PAS’ suit against Sarawak Report editor, Clare Rewcastle-Brown has also opened a new can of worms with regards to the 1MDB scandal.

This is what baffles me, to think that there is too much power on one side to the point that BN no longer cares about its own public image in order to win the support of its voters.

Alleged kleptocrats are allowed to get away scot-free while someone like Siti Noor Aishah Atam was sentenced to five years' imprisonment for having a few books for her own academic research work. These books were never banned by Malaysia anyway.

As Malaysian human rights activist Charles Hector argues, the ruling is not only unjust, but is also seriously flawed. “Amongst others,” Hector points out, “there is a lack of mens rea (intention) in this offence - a flaw which was supposed to be remedied in an amendment, but which is yet to be done.”

Unbridled tongues 

Despite the bad guys making the most noise, the people in the corridors of power are turning a blind eye to these agent provocateurs.

We have seen how these people are allowed to taunt ordinary citizens and make all sorts of threats. Some are even lacking in morality.

For example, the “butt exercises” in front of the home of former Bersih co-chair, Ambiga Sreenevasan, which involved Mohd Ali Baharom or Ali Tinju, a former soldier who has since been booted out of the Malaysian Armed Forces Veteran Association (PVTM), and yet was spared from being charged with any form of criminal intimidation.

Others, including the elder brother of former inspector-general of police Khalid Abu Bakar, have yet to face the music for creating a ruckus in front of a church in Taman Medan.

Now, when Umno Sungai Besar division leader, Jamal Md Yunos claims that he will expose a PKR Youth leader’s unusual wealth, some of us may applaud.

However, what does Jamal have to say about the 1MDB scandal that has brought embarrassment to the nation? So far, he has simply avoided talking about the scandal.

Enough is said, no one pays attention to him anymore except to highlight the silly things that he is saying, just to make everyone squirm whenever we read about his latest antics. There are many others whom I do not need to mention; in fact, they are not worth mentioning at all.

When we see these agent provocateurs appear to be invincible, we ourselves can only arrive at one conclusion: the people in Putrajaya are no longer happy to uphold justice. There is simply too much power on one side that the other side does not have the means to exercise.

Because the good guys in BN are still remaining silent and oblivious, it is those who bark the loudest that get the most limelight.

Sometimes, it drives us up the wall when we read howling comments by these “political hyenas” which are literally turning our country’s political arena into somewhat of a circus.

Changing patterns

Likewise, as I look at it, MCA, MIC and Gerakan do not have good young leaders (you know them from the way they speak); whereas Umno’s younger batch of leaders are still thinking that the keris is mightier than the ability to influence.

This is the reason why most of the younger generation of leaders have flocked towards Harapan, and this is where I can see the uniting forces at work with Sabahans and Sarawakians in the next general election.

Sabahans and Sarawakians, unlike their political masters on the peninsula, are more liberal in their outlook.

The undercurrents in East Malaysia, especially Sabah, may yet bring us bigger surprises compared to the political tsunami of 2008, as the younger generation of Sabahans and Sarawakians are now more exposed to the world. Therefore, unless BN revamps itself, it will become obsolete in no time.

With too much power on its side, BN is in danger of becoming obsolete altogether if it does not quickly revamp its own international image. As Malaysians, we are equally exposed to the 1MDB scandal, and perhaps more so than the international community since news about the Malaysian sovereign wealth fund is highlighted in the media nearly every day.

STEPHEN NG is an ordinary citizen with an avid interest in following political developments in the country since 2008.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

Note: The above is an opinion of another, and it is posted here in the interest of promoting freedom of expression and opinion. Not necessarily I support all of the points and arguments made.. It is important to know and consider opinions and views of other human certainly helps us all...

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