Kedah Politics: UMNO-BN needs a new Leader


March 31, 2012

Kedah Politics: UMNO-BN needs a new Leader

by Rashid Ahmad (03-30-12)@http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com

Kedah Barisan Nasional (BN) has lost a chance to shake the PAS-led Pakatan Rakyat state government when it did not “exploit” the recent crisis in the state administration. Political observers said the internal conflict in Kedah PAS had split the party and made it “vulnerable” to outside attacks but BN did not seize the opportunity, thus making it difficult for BN to retake the state.

Kedah PAS, say some political observers, is being manipulated by two main players keen to helm the state administration and also by “outside forces”.They said Menteri Besar Azizan Abdul Razak, who is from the old school of thoughts, is aligned to party president Abdul Hadi Awang. He is seen as the leader of the “fundamentalists” and is fighting hard against attempts from the liberals to take over the state administration.

Azizan’s “foes from within” – Kedah PAS Deputy Commissioner (I) Phahrolrazi Zawawi and Kedah PAS Deputy Commissioner (II) Ismail Salleh – are aligned to the liberals and they striving to push Azizan out. Words have it that the main reason for the attempted “mutiny” against Azizan is to find a place for Party Deputy President Mohamed Sabu to contest in the upcoming general election.

Mohamed Sabu or Mat Sabu, as he is popularly known, is said to be seeking for a seat in Kedah as he is not wanted in Kelantan, where he once stood as MP and won. The crisis, though resolved, is still a pain in the neck for PAS as Azizan is said to be still sticking to his decision not to entertain or recognise Phahrolrazi and Ismail as followers in the state administration.

Credible leader

So the split in PAS still exists but BN has failed to exploit it to enhance its chances of diluting PAS influence among the fence-sitters in the state.A political analyst, Ramli Mohd Yunus, said another BN weakness in the state was its failure to appoint a credible leader to lead Kedah as Menteri Besar if it comes back to power.

“Apologising [to the people for BN's mistakes in the past] is one thing but the main thrust is to win back the hearts and minds of the voters, particularly Malays. This can be achieved if BN has picked a credible, MB-material leader who will helm the state if the coalition wins.

“Kedah Malays, including the Chinese who have blended well with the Malay culture, know past and present BN and UMNO leaders in the state very well.They want to hear and see from the Prime Minister himself who he picks to lead the state. The way I see it, if Najib picks the wrong man, the votes will go to the other side.If Najib picks the man they respect and know, then the votes will go to BN. So it’s the man who will lead the state as menteri besar that matters now, not issues,” he said.

Even BN leaders in Kuala Lumpur share the same views. Observers believe that Mukhriz Mahathir is the man who could gain the voters’ confidence.

Matter of personality

Ramli said that he too has heard from the grassroots members in the state and also from some Chinese voters that Mukhriz (left) is the man best suited to take over should PAS fall.

“Kedah Malays and even some Chinese still hold Dr Mahathir Mohamad in high regard and obviously they also respect his son Muhkriz.What they told me is that Muhkriz is a new man and even though he is naïve in politics, he has the charisma to lead the state. Moreover, he is clean. But BN must also not ignore Dr Mahathir in its campaign because from what I gathered from the grassroots members, his presence may bring Kedah back to BN,” Ramli said.

However, there are some local leaders in Kedah who would not take too kindly to Mukhriz’s elevation if Najib decides to tap his shoulder. But Ramli believes the resentment was normal and would fade in time.

“The important point here is that Kedah BN needs a charismatic leader, a new man who has no record whatsoever. In this case, if it’s Mukhriz, it will be easier to win the hearts and minds of the voters because they still respect his father,” Ramli said. “So in my opinion half the battle will be won if Najib picks Mukhriz,” he added.

Thus, the battle for BN in Kedah is a matter of personality – the man who will lead the state after the general election. It all depends on Najib who he wants in the driver’s seat. After all, BN Kedah needs just four more seats to win the state. BN now has 16 out of the 36 state seats (UMNO has 14, MCA one and Gerakan one).

17 thoughts on “Kedah Politics: UMNO-BN needs a new Leader

  1. UMNO Kedah must rally behind Mukhriz to win back the state from PAS. This is also the feedback I got from fellow Kedahans in Alor Setar. Tun Dr. Mahathir is highly regarded by all in the state. Furthermore, Mukhriz is a man who can lead Kedah well, they believe.–Din Merican

  2. “Mohamed Sabu or Mat Sabu, as he is popularly known, is said to be seeking for a seat in Kedah as he is not wanted in Kelantan, where he once stood as MP and won.”

    Kedah has no need for carpetbaggers.PAS should resist fielding somebody like Mat Sabu.

  3. “Kedah Malays and even some Chinese still hold Dr Mahathir Mohamad in high regard and obviously they also respect his son Muhkriz.What they told me is that Muhkriz is a new man and even though he is naïve in politics, he has the charisma to lead the state. Moreover, he is clean.”

    “Clean” as in you do not know. Yep. I can go along with that.

  4. Hang Mongkut Bean,

    I wonder if the sikh community in Kedah will stand behind Mukhriz. Let us ask our sikh brother, Gurubachan–Din Merican

  5. I am Kedahan Chinese, we blended well with the Malays in Kedah. This Ramli Yunus, if it is the same guy who was formerly a DAP member who gives his opinions, I would advise that he better counter check his source and instinct. MB Azizan may be weak but not PAS. I will travel back 450 km to Kedah and vote for PAS, the same goes for my family members.

  6. If Kedah is back in BN folds next GE and if Mukhriz contested and won a state seat and is appointed MB; it could only mean the ‘other’ faction in UMNO is strong enough to put him in ‘cold storage’ away from national politics, for at least 4-5 years.

    Mukhriz has higher aspiration than just the mere post of MB Kedah. He wants to take an express lift up the national leadership whilst his father is still able to push his weight around. Mahathir’s other sons are already established in business with Mokhzani the billionaire recently getting a strong foothold in the lucrative O&G field, with his father as adviser to Petronas playing a role in it. It now remains for another son to establish himself in national politics to jumpstart his family dynasty. What woe will further befall Malaysia ?

    What a shame Kedahans with their false pride are besotted with Mahathir’s progeny. Mahathir and his compatriots like Daim and Sanusi Junid have not really done much for Kedah. And whatever the sentiments of Kedahans, Malaysians on the whole now viewed them in a negative light. They are not even when put together, one iota like the beloved Tunku Abdul Rahman. Tunku in spite of his personal vices, is held in high esteem by all Malaysians. Unfortunately at present, Kedahans lack good leaders from both sides of the political divide.

  7. “Tunku in spite of his personal vices, is held in high esteem by all Malaysians”

    My Tok Tam’s fondness for wine, women and songs (later translated to whiskey, poker and horses) is a mirror image of the freedom Malaysians enjoyed at one time and in an era now lost to the ages.

    Those days the young Din Merican could hope to play hookie and sneak into the Amusement Park next to Rex Cinema and play pocket billiard. At other times when there was a good movie playing, he would put his entrepreneural skills to good use. Parking bicycles for 10 cents a piece for each show those days would have made him a Syed Mokhtar Al-Bukhary if he kept at it long enough. Aloq Setaq was a sleepy hollow those days – uneventful, sleepy and there was nothing much to do even on a hot lazy afternoon. There was of course the kerbau in padi fields wallowing in the mud to keep itself cool. The town’s tranquillity would be disturbed occasionally when ramvhong came to town and Aloq Setaq’s only Wat Siam would be up in lights and the crowd would be like a swarm of insects attracted to artificial light. Young Deano, would be in his elements, dressed in jeans and rolled up short sleeves and raised collar and hair greased and combed backwards (John Travolta style except that it was James Dean) would take to the stage and fritter away his earnings as a young entrepreneur in exchange for the affection of his favourite rhamvong gal – all this unknown to his dotting mother, Aloq Setaq’s Florence Nightingale. Besides that nothing much happened in this sleepy hollow that Aloq Setaq was in the ’50s.

    Kedah was later to give many of the nation’s illustrious sons in the service of the country and none, at least to me, is more illustrious than the Tunku. There have been many Tunkus (and Tengkus) who have come and gone since but every Malaysian across the generations would know who we are referring to when we say “the Tunku”. Some of us know him as the play boy prince who married his English landlady’s daughter and who later took a Thai-Chinese as his second wife having quietly divorced the first, and who practiced what he preached which is to be racially tolerant. Tlhe Tunku had left us a legacy that all Malaysians could be proud of. He set a high bar for politicians which none has cleared.

    I do not know how things are in my home state under a PAS administration. But in my days PAS with their parochial view of the world, steeped in their religious ways, was largely frowned upon. I am not convinced it has changed much. The recent make-over is but a make-over and like all make-overs it is only skin deep.

  8. I wonder if the sikh community in Kedah will stand behind Mukhriz. Let us ask our sikh brother, Gurubachan–Din Merican

    Awta Singh may or may not stand behind Mukhriz. But you can count on Bendover Singh.

  9. “If Kedah is back in BN folds next GE and if Mukhriz contested and won a state seat and is appointed MB; it could only mean the ‘other’ faction in UMNO is strong enough to put him in ‘cold storage’ away from national politics, for at least 4-5 years”

    Syed Nahar is a good example. Like a loyal UMNO footsoldier , he accepted it abeit reluctantly. The rest is history.

  10. Makcik same old sick parrot, parroting the same line “Comment deleted” over and over. It’s about time someone teaches him some other words – like “Spank me”.

  11. What woe will further befall Malaysia ?

    Jamal Majid – March 31, 2012 at 6:47 pm

    How apt this observation

  12. There are SO many more other personaltites the Kedahans can be bessotted with, they had to choose Mahathir. Hello wake up Kedah. Theya re smarter than this. theres dato’ Din, theres Art Harun, there’s the Sultans daughter who I am told is to highly aware and contributes to many cuases and is therefore to be emulated. There are plenty others.

    C’mon Kedah not this clan again.

  13. Bean’s biographical snippet of Dato’s exploits in Alor Star reminds me of an incident, in 1965, I think. It was Chinese New Year and the party was in full swing on the top floor of some Bus Company building – when in the horizon, a fire started to rage. It was a mother of a bonfire as we later learnt that a village was burnt to the ground.

    Can anyone remember that fire?

  14. Tun Razak was sighing about how Najib couldn’t….Sanusi Junid asked: “Why Tun?” And Tun Razak replied: “Too much skirt chasing.” Read more: http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/category/opinion/2011/09/03/najib-is-politically-finished/#ixzz21sUuAaWQ His way of solving problems is by paying his way through with $. Your PM should have been impeached for treason long ago. He is destroying M’sia. BN/UMNO will LOSE BIG. For those low lives & criminals, God’ s nemesis will prevail. Look at Gaddafi , then Assad, when Syrians wanted fair & free elections, Assad said there were foreign terrorists wanting to topple the Gov’t… now he kills them. Gaddafi and Assad weren’t even democratically elected! Just like your PM – handed down from Daddy! Even watching from afar, we have reached the brink now: We call the most horrific curse on these criminals. The people’s power, the people’s day will come.

  15. How long would Mahathir, Najib, Taib all the BN/UMNO/PBB cronies, MACC, Police chiefs last in a democratic country like NZ, Aus, UK, US or Canada? 1 month? In a neutral position, we see clearly your 55 years of tragedy. PBB, UMNO & BN are corrupt, criminal and evil to the bones. A hundred US$ billion, not million, have been stolen, plundered or mismanaged according to analysts. Massive corruption eg: The CM ruling 31 years in Sarawak. Controlling 3 prime portfolios: Chief Minister, Finance Minister & Planning and Resources Minister, having his finger in everything in Sarawak. The world is calling for his arrest & PM Najib pretends everything is beautiful, saying: Promises fulfilled!

  16. RM200 million for your PM’s new plane. RM3 mil for his & Rosmah’s recent trip but official plane also landed in Milan & Dubai -the capitals of super-luxury goods. Mahathir’s sons are directors of 200 companies and drive some of the most expensive cars in the world eg the Ferrari Enzo & the RM5.5million Bugatti Veyron….Why is Taib still the Sarawak’s CM after 31 years? Controlling 3 prime portfolios: Chief Minister, Finance Minister & Planning and Resources Minister, having his finger in everything in Sarawak. His daughter in law’s divorce claim alone is RM400million. His cronies all live in palaces & Mansions; many men in the street can’t even buy a car, let alone a house ! Natives in Sarawak had their land grabbed from them, many don’t even have electricity & good drinking water. Hell is awaiting !

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