March 28, 2013
The Election Guessing Game: Najib needs Divine Help
by Jeswan Kaur@http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com
A nation’s election is a litmus test that reveals the aptitude of politicians; but for Malaysia, elections have become a ground for politicians to make false promises, cheat and engage in corrupt acts.
Not only that, Malaysia might just be the one and only nation where politicians treat elections like a circus, hopping onto different bandwagons as and when timing dictates.It is also in Malaysia that politicians dastardly underestimate the rakyat, treating voters at their whims and fancies.
And after 55 years of independence, leaders of this beautiful country continue to disrespect the 28 million Malaysians as is being done by the current unelected Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak who is busy keeping them in the dark about the status of the 13th general election.
Despite repeated calls for Najib to declare a date when the next general election will take place, he remains indifferent and irresponsible towards the rakyat, contradicting his claim of having the rakyat’s best interest at heart.
Judging by the Premier’s refusal to announce the election date, there is little reason for the rakyat to be convinced that the leader who keeps proclaiming that “people first” is worthy of their trust.
The election guessing game is wearing everyone out but Najib continues with his nonchalant stance.Even the call by political analysts that Najib should follow the move by his Australian counterpart Julia Gillard to declare elections earlier has fallen on deaf ears.
Either arrogance or desperation seems to be Najib’s current preoccupation, so much so that he has forgotten his duties and accountability towards the rakyat when it involves the nation’s fate.
Rakyat must make the right choice
The election hide-and-seek that Najib is taking pleasure in must teach the rakyat a lesson – that there is little the people can expect from a politician who continues to belittle their anticipation of the coming general election.
Two months ago Deputy Higher Education Minister Saifuddin Abdullah hit the nail on the head when he remarked that waiting for the announcement of the 13th general election is “unfair for all parties” and is a “lesson that must be learned by all”.
“An ideal situation is the US system where it (election date) is stated in the Constitution. Everyone has no choice but to follow the date.In the Malaysian context, it is too late for GE13 but we may be able to do something for GE14. It is bad for investors, tiring for politicians, and unfair for the rakyat if the wait is too long.Our system and Australia’s is almost the same. The date for election is not fixed by the constitution but by the government. In this case, Gillard announced it early and we should follow suit,” Saifuddin had said.
Two months later and Najib continues to play Russian roulette in determining the country’s well-being.
Najib, BN lacking confidence
Using its position as the Federal government, the Barisan Nasional coalition continues to yield the upper hand by delaying the general election date; Malaysia serves as a classic example where the BN government witholds information on when the elections will be held.
The never-ending guessing game being played by the Najib leadership in sharing the election date with the voters is also a sign of the BN administration’s faltering confidence in facing the coming general election, slated to be its most challenging thus far.
BN’s lack of confidence is not the rakyat’s concern – what bothers the people is that the continued delays in announcing the election date will only cause them hardship when it comes to applying for leave to vote or serve as election monitors to ensure the elections are held in a free and fair manner.
In this respect, Najib who is also BN chief is on a wicked ‘mischief’ when with each passing day he refuses to disclose the election date; it is his desperate tactic to deny the opposition Pakatan Rakyat alliance ample time and opportunity to do their homework in preparing for and facing the 13th general election.
At the BN supreme council meeting which Najib chaired in January this year, the Premier had said that the distribution of seats among BN component parties and the list of candidates for the 13th general election had almost been finalised.
But on the pretext of buying more time, Najib claimed that the selection needed further scrutiny to make sure the candidates were of the right choice, not just from the aspect of capability but acceptance in the constituency they would be contesting.
“We will decide and make the announcement. There are some views that we need to discuss but have not made any decision yet.
Asked then of the possibility that Parliament would be dissolved simultaneously with the Johor state assembly on March 21, this was what Najib had to say:
“We will know when the time comes. We are still guessing, never mind go ahead and guess. I like this guessing game.”
While the rakyat keeps wondering when the 13th general election will finally take place, Najib continues to shift gears in placating the people, trying all means possible to “buy” their trust.
Jeswan Kaur is a freelance writer and a FMT columnist.