August 31, 2015
COMMENT: I disagree with you, Mr Ng. Bersih 4.0 on August 29-30, 2015 is not “the nexus of negativity”. It is a gathering of thousands upon thousands of Malaysians who demand free and fair elections, and good governance. They choose to express their discontent with the Najib administration in a mature, orderly and peaceful manner.
It is not a Malay versus the Rest affair. That is what Najib and his cronies, apologists, sycophants and paid spinners would have us believe. In stead, it is a clear demonstration that Malaysian people power is alive and can no longer be ignored.
Malaysian democracy is very much in vogue. This is the most positive development from Bersih 4.0 and the significance of Merdeka 58, not the expensive display of meaningless pomp, arrogance and defiance, and pageantry which I saw on television this morning.
Those who were at Dataran Medeka and its surrounds want positive change; they want a responsible and accountable government. Read the 5 Bersih demands carefully. Because Prime Minister Najib can longer be trusted, they want him to step down. That is Demand No. 6. And it was a simple and clear message delivered in a resounding way.
Najib lacks credibility and there is a crisis of confidence and capital and financial markets are reacting negatively by dumping our stocks and shares and selling the Malaysian ringgit. Until this leadership question is settled, we face uncertainty which can lead to the worst economic crisis we have witnessed in 58 years.
How can you expect us to lay down our arms and celebrate when we know that Najib is corrupt and incompetent and the root cause of current political, social and economic problems. He cannot be trusted to focus on his duties.
Our Prime Minister is only interested in remaining in power and will stop at nothing to ensure he survives politically. And if he has to go down, he will take Malaysia with him. So, this struggle for change must be relentless; it must not stop until we succeed in our mission. Fast Forward, Bersih.
Finally, I congratulate Bersih 4.0 organisers and the Royal Malaysian Police for ensuring public order. To the Inspector-General of Police, Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, I say “terima kasih daun keladi, kalau boleh macam ini lain kali”. –Din Merican
In the Spirit of Merdeka, fast forward, Bersih
by Scott Ng
For two days, Dataran Merdeka, the place where Tunku Abdul Rahman declared our independence from the British, was the focal point of the nation. The place that celebrates our country’s greatest achievement became the nexus of this country’s negativity, expressed not by those who were against the government, but also by those who viewed the protest as unpatriotic. And the rhetoric has been ugly, to say the least.
The accusations levelled at Bersih by pro-government media and bloggers and the cries of “Where are the Malays? Don’t they care about this country too?” from the protestors defined the worst of us. They represent the basest, most repulsive urge we have, the need to blame and demonise those who are different from us. That’s ironical, for sure, given how much we harp on what it means to be Malaysian in our multi-cultural society.
Today, however, is an occasion for all Malaysians. Without Merdeka, none of us would be where we are today, in this beautiful, often schizophrenic country that somehow keeps a hold on our heartstrings no matter what is going wrong. Without the bravery of our forefathers – Malay, Chinese, Indian, Orang Asal it matters not – there would not be the Malaysia that we call home.
There is so much hate and anger in the air that we have even forgotten to celebrate Merdeka this year. This is not to say that the rakyat are angry without reason. There are indeed many reasons to be angry right now, but we must not forget that fateful day 58 years ago that our forefathers won the right to self-determination, the right to live in a way only we Malaysians can live.
Just for today, it is time to lay down arms. In the name of those who came before us, and those who sacrificed for us, this is a day to celebrate.
This day exemplifies the will of Malaysians to live a life as free as anyone else in the world, on our own terms. This day represents the end of oppression, the end of coercion, the end of having our voices ignored. It is a day of freedom and emancipation. If we do nothing else, we should be shouting Merdeka from the rooftops to reinforce the fact of our independence, and to bring to mind what we struggled against as a people.
If only just for today, let us be undivided by ideological, communal, or political lines. Let us just be a people who finds themselves on the cusp of something tremendous and who must reconnect with the same spirit that once made us great. As Merdeka leads to Malaysia Day, we must keep up our faith in what makes us who we are, and hold fast to the spirit of Merdeka, to the dream of a nation of equals, working together for the success of our grand experiment.