Is Anwar Ibrahim really our great white hope


January 18, 2019

Is Anwar Ibrahim really our great white hope?

Opinion  | by Mariam Mokhtar

 

  “Anwar seems to have one face for speaking in Malaysia and another for speaking when he is abroad. So, who is the real Anwar Ibrahim, and can we trust him’?”–Mariam Mokhtar

COMMENT by Mariam Mokhtar

http://www.malaysiakini.com

Their leader, Anwar Ibrahim, told England’s newspaper The Guardian that he would “…root out corruption and end a system of affirmative action for ethnic Malays…” if he were toform the next government.

Remember this word, “end”.

Soon after the GE-14 win, on May 10, 2018, Anwar was pardoned and released from prison.

On May 17, he told Associated Press (AP) that affirmative action policies for Malays must be discarded in favour of a new programme to help the poor, regardless of race.

Anwar said, “I have said that the NEP should be dismantled, but the affirmative action must be more effective. I believe that poor, underprivileged Malays will benefit more through a transparent, effective affirmative action policy than the New Economic Policy which has been hijacked to enrich a few cronies.”

What happened to the word “end”, which he mentioned in 2008?

Politicians make all sorts of promises, many of which they know they cannot keep. Why should Anwar be any different? What a pity that in Malaysia Baru politicians continue to pander to the ultra-sensitive Malays.

So, how does one unite a nation, when one section of the community is treated like ‘Little Emperors’, while the rest of the population is told to get on with the limited resources available?

On January 13, at a dinner to celebrate his win as president of PKR, Anwar urged the non-Malays to understand the concerns of the Malays and bumiputeras, who feared that their rights and position would be threatened.

Instead, Anwar should have highlighted the betrayal and exploitation of some Malays by other Malays. He should have mentioned Tabung Haji, Felda, Mara, the silence of the previous Malay-majority cabinet about the scandal involving 1MDB, and embezzlement in the various ministries by senior civil servants. Malays were at the helm of these institutions.

Another Pandora’s Box

For decades, PAS and UMNO Baru made the outrageous claim that the non-Malays, specifically the Chinese, wanted to destroy the nation, make it Christian and get rid of Islam and Muslims. The real enemy is within the Malay fold. We have yet to investigate the alleged corruption of the money donated to mosques, or tahfiz schools, which will open another Pandora’s Box.

Affirmative action policies make Malays weak, arrogant and dependent upon handouts. If the selection criteria for army recruits were to be lowered, we would have snowflakes defending the nation. A lowering of the examination pass mark, for the Malays, is self-defeating. The Malays cannot thrive in an environment which stifles competition and creativity. In the law of the jungle, only the fittest and those who are willing to adapt will survive.

In his monthly assembly speech at the Prime Minister’s Department, Dr Mahathir Mohamad said that Malaysia had not achieved true unity ‘despite six decades of independence, because each race wanted to maintain their own culture and heritage’. He said, “We accept the fact that we cannot be a country where the people identify themselves as one race.”

Mahathir is confused by the definition of “race”. How can the rakyat identify themselves as Malaysians when they are discriminated against with race-based policies for housing, schools, universities, business loans and more. Get rid of affirmative action policies and help all Malaysians, irrespective of skin colour or religion. Get rid of the bangsa and agama (race and religion) on our identity card.

So, is Anwar the great white hope?

The taxi drivers seem to think so. Najib could not help them, nor Mahathir. Taxi drivers fail to comprehend that they need to change their attitudes, to improve customer service. They think Anwar is their last bastion of hope.

During his five-day working visit to India, Anwar told the Indian newspaper, The Hindu, that Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail would vacate her position when he became PM.

He said, “Yes, she has said she wants to step down when I assume office, because she feels it will not be proper. She will continue to play her role, especially for health and culture and welfare.”

Did she really say that she will step down? Or was Anwar speaking for her?

The threat of nepotism means that many very good people will not want to work for the party. They know they will not progress far. Few people are prepared to criticise the boss’s wife, or daughter. Already, PKR is known as “Party Keluarga & Rakan-rakan”.

After eight months, the new Pakatan Harapan administration should have addressed serious issues concerning welfare and women and children’s rights. They seem to have avoided those issues, especially in matters pertaining to child marriages, treatment of single mothers who have been wronged by the system, lesbians who have been whipped and transgenders who have been murdered. Can a dutiful Malay wife go against her husband’s wishes?

In 2008, Anwar said he wanted to end affirmative action policies. A few days ago, he urged non-Malays to understand the concerns of the Malays. Can he make up his mind?

Anwar seems to have one face for speaking in Malaysia and another for speaking when he is abroad. So, who is the real Anwar Ibrahim, and can we trust him?


MARIAM MOKHTAR is a defender of the truth, the admiral-general of the Green Bean Army and president of the Perak Liberation Organisation (PLO). Blog, Twitter.

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

 

What’s behind Anwar’s visit to India?


January 15, 2019

What’s behind Anwar’s visit to India?

It is common knowledge that South and Southeast Asia have extensive historical links. For thousands of years, there have been economic, cultural and religious interconnections.

Diplomacy has been a key activity which spurred widespread trade, investment and people-to-people ties between India and Malaysia. Through this, a steady Indian diaspora established itself in Malaysia.

Image result for asian renaissance

Statistics from 2017 show that 8% (or 2.4 million) of Malaysia’s population comprise Indians. This makes it the Asian country with the third largest population of Indians or non-resident Indians. Only Nepal (four million) and Saudi Arabia (three million) are ahead. For these reasons alone, it is not surprising that Malaysia’s political elite take a keen interest in India.

Image result for Anwar Ibrahim in India

Anwar Ibrahim arrived in India for a five-day visit on January 10. He delivered a speech at the 4th multilateral Raisina Dialogue, organised by the Ministry of External Affairs and the Observer Research Foundation. The Raisina Dialogue is India’s flagship annual geopolitical and geostrategic conference. This year’s theme was “A World Reorder: New Geometrics; Fluid Partnerships; Uncertain Outcomes”.

The Indian Express quoted Anwar as saying he is “a very old India watcher and frequent visitor”. Maybe so, because Anwar knows Malaysia cannot afford to ignore India. Several domestic currents in both India and Malaysia have direct implications for regional politics and bilateral relations. And currently, whatever happens in or to India has direct repercussions for Malaysia. Communalism, religious extremism and democratic legitimation are three trends which both nations need to guard against.

Communalism and religious extremism

Image result for chameleon

Anwar’s speech in New Delhi was replete with attacks on nationalism, jingoism and xenophobia. Some of us may not yet be familiar with the term “jingoism”, but Anwar has been using it for decades. For instance, in 1995, at the International Conference on Jose Rizal, he spoke of Rizal, Rabindranath Tagore and the Asian Renaissance. His message then was that Asian countries must have the political will to battle corruption and the abuse of power. However, he used the concept of jingoism to warn against a total rejection of alien ideals in the process of cultural rebirth. Rather than chauvinistic nationalism (which is what jingoism is), Anwar was all for synthesising the ideals of justice and compassion that exist in all civilisations of the north, south, east and west. He recognised these as universal values.

In 1994, at the International Conference on China and Southeast Asia in the 21st Century in Beijing, Anwar again mentioned jingoism. He spoke of the travels of Vasco da Gama and Zheng He (Cheng Ho), and international trade. His main point was that Asian societies should not succumb to the globalisation of Western interests, but instead counter economic protectionism while promoting a global trading platform that serves Asia’s interests. But Anwar cautioned Asians not to be the chest-banging King Kong at the expense of recognising a global system with multiple centres.

It is clear that we should not reject everything Western. Western civilisation has a good track record of rediscovering and reinvigorating its classical roots during its encounter with Islam. Much of Western science, art, mathematics, literature, music, technology and astronomy got a re-boot during the Renaissance and Enlightenment periods.

Anwar’s latest jingoistic comments in Delhi seemed to focus on the threats to international peace and security. He referred to nationalism in Europe, communalism in India, and wars and conflict in the Middle East. We can all agree that Donald Trump’s “nativist” economics and Europe’s unhealthy nationalism is the very communal politics of the far right that is so familiar to India and Malaysia.

India and Malaysia have been preoccupied with identity politics for decades. Call it what you want, but communalism, racism and ethnocentrism are “three sides of the same coin”. In India’s case, it has lingered for over a century. For Malaysia, it has been 61 years and counting. Both nations have had to come to terms with this, more so in the 21st century. The nation state, whether we like it or not, is subject to global geopolitical trends. Trump’s wall idea and Europe’s anti-immigration laws are couched in economic truisms, but generally, they reek of racist and communal effluvium.

After four years in power, the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party (part of the National Democratic Alliance, NDA) has declined 7%. After six months in power, the popularity of Dr Mahathir Mohamad and PPBM (part of the Pakatan Harapan alliance) has declined 19%. The main reason for the drop in BJP’s popularity was the Modi government’s failure to fight communalism. A key politician in the ruling PH coalition attributed its popularity decline to another “communal” excuse – that the goodwill of the Malays was fast eroding due to unfulfilled pre-election promises. One only has to look at the discourse around the Felda settlers, education policies, the ICERD fiasco, resistance to the Unified Examination Certificate, the Seafield Temple debacle and the “cross-on-building” mishap.

So, was Anwar deft in resurrecting the issue of “jingoism” in Delhi last week? Probably. The extreme patriotism and chauvinism in current Malaysian politics is akin to excessive bias in judging one’s own race and religion as superior to others. Fully aware that these sentiments are very much alive in our own political climate, Anwar may have made that speech in a convoluted attempt at bridging closer bilateral relations. Or it could be a case of “misery loves company”!

Anwar’s other agenda in Delhi was to meet with Rahul Gandhi, President of the Indian National Congress party. Known as India’s “crown prince”, Rahul has been known to say that Hindu extremist groups could pose a greater threat to the US than Muslim militants. Comments like these have caused a storm in India. Also, in 2011, Zakir Naik’s Islamic Research Foundation, the IRF, donated Rs 50 lakh (approximately RM20 million) to the Rajiv Gandhi Charitable Trust. At that time, Manmohan Singh, a congressman, was Prime Minister. India was governed by the United Progressive Alliance coalition. The donation was made after Naik was barred from entering Theresa May’s UK in 2010 due to his “inflammatory speeches”. In a desperate bid to escape inquiry over terror-related and money laundering charges, the donation was the next logical step. The congress has since claimed it returned the IRF donation. Nevertheless, what’s done is done.

Why, then, did Anwar feel the need to meet with Rahul last week? Naik is a permanent resident of Malaysia, much to the chagrin of many Malaysians. In December last year, Naik and his wife were “touring” Perlis, where the televangelist spoke at mosques, Islamic centres and universities in the state. The tour was organised by Muslim activist Zamri Vinoth, who is a staunch supporter of state mufti Mohd Asri Zainul Abidin. Naik’s Facebook page has approximately 17 million likes, which gives us an idea of his massive popularity among Muslims in Malaysia. At this juncture, we can only speculate on the details of the Anwar-Rahul meeting. Until more information is revealed (if at all), my hunch is that Malaysia is trying to find a way out of the diplomatic mess surrounding Naik’s permanent resident status, Malaysia’s refusal to extradite him, and the need to maintain a working bilateral relationship with India.

Democratic legitimation

Modi and Mahathir pride themselves on leading governments that are committed to the rule of law. Modi has been viscerally attacked by former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh. The latter claimed that under Modi, corruption had peaked and the “credibility of institutions systematically denigrated”. Manmohan said, in no uncertain terms, that “democracy and the rule of law are under attack”. He accused the NDA of failing to home in on the rights of women and farmers, on youth unemployment and the rising prices of petrol, diesel and cooking gas.

Mahathir and the PH government are being attacked, too. An impatient public has become restless amid unfulfilled pre-election pledges. From the abolition of tolls to the eradication of money politics and cronyism, PH’s failures have been attributed to Mahathir’s policies which were set in motion decades ago. This is grossly unfair and analytically warped. Even if undemocratic policies were in place during Mahathir’s first term as Prime Minister, the scourge of corruption and cronyism continued and peaked with the last of the BN mavericks.

Malaysians should stop finger-pointing and finding petty excuses. Anwar gallantly decided to address the Raisina Dialogue. In Delhi, he reiterated that both he and Mahathir are committed to reforms and to “cleaning up the system”. They both know, though, that the system is still disease-laden. The latest political appointees at government-linked corporations such as PTPTN, MARA Corporation and the National Kenaf and Tobacco Board are three cases in point.

India and Malaysia seem to look up to each other as influential Asian powers that are democratically matured. But outside the pristine settings of bilateralism and diplomacy, both nations are nursing mutually inflicted wounds. The good old days of Jawaharlal Nehru and Tunku Abdul Rahman are over. It is vital to deal with jingoism at home as courageously and confidently as we do on the international stage.

The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of FMT.

A Divided PKR House cannot stand


January 13, 2019

A Divided PKR House cannot stand

by FMT Reporters

Image result for Anwar and rafizi

All the President’s men are against Azmin Ali

PETALING JAYA: PKR Vice-President Zuraida Kamaruddin today launched a veiled attack on party supremo Anwar Ibrahim in a lengthy article published by Utusan Malaysia, questioning party leaders and those whom she said undermined democracy by propping up the top line-up with their own men.

 

“In most established parties in Malaysia, the early stage of damage is now taking place among the grassroots. There are those in the party leadership who wantonly deny the voice of the grassroots.

“For instance, there are parties which appoint those who lost in the party elections by placing them in the same rank as those who won. This is a blatant betrayal of the grassroots’ wishes,” said the housing and local government minister, who was aligned with deputy president Mohamed Azmin Ali in the recent party elections.

Image result for Anwar and rafizi

Azmin and former Pandan MP Rafizi Ramli, who has branded himself an Anwar loyalist, were locked in a fierce contest for the deputy presidency. Azmin managed to retain the post by winning narrowly in several states.

On Anwar’s fitness for the highest office


January 5, 2019

Kim Quek’s Rejoinder  To Terence  Netto: On Anwar’s fitness for the highest office

http://www.malaysiakini.com

If the load of hogwash of unfounded accusations by Terence is true, Anwar would be the greatest hypocrite, pretender and crook we have known.

Would a man who forewent the prospect of premiership twenty years ago and suffered unspeakable persecutions to champion reforms ever since have chosen to pursue such a dastardly career?

How believable are these unsubstantiated vilifications anyway? Anwar conspiring with Najib to secure his premiership even before G-E 14 when he was still in prison, not knowing when, if at all, he would be granted a full royal pardon?

Anwar opposed Tommy Thomas’ appointment as AG when in fact he was the shining knight who averted a potential constitutional crisis by securing the Agong’s approval just hours before a crucial Conference of Ruler’s emergency meeting on the issue?

Anwar a Ketuanan Melayu diehard when he was the first Malay leader who called for the replacement of the failed NEP with a need-based affirmative action policy in 2006?

Anwar caused the split in PKR when the party fissure started with Azmin betraying PKR and Pakatan Rakyat to connive for the Selangor MB post?

Anwar colluded with corrupt business tycoons when the entire might of the Mahathir government then had failed to produce a shred of evidence of Anwar having corruptly received a single ringgit?

Having run down Anwar, Terence hasn’t been kind to Mahathir either. Who is he working for really?

On Anwar’s fitness for the highest office

COMMENT by Terence Netto@ www. malaysiakini.com

“Yond Cassius has a lean and hungry look;

He thinks too much: such men are dangerous”

William Shakespeare, Julius Caesar

This question was not seriously asked of previous holders of the post.

Image result for on character quote by greek philosopher heraclitus

The prevailing political culture did not allow space for serious public discussion on the fitness for the highest office of Abdul Razak Hussein, Hussein Onn, Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Najib Abdul Razak – the second, third, fourth, fifth and sixth PMs respectively of the country – prior to their actual occupation of the post.

The regnant political culture did not consider it good form to discuss the fitness for the highest office of the above-mentioned prime ministers when they were deputy Prime Ministers.

True, there were major queries on the fitness for prime ministerial office of Najib Abdul Razak while he was Deputy to Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

This was on account of Najib’s alleged involvement in a murder case of a Mongolian model and his alleged corruption stemming from the purchase of a French submarine when he was the  Defence Minister.

But the political culture, then, did not permit serious public debate on the major queries on Najib’s character and integrity There was discussion, in subterranean circles, but nothing of a serious public nature.

This was despite Najib’s boss, Abdullah Badaw, engaging in a kind of political glasnost: He opened up space for public debate and discussion of issues during the time (late October 2003 to early April 2009) he was the Prime Minister.

Eight months after the inauguration of a supposedly New Malaysia in May 2018, there is a wider berth for public discussion and debate in which questions about the fitness for prime ministerial office of the de facto Deputy Prime Minister, Anwar Ibrahim, can be aired.

Image result for dr.mahathir mohamad

But there is a reluctance to come to grips with the questions, perhaps because it is assumed that Anwar’s succession is a given unless, of course the current Prime Minister Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, bushwacks him.

Dr.Mahathir has often publicly declared he will hand over power to Anwar. He has promised to do so, the pledged handover having been a vital precondition for Pakatan Harapan’s collective decision to name Mahathir, instead of the then jailed Anwar, as their PM-designate should the coalition win GE-14. This is the kind of compact that is very difficult to renege on without being branded a fiend.

It’s not that Anwar himself has not furnished good reasons for  Dr. Mahathir to backtrack. It is believed Anwar was in negotiation with immediate past PM Najib on a deal for UMNO support for him being the choice of PM had GE-14 eventuated in a hung Parliament.

After he gained a Royal Pardon, Anwar was seen truckling up to the Royals who were opposed to Mahathir as Prime Minister. He urged Finance Minister Lim Guan Eng not to be overzealous in exposing UMNO’s nation-debilitating corruption.

Image result for tommy thomas attorney general

He read law at the University of Manchester and was called to the Malaysian Bar in 1976

He was opposed to Tommy Thomas’ appointment as Attorney General and then pretended he was instrumental in enabling the appointment to be a fait accompli.

Disconcertingly, he is for Malay primacy and Islamic supremacy. He comported with some of the more dubious fat cats of the Malaysian business world.He had no qualms about being opposed to the ratification of ICERD.

All these casts serious doubts on Anwar’s credentials as an egalitarian and on his reputation as a fighter against corruption, the founding plank of the party, PKR, that was birthed by the travails inflicted on him by Mahathir two decades ago.

To compound matters, he presides over a PKR that is split down the middle, a split his conduct had engendered and he continues to mismanage to virulence.

Anwar doesn’t seem to know that factions are endemic to democratic party politics, it being wise to co-opt rather than keep them in contention, as his latest appointments within his party portend, following its highly divisive internal polls.

All these disqualifying clauses do not make Anwar unfit for the highest office in the land any more than Mahathir’s failing reformist drive enfeebles his hold as Harapan head honcho.

But this much is clear: there is an undeniable fund of gratitude accruing to Mahathir for making Harapan’s GE-14 win possible. When we imagine what would have become of the country had GE-14 yielded a victory for Najib’s BN, we are certain of our gratitude to Mahathir.

At this point, we can be sure that this former authoritarian has not had a Damascene conversion to the reformist thrust of the Harapan manifesto for GE-14. Mahathir was only pretending.

But victory in GE-14 was attainable because Mahathir was Harapan’s PM-designate. How could we know this for sure?

We cannot know for sure. This is hypothetical, which like all such questions elude certainty. But this much we can know: if Anwar had not made all those mistakes he has made in the recent past, he would be a shoo-in as PM to succeed Mahathir.

Image result for on character quote by greek philosopher heraclitus

The Greek philosopher Heraclitus observed that man’s character is his fate. Character is the way in which a person confronts the things that happen to him; fate is the sum of the decisive things that happen to a person.

It is his character that has spawned the doubts that have arisen as to whether Anwar  will succeed to the premiership. If he misses out, it would not be fate but his characteristic behaviour that engendered it.

TERENCE NETTO has been a journalist for more than four decades. A sobering discovery has been that those who protest the loudest tend to replicate the faults they revile in others.

<

Bersatu’s inexorable move to becoming a sanitized, immunized and Bersih UMNO Terbaru 3.0


January 3, 2019

Bersatu’s inexorable move to becoming a sanitized, immunized and Bersih UMNO Terbaru 3.0

Opinion  | By P. Gunasegaram

Published:  |  Modified:

  QUESTION TIME | If anything, Bersatu’s recent annual general assembly starkly shows one thing – that it is merely an extension of the old UMNO (Baru,) and will use the model of Malay supremacy,ty and put back in place corruption via patronage politics.

The only way to check that unfortunate retrograde policy is for the other Pakatan Harapan partners, especially those who have three to four times the number of MPs Bersatu has, to exert their combined muscle to rightfully regain more influence in the coalition and restore the original reform agenda pre-GE14.

At the AGM, Bersatu vice-President Abdul Rashid Abdul Rahman, also a former Election Commission (EC) chairperson, termed pushbacks against delegates’ demands to be given government resources to help the party retain power as “stupid”.

Bad enough that you have the former EC chairperson advocating breaking laws but this same person was shockingly appointed in August last year to head a Putrajaya committee that will make recommendations on electoral law reform in two years time.

This same Abdul Rashid had been heavily criticised by both PKR and DAP, the dominant parties in Harapan, over his tenure from 2000 to 2008 as the EC chairperson. This continues a tendency for Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad to appoint tainted,controversial and/or discredited people to important positions.

This includes Daim Zainuddin to head the Council of Eminent Persons; former Inspector-General of Police Abdul Rahim Noor (who brutally assaulted Anwar Ibrahim and gave him a black eye while in Police detention) to negotiate security arrangements with Thailand and former discredited aAtorneys-General to important positions.

Abdul Rashid’s comments at the Bersatu assembly are particularly galling and provocative and advocate extra-judicial measures to keep and extend Bersatu’s hold on power. These are clearly against the law but Abdul Rashid (photo) received a misplaced standing ovation from Bersatu delegates.

“Looking at the situation now, we cannot defend our position as the governing party because the division chiefs are being left out. It is lucky that the Prime Minister gave me a job with a big salary so that I can support my division,” said Abdul Rashid, apparently referring to his appointment to the government’s election reform committee.

“But the others, we don’t need to be arrogant by saying we shouldn’t give them jobs, that we would be taking away the jobs of others, that we should not take this or that. That opinion, to me, irresponsible. In the election, we must win by hook or by crook,” he said.

He added that although he did not like the idea of using government resources, it had to be done.

“All division chiefs should be given activities so that they can have the opportunity to defend their divisions,” he said.

Abdul Rashid also urged the government to restore the parallel village chief system practised by the previous BN government. “And our people must occupy these positions,” he said.

Village chiefs are traditionally appointed by the state government but the previous BN government appointed parallel village chiefs in states not under its control. The Harapan administration has abolished this parallel system.

“All development projects should be channeled to these (parallel) committees and the division chiefs must benefit,” he said as the crowd cheered him on.

Blown to smithereens

It is unthinkable that this man, who clearly advocates moves against current elections laws, heads Putrajaya’s committee on electoral reform. If anything, he will probably advocate changes in the law to allow these offences to take place.

Harapan leaders should forthwith put their foot down and demand that Abdul Rashid be removed as the head of the electoral reform committee as he has clearly shown, by his words at a public gathering, that he is not a fit person to come up with electoral reforms which are up to international standards.

That he had so much support from Bersatu delegates for his views is worrying, with other leaders echoing his sentiments. While Bersatu head Mahathir has said that what Abdul Rashid says is his personal opinion, he should immediately review Abdul Rashid’s position as head of the electoral reform committee.

The original UMNO  was founded in 1946 to champion Malay rights in the lead up to independence. Its founder Onn bin Jaffar left UMNO after the party refused to open membership to non-Malays. Tunku Abdul Rahman took over the helm and became Malaysia’s first Prime Minister.

That UMNO was de-registered in 1987 after the courts declared it illegal. Then prime minister Mahathir formed UMNO Baru or UMNO 2.0 and organised members of UMNO, who supported him to join this UMNO Baru, excluding others who did not. There was a breakaway group called Semangat 46 formed, headed by Mahathir’s then opponent , Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah.

Mahathir altered the constitution of the original UMNO considerably by making it next to impossible to remove a sitting UMNO Baru President. This resulted in a progressive erosion of government accountability and transparency, eventually leading to 1MDB and its excesses. And UMNOMNO-BN’s first loss in the general election last year.

As droves of MPs start to desert UMNOo Baru, Bersatu may well become Umno 3.0 if it accepts these UMNOo MPs as members. That will irrevocably change the complexion of the coalition and alter the balance of power within Harapan.

Other coalition partners, in particular, PKR and DAP, should clearly resist this and state their irreversible opposition to such moves, simply because all UMNO and BN MPs are tainted because they knew full well of the corruption and theft within 1MDB when they decided to stand for elections.

If all of the UMNO MPs are accepted within the Bersatu fold and become Harapan members effectively and those within Bersatu who call for extrajudicial measures to remain in power are not checked, it is inevitable that Bersatu will become UMNO 3.0 and the strongest party within the Harapan coalition.

With that, the hopes of the majority of Malaysians for a fairer, more equitable country, where everybody is considered Malaysian and where corruption is a thing of the past and accountability and good governance will be practised, will be blown to smithereens.


P GUNASEGARAM says we have to guard our newfound freedom zealously instead of surrendering it back to UMNO goons and gangsters who want a return to the past. E-mail: t.p.guna@gmail.com

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.