Thursday, December 06, 2007
Politics of Intimidation
Funny, how can the Prime Minister convince us that he is fair to all when members of his party can say the darnest and seditious thing and get away with it? Yes, all they have to do is to BLAME the public, oppositions and bloggers. Members from other political parties are not entitled to the same exclusivity.
Any sign of dissent and they will be immediately hauled up by the deputy whip. Some of them have been suspended from their governmental position for speaking the voices of the people. Yet, many of these 'other' leaders still want to convince the electorates that they can make a difference internally. We may not know what they do inside but we are definitely not retarded and can be fooled by this plain statement.
Hence, I totally support Kota Bahru MP Zaid Ibrahim's call for Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to conduct a major overhaul of his cabinet line-up, including dropping certain senior ministers. He reasoned this will allow the government to rid itself of ‘old problems, habits and thinking’ to address the current challenges in the wake of tens of thousands taking to the street to vent their frustrations.
However, I would like to go a step further. The PM should democratise the parliament and the ruling coalition to ensure that MPs and politicians are not mere rubber stamp of the executive. MPs, as people representatives, should play their role to debate policy issues and ensure that they play a proactive role in solving various problems faced by the society.
The modus operandi of UMNO does not suggest that it is willing to share power. On the contrary, it is using other component parties to extend and legitimise its dominance. For fear of antagonising UMNO, many leaders in these political parties are not willing to take a stand contrary to UMNO e.g. NEP, Islamisation, privatisation and others. Grouses are often internalised and discussed in closed door meetings amongst the top honchos.
Some of these leaders even try to cover up for UMNO fearing that their own electoral prospect can be jeapordised if the truth is leaked out. The TRUTH cannot be kept hidden forever.
I have a piece of advice for those UMNO leaders who think that MIGHT IS RIGHT. They may one day find out that they have bitten more than what they can chew. The world is changing and those who refused to change will be left behind.
For these reasons, I applaud the position taken by MP Zaid although I am not too sure if he is going to succeed changing from the inside. Good luck!