we have come a long way

The big mammoth gathering at Merdeka Stadium on 12 January 2013 affirms certain things:

1. That people who supported various causes, such as AntiLynas, Bersih for clean election etc are peace loving people and can gather harmoniously and peacefully. This also reflected badly on the handling of some of the previous rallies, such as Bersih 3.0, in which excessive force were used to break up (some called it to punish) the rally, resulting in many people including journalists suffering various forms of injuries. After this peaceful rally, it would be hard for the authority in future to deny the holding of rallies  or to use force to crackdown . Malaysia has certainly come a long way since Merdeka.

2. That there is still massive support for the opposition despite the handling out of goodies. For everyone who is there, there will be many times more who prefer to stay back at home or who for one reason or another could not attend. This blogger, for example,  was unable to attend since I was down with Gastroenteritis with diarrhoea and fever , resulting me from taking leave from my clinic, and the fear of unable to control my bowels forced me to make the decision to stay away from this rally. Despite the handouts, which may have more effects in ‘buying’ support from rural folks, most urbanites would just take  the handouts and still vote the perceived better side, without being sway by the goodies.

3. That the coming election is still touch and go. even a top office bearer of an Government linked bank has indicated according to his calculation, the opposition has a slight chance of winning. Even some of the BN politicians privately concede that if 2008 was tough, this is even tougher. That may be one of the reasons why after so many wolf cries, election has still not be held.

I have personally stated many times that I think despite the good support for the opposition, it should not take things for granted and at this stage more than another other time, it should try to avoid publicly stating anything that may seem divisive to the coalition . It should also not try to be complacent and act as if the battle has been won. Well, even though many battles have been won, the war itself has not.

At this stage, the opposition should  concentrate on winning and do what they have down so well:  concentrate attacking the wrong doings of the incumbents, concentrate on issues that have won them support (like antiLynas, corruption, wastage or abuse of power) and expose any wrong doings.

Of course,  BN would also be going all out to expose any wrong doings of PR. This is actually good for the people. This is what a 2 party system should be: check and balance which will ultimately lead to better governance. At the same time, it should, even at this eleventh hour, try to cleanse itself of corrupt candidates and officials in order to try to win back some of the support. Merely giving handouts may not work as well as they expect. It is policy changes and real transformation to a cleaner and fairer government that will gain back support.

Malaysia has come a long way. We are starting to dismantle many of the barriers to true democracy. While we journey on, there are still many bumps and holes in our path, but we should all persist to overcome all the difficulties.

The light at the end of the tunnel is now brighter!

2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Simple Sense
    Jan 15, 2013 @ 23:21:15

    Still a ‘long’ way to go, not because of the distance, but because of complacency. It was shocking to experience how poorly the admin and business system work in Malaysia. Systems are often ‘off line’ and people are still happy, not concerned that the day life is totally sidetracked. Consumer Intermet speed is a joke in Malaysia, you can get 20x faster Internet speed in Hong Kong airport using its free public WIFI. All these are significant indicators of the poor societal fabric and people seems contented still, the only way to make sense of this is widespread complacency. A well fed orang utan in the cage is happier than the one free on the tree! Why change? The well fed one in the cage declared! Try open the cage door and it still choose to stay inside.
    Look around, do you see majority of Malaysians are well fed ones in the cage! This is why we observed in ours home visit to Malysia recently.
    Well, of course, until the one in the cage have no more food fed to it. Change will come. Or you can argue human have higher order of needs than just food. Is that really true!

    Like

  2. Dr Hsu
    Jan 16, 2013 @ 09:46:18

    simple sense,
    well said. That is why we must have meritocracy. But a two party system with better check and balance is a first step, the first tunnel to cross. I have also attributed in many of my earlier articles (2006 and 07) that the ills of this county, the loss of excellence, etc are the direct result of lack of competition as well as the affirmative action based on ethnicity.

    Like

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