By : STEVE YAMAN
IT LOOKS that BN’s election strategies are very confusing right now and we don’t know what Najib is trying to do. Why is the “transformation” program not synchronized with 'unification' within the ranks of UMNO BN? Najib is so in a hurry to put in new faces and young blood that everything are in shambles. He is flip-flopping and it is “neither here nor there”! So, what is the direction?
When Najib took over the government from Abdullah Badawi, he didn’t immediately hold an election to test his mandate. He took Badawi’s full term and more before calling for an election; and, for a moment, it looked like parliament was going to expire by itself.
To make matters worst, for the first time in BN and Malaysian history, three of BN’s main component parties’ presidents are not contesting - MCA Chua Soi Lek, Gerakan Koh Tsu Koon and SUPP Peter Chin Fah Kui… these leave many people thinking because these presidents prefer to stay just behind the scenes!
In haste, Najib suddenly drop, removed or retired so many wise veterans and generals from his front lines. The 40% list of retirements include Ng Yen Yen, Rafidah Aziz, Azmi Khalid, Radzi Sheikh Ahmad, Ong Ka Ting, Dr Fong Chan Onn, former PM Abdullah Badawi, Syed Hamid Albar, Mohd Shariff Omar, Azalina Othman, Tengku Azlan, Noraini Ahmad, et cetera.
There are numerous behind-the-scene sabotage and shoddy treatment coming out in the open. This election has increase risks of UMNO and members are willing to be more openly daring by fielding themselves. Candidates not fielded have taken to contest.
Now so many people felt left out and even the UMNO BN Wanita deputy chief, Kamilia Ibrahim, decided to quit all posts and contest as an independent in Kuala Kangsar. Sharizat, (the UMNO BN Wanita chief and the wife in the 'Lembu' family) not a contestant herself, had to go to Kuala Kangsar to tell everyone that support is still intact. Do you believe her when her Wanita deputy has resigned all posts in UMNO BN and challenged BN as an independent?
Ong Tee Keat chose not to defend his Pandan seat. Instead his former private secretary, Allan Tan, with Ong’s blessing, will be contesting on an independent ticket. Ong had earlier floated the idea of contesting on an independent candidate in his Twitter and Facebook.
This is the first time in BN history that a chosen UMNO candidate withdrew his or her candidacy on nomination day due to the “Mahathir factor”.
Pasir Mas UMNO Deputy Division Chief, Che Johan Che Pa gave way to Perkasa chief Ibrahim Ali in a straight fight with PAS Nik Mohd Abduh Nik Abdul Aziz. BN fielded Perkasa VP Zulkifli Nordin in Shah Alam. The situation showed Mahathir wielding his power in UMNO over Najib.
For the benefit of the people, and in front of the television cameras and news photographers, Najib and his BN team present a united front; but behind the scenes, another story emerges.
Damaging leaks about the shortcomings of his leadership continue to undermine Najib. His grip on the party is tenuous. His strongest ally, the self-styled First Lady Rosmah Mansor, will do her utmost to ensure he succeeds and Mahathir refuses to stay on the sideline for his own personal reasons.
The corruption and abuses of power issues may have by now reach its peak. And as with all countries in the ASEAN and the Arab springs, the time of reckoning has come. Our currency which was equivalent in value to the Singapore/Brunei dollar in the 70’s has recorded RM2.52 to S/B$1 today, when Najib took over our foreign debts has grown from RM286 billion in 2008 to RM502.4 billion in 2012, and Malaysian illegal capital flight (as reported by Global Financial Integrity – GFI) has recorded for the last 10 years from 2001 to 2010 RM871.4 billion and would have by now exceeded RM1 trillion.
How does the money flow right through the stringent controls by the Bank Negara which cites no inflow or outflow exceeding USD10,000? Is there any real transformation or degradation in the reality? There is even the talk of nipping dissent in the bud? What does that signify transformation or deterioration into the era of the 60’s where ISA had the upper hand in everything that smelled of dissent? Different laws but similar effect?
Is this a sign that Najib is now facing the “Ramalan Rahman” factor? The people of Malaysia are going to the polls. Will the people’s cries of “Ini kali lah – Ubah and Tukar” take its effects in the 13th General Elections?