Hornbill Unleashed

November 27, 2011

Azizah: Vote for us and we’ll deliver RM4,000 p/m minimum household income

Azizah: Vote for us and we'll deliver RM4,000 p/m minimum household income

Maria Begum

PKR president Wan Azizah Wan Ismail unveiled a slew of strategies to improve the livelihood of Malaysians, the majority of whom are struggling with sky-rocketing prices, promising voters a much brighter furture should they vote for her party in general elections widely expected to be held early next year.

Not only did the Wan Azizah announce that PKR had finalised a plan to raise the minimum household income to RM4,000 within 5 years, and introduce a minimum wage of RM1,100 per month, she also had good news for the Felda settlers, who number around 2 million and form the traditional voter base of arch rival Umno.

“Our main strategy to raise the minimum household income to RM4,000 in five years. Keadilan is the first party to target this. This shift in mindset is the weapon most feared by the ruling elite, as they know this will break their race-based economic strategy,” a cheerful Wan Azizah said in her policy speech at Pulai Springs, Johor on Saturday.

To be able to hit the RM4,000 per month mark, PKR will also unveil educational, economic and human resource reforms “so that each family will have more workers”, she added.

More than 2,000 delegates including Pakatan Rakyat top guns Hadi Awang, Lim Kit Siang thronged the PKR conference. The party had chosen Johor – the political bastion of Umno and the MCA – to send a strong message that it was ready and willing to take on the lion in its den.

This has sparked huge concern in the two BN parties, and few Johoreans were surprised to hear that the police had cancelled almost all the PKR’s ceramah permits. However, PKR deputy president Azmin Ali has assured that the meetings would continue although on a smaller scale.

Returning Felda to the settlers

But perhaps it is the Felda proposal that is bound to raise a ruckus in Umno, and pundits expect a fast and furious rebuttal to follow from Prime Minister Najib Razak, who personally overseas Felda.

The PKR aims to turn over Felda – the world’s largest plantation operator – to the settlers, who began tilling the land when the agency was first formed in 1956.

Through the decades, settlers have enjoyed various feast-and-famine cycles but the vast majority remain poor and form the bulk of the lowest earners in Malaysia. Recent news of Felda Gobal Ventures losing money in its overseas investments and having to borrow RM6billion from the EPF have sparked concern amongst the farmers.

There is also grave concern over Prime Minister Najib Razak’s plan to list Felda Global on the local bourse. Many fear that it might be a ploy to hive off Felda’s assets and raise further cash to cover up mismanagement and investment losses.

Better candidates in GE-13

As expected, Azizah also zoomed in the 13th general election, promising to field better candidates than in 2008, when it won the most seats in the Pakayat Rakyat only to lose several to defections to Umno and its allies.

However, despite non-stop fire from its political foes, PKR has survived and rebounded stronger from 2010, when the party was shaken to the core by Trojan horses planted Umno, who created massive trouble to discredit Azizah and her husband Opposition Leader Anwar brahim.

PKR was the first party in Malaysia and Southeast Asia to hold a one-member one-vote internal polls. Not surprisingly, this drew jealousy and a barrage of attempts to tarnish and derails its elections. Nonetheless, Azizah and her national leadership council managed to steer the party through the toughest times.

That PKR today is a very much different animal than a year is very evident in Azizah’s poised and smiling demeanor. Her party has done excellently, uncovering the latest RM250 million NFC financial debacle in which several key Umno leaders have been implicated.

“We will give our guarantee that we will consult the divisions and grassroots in choosing the candidates. They should be from those who are qualified, hold true to the principles of the struggle and will not be tempted by the millions of ringgit from the enemy,” said Azizah.

“It’s fortunate that they were exposed early and had opted to jump ship and betray the struggle. Now, they unashamedly become the tools of corruption.”

There is actually little shortage of good talent already on board PKR, which models itself as a multiracial party. So far, Anwar and Azizah’s insistence on sticking to the moral high ground have won their party respect, especially after it managed to rise from the ‘ashes’ of 2010 and its star is now shining again.


  1. rm4000…dont you think its a bit too much? Not a realistic figure……..

    Comment by HH2H — November 27, 2011 @ 7:26 PM | Reply

  2. Sime Darby had declared losses in the tune of almost RM2 billion and now MISC LIners had announced last week that it had lost over RM2 billion in the last 3 years alone. Next will be Felda which once boasted of more than RM8 billion cash The top management of all these conglomerates were handpicked by Pak Lah and Najib in the last 3 years who were former and present president of UMNO and Prime Minister respectively. We cannot discount the fact that KWSP will not have the money by 2020 if UMNO controlled BN continues to govern our nation.

    This will be Najib’s first and last term as PM and so will be the last term for Taib Mahmud. Do not forget Rosmah Mansor who installed herself as the first ever first lady of Malaysia when her husband was installed as the 6th Prime Minister of Malaysia. Together they have schemed to plunder our nation’s wealth further through Petrasaudi International which both families have shares, and 1MDB which camouflage the looting of money in Petronas and KWSP for all high impact development projects awarded to Najib and Taib’s groups of companies.

    Comment by Mata Kuching — November 27, 2011 @ 4:06 PM | Reply

  3. Malaysia has such abundant natural resources that Malays and all ethnic groups can have a far better quality of life than the poverty umno has condemned them to.

    Comment by Analist — November 27, 2011 @ 11:43 AM | Reply

  4. UMNO is fighting for survival and they have to make sure the worms will not come out from the can. It is suicidal to let the Rakyat to assemble. They cannot talk about corruption or abuse of power as it it like shooting on its own foot. They are now reduce to talking about sex and trying to use religion to divert Rakyat’s attention..

    Just like MCA. Now, their role has been reduced to telling Chinese and challenging DAP on the hudud. They forgot that they are government and should concentrate on building the country and not licking UMNO’s ball country.

    Think of giving a better future for your children. Kick out BN and confiscate their Dirty money to build Hospitals and Schools.

    Comment by Begul — November 27, 2011 @ 10:44 AM | Reply

  5. Felda is a classic case of umno-bn’s legacy of turning hardworking Malays into brain-dead zombies. If we take into account Felda as representative of the Malay’s share in the nation’s economic equity, it is quite a sizable share that the Malays are supposedly have in terms of the economic cake. Yet, look at average Felda settlers. They barely live above the poverty line, unlike their Felda towkays. They were brainwashed into thinking that they owe Felda money when in fact it was the other way around. But the sad thing is, they don’t see it that way.

    We’re hoping that if PR managed to turn things around and win the hearts of these people, the effort at alleviating their plight becomes a mainstay of the PR government and not end up becoming a monster themselves.

    Comment by Mat Yoyo — November 27, 2011 @ 10:31 AM | Reply

  6. Thanks you for the article. I am very interested in how the election is going to be managed,….how is it possible to have an election if Bn control police permits for ceramahs?

    Comment by I hate sugar-caoted people — November 27, 2011 @ 9:27 AM | Reply

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