Hornbill Unleashed

April 14, 2013

GE13: The good, the bad and the ugly

Ali Cordoba

Malaysia is probably living one of its most exciting times, with delayed polls, never before seen handouts and an opposition strangulating the regime to its last breath.
Malaysia’s upcoming general election on May 5 seems to be scripted from the Hollywood western, ‘The Good, The Bad and the Ugly’ but there is a surprise on the timeline.

The battle to govern the nation is pitting Pakatan Rakyat leader, Anwar Ibrahim, who is living the greatest political revival in Malaysia’s history, against a regime that has probably overspent its days in power.

The irony of the parallel to the United States is that the ruling Barisan National is run by an old guard, shadowing a younger generation with similarities to the Republican Party.

The BN, with Umno at the helm, headed by Najib Tun Razak, is intricately mired in the gripping embrace of former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad.

The behind the scenes politics and the power deals that form part of the BN’s litany of errors  have in a sense contributed in catapulting the opposition to greater heights.

Mahathir, fighting for his legacy and for the new Malays he helped create, is putting Umno into jeopardy, forcing it to embark on a suicidal mission to defy the people and maintain the status-quo.

The bunch of old men, gunslingers of the past, have laid down the rules for Umno and BN in the wake of the GE13 and it is with their dusty intentions that the ruling coalition is going into the battle against Pakatan, re-branding the old tune into a new ring tone.

Again behind the scenes, is Daim Zainuddin and to a lesser extent Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, clamouring for BN to remain in power while the people seem to understand they are struggling to keep alive their own legacies.

The legacy of the Mahathir era is rigged with incidents and events that have marred the country for good, including the ‘Malaysia Boleh’ slogan, the Memali incident, the al-Maunah episode and the reformasi era.

Mahathir is not opposing Anwar to secure the memories left behind by the street battles of the reformasi crowd seeking change in the country, but he is batting for the total recall of such vivid memories.

And by recall, it clearly means the erasing of the history of the reformasi movement with the elder statesman calling for Anwar to be burried in GE13.

The sinking ship

Mahathir and men of his ilk are defending their legacies of ISA arrests, the beating of Anwar in jail and of his supporters in the streets, the fallacies of the Sodomy 1 and 2 saga and cronies eating up the wealth of the country are the uglier ones in Malaysia’s political arena.

Then came the Najib Tun Razak era, tainted with the Scorpene scandal and the Altantunya Shaariibuu affair, with a government that did everything to become the copycat of the policies formulated by the opposition.

Najib will be remembered for the lackluster BN in power, shackled by Anwar’s exuberance and his forceful character whom they could not eliminate despite the plethora of ugly sex videos.

The Economic Transformation Plan (ETP) did not capture the imagination of the people, similar to the buttering of the old notorious laws into new notorious ones.

If the Najib regime thought the people could live with BR1M on a monthly basis, then it is sorely wrong and it has underestimated the needs of a population that has seen it all with cronyism and nepotism. That is how bad the Najib regime is, in the end.

Malaysia is probably living one of its most exciting political days, with delayed polls, massive unseen before hand outs and an opposition that is strangulating the regime to its last breath.

And Anwar, the firebrand opposition leader who escaped rotting in jail for good only to add his electric and magnetic prowess to cement a fragmented opposition, is the undeniable focus of these elections.

To cap it all, among the list of opposition leaders who are trying to liberate the people from the fetters of the BN, there is Chua Jui Meng, Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and Chegu Bard – all apparent sacrificial angels in a long list of heroes and heroines.

And there are those who have no place within the BN at all, including the likes of Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah, Musa Hitam and Ong Ka Ting – one wonders what are they still hoping to gain from the sinking ship?

They could all be part of those who could represent the people in this day and age of change that is dawning over Malaysia, but it would all be futile if in the end, BN wins the elections.

On top of the list of the good, the Pakatan has to justify why leaders like Chua Jui Meng are not going to defend and represent change for the people of Malaysia?


  1. The true meaning of BR1M:

    Comment by SN — April 15, 2013 @ 6:49 PM | Reply

  2. We have already witnessed the ugly side of BN, getting those samsengs to disrupt Pakatan’s ceramah.
    Now we can know why BN is promoting kapcai racing (Petronas cub prix) all around the country, for the mat rempit to unleash their ugly side at the opposition.

    Comment by Akmal — April 14, 2013 @ 10:08 AM | Reply

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