Malaysiakini Letter

The gutter state of Malaysian politics

Karamjit Gill  |  Published:  |  Modified:

2015 will always be a year that will go down in the history books of Malaysia. The Barisan Nasional (BN) government is undergoing torment like never before since independence.

What started of as misappropriation of RM42 billion from 1MDB progressed to corruption of RM2.6 billion of 1MDB funds into the prime minister’s personal account, to finally a RM2.6 billion donation by an undisclosed source to Najib Abdul Razak’s personal account.

Along the way the deputy prime minister got sacked, four others removed from their respective ministry, public accounts committee (PAC) members upgraded to minister or deputy minister, Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) officers facing the boot and police rampantly arresting people.

As an anxious Malaysian, even I am starting to look for an alternative. While Pakatan seems like the better option, their recent actions only give me goosebumps.

DAP veteran Lim Kit Siang has on more than one occasion extended a friendly gesture to Dr Mahathir Mohamad. What is Kit Siang thinking? He intends to join forces with the deadliest man in this country. Mahathir is solely responsible for the ongoing demise of this nation. Malaysia is bleeding thanks to seeds sown by Mahathir during his reign of 22 years.

Stories of a secret pact between Mahathir and the opposition leaders currently send shivers down my spine. By no means I would want to go back to path of another Mahathir regime, although this time it is the son, Mukhriz Mahathir. Remember what the world said when George W Bush stood for the presidency of US? They said he is not his father, and would fare differently. In the end, he turned out to be worse than the senior Bush.

In the most unexpected turn of events, DAP together with Harapan Baru leaders shook hands with top officials from MACC in what is said to be a move of solidarity. This is the same MACC that was previously slammed by DAP. Lim Kit Siang has just shown support towards MACC.

What if after all investigations, MACC says Najib is innocent and does not need to be charged? Are the opposition representatives going to accept whatever final decision of MACC or will they turn their backs on MACC again if the eventual conclusion does not favour them? I think it would be the latter as Lim has once again demonstrated he is a man with no integrity.

The development with Najib is very similar to what happened during Musa Aman’s corruption scandal in Sabah few years ago. MACC cleared Musa from allegations of graft and money laundering as their final conclusion stated that the RM 40 million transferred to Musa’s personal account was meant for the use of Sabah Umno.

The impression I get from the keyhole is the opposition seems interested only in coming to power and Najib stands in their way. I am writing this article now almost 16 hours since Najib gave a press statement regarding the unfortunate outcome of MH370 and no opposition leader has given any press statement till now. Isn’t this a solemn enough situation to put politics aside for a short while at least?

When floods hit Kelantan last year, hardly any of the opposition leaders were physically present to help because they were busy holidaying the festive season overseas. When the Prevention of Terrorism Act (Pota) Bill was discussed, Lim Guan Eng was missing from Parliament for the debate because he was again overseas, alleged to be holidaying.

The whole of Malaysia knows how allegedly useless G Palanivel has been. However, on his sacking as a minister, DAP’s Prof P Ramasamy came to Palani’s defence and assured that Palani is down but not out.

Facing destruction due to rapid development

In Penang, Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng previously preserved Weld Quay Chinese Village as a heritage site and allowed the destruction of Indian-dominated Kg Buah Pala, despite Anwar Ibrahim’s promise to residents in Kg Buah Pala to safeguard their village before the general elections.

Early this year, The Straits Times (a Singapore-based Asian newspaper) voiced concerns towards Kg Tanjung Tokong, one of the oldest Malay villages in Penang. It reported that the village is under threat from destruction due to rapid development in its surrounding area.

Although the state government verbally said they would declare it a heritage site, no such move has been initiated yet. In fact, the state government is considering a proposal to redevelop the village with high-rise buildings. Villagers are protesting and a memorandum has been sent to the state government but there is still no reply.

More recently, 68 families who live in Mak Mandin Green House area in Butterworth have been instructed to vacate the land they have been occupying for 30 years because the Penang state government has sanctioned a development project of a 14-floor apartment building. Guan Eng previously promised the residents that they would be allocated new shelter before their homes are destroyed but nothing has been built yet.

The residents have been served a notice to vacate the land within seven days and they have no place to go. Why isn’t anybody speaking of fighting for rights of these poor residents? Have Malaysians also become so numb that the underprivileged society is not their problem and only misappropriation of cash is an issue?

The lust for power is getting obvious from both sides of political divide. Pakatan claims to care for the people but none of Guan Eng’s action speak the same language as his words. I am starting to ponder that even if the opposition comes to power, there will be no difference to what is already happening. I am worried it gets worse looking at the way prostitution dens and illegal gambling is mushrooming in Penang.

The country definitely needs a new hope. We need a new group of people who actually care for the country. I sometimes wonder if I should instead support the known devil rather than the unknown one. Wish Karpal Singh was here to stop the rot.

Share this story


Welcome back,

Your subscription expires on

Your subscription will expire soon, kindly renew before

Your subscription is expired
  Click here to renew

You are not subscribed to any subscription package
  Click here to subscribe now

Any questions?
  Email: [email protected]
  Call: +603-777-00000