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LETTER | The anti-hopping bill and frog theology

LETTER | Let me congratulate all MPs in the 14th Parliament, with the exception of the 11 MPs who were not in Parliament when the vote was taken. This new anti-hopping bill is a clear and unequivocal statement of what the rakyat thought of in terms of core values when we voted in our MPs at GE14.

Having said that, if I were an MP, instead of merely recording my absence without a voice, I would have given my vote in writing to the speaker, to say: “I vote for the bill.” Recording your vote is equally critical to declaring your core values on this matter.

Therefore, I still say, shame on MPs for whom this was not a priority vote. Being overseas or having an Omicron Covid-19 infection are the only good excuses, and only excuses per se, since their vote could have been recorded through other means. An MP’s voice cannot and should never be silenced!

Highlighting past frogs

Seremban MP Anthony Loke made an excellent point in Parliament in the debate over this bill, that it can be adopted into DAP’s party constitution if needed and supported by all its members. Such must be the true spirit of this bill.

I think we, the rakyat, must view this bill, soon to become an Act, as a matter of serious import and priority. My view is that all “parties”, including drinking clubs, must take this matter very seriously. Exactly as the DAP secretary-general, Loke, spoke of in Parliament.

All parties, clubs, and NGOs must drop all or any candidate of theirs who holds their current position by virtue of “hopping”. Yes, if we are serious about getting rid of this corrupt culture of “some members of the community are above the rule of law, by double standards” that is practised in our nation today. Am I wrong on this?

Whenever a “frog” jumps, he or she does so because of principles or some highly respectable personal reason, or simply because they were recruited through the “backdoor”. Again, am I wrong to think like this?

Is it not their “backdoor culture” which started or tipped this momentum triggered by the so-called “Sheraton Move”? We, therefore, had since had three different prime ministers from three different parties, but only one of whom was voted in by us. That is what voting means for the rakyat post-2018.

And yes, consequentially too, the ringgit has dropped in value also!

Nonetheless, we must note that all three of the prime ministers were ex-Umno members. Is it not time to move ahead and do things differently than the mere mainstream culture of the Umno model and mode?

Actually, there are two candidates who argue so and appear quite capable. The current mainstream culture of politics in Malaysia, to me, still smells of the decrepit accounting of the failed NEP model, fully abused to the hilt.

Frogs are frogs

Frogs only seek to jump onto the next visible lily pad for their own benefit. They seldom care for other people or other forms of life other than to ensure their own survival. Frogs also have a habit of croaking loudly to fully inform us of their presence.

Therefore, whether a “frog” is from an NGO, party, or by their lonesome, to my mind, any human who “frogs” is conducting themselves exactly like a frog, not a human being. I have nothing against frogs as animals, except that they are not humans. We are.

One can even argue rhetorically, for example, if Batu MP P Prabakaran is a frog or not. It would have been a worthwhile debate too. The fact was that he did not stand in GE14 as a PKR member, but was elected on a promise of change for the rakyat after the unjust prevention of the PKR candidate’s nomination by the authorised election officer.

Nevertheless, now, as a parliamentary candidate myself for P105 (Petaling Jaya) for GE15. I would like to argue that we must rid the country of all humans who conduct themselves like frogs. It must also include all those who adopt CSL as a mainstream culture of governance. What is CSL? Cheating, Stealing, and Lying.

The culture of cheating, stealing, and lying is endemic to all of us human beings. Self-preservation is a natural survival instinct after all. But there is no habitual factor or religious explanation for such conduct in every home. It is a choice.

All parents teach their children to not take what does not belong to them. All parents also teach their children not to cheat, steal, or lie. But CSL continues to be a major part of Malaysian life. Why so? I, therefore, argue that CSL is the direct result of policy failures by the previous governments of Malaysia.

By next year, we as a nation will be exactly 60 years old. Are we still not mature as a nation-state?

We needed the NEP in the 1970s. I was working in the government then and fully supported and worked to execute such a policy for 30 years. I spent much of the rest of my 33 years in the public service to serve the public interest.

But I also argue today that the NEP bred a culture of promoting and supporting incapable members of society to assume roles they have no capacity to hold or assume. Am I wrong?

As Amanah president Mohamad Sabu, the Kota Raja MP, argued in Parliament recently, all forms of bribery and corruption have a corrupting value that distorts our economy and any values related to fair play.

I reject bribery and corruption. Am I wrong? Is Mohamad, or Mat Sabu as he is popularly known, wrong? Is Loke wrong? Is Segambut MP Hannah Yeoh wrong?

Serious implications in GE15

I also reject the notion that Umno had won a popular victory in the Johor state election as being too simplistic. The citizens of Johor are not stupid, they probably figured that they did not need to waste their time and energy voting in an election that had no substantive agenda of change on the cards. Hence, the status quo remained.

As PKR’s new deputy president Rafizi Ramli argued, former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak is a crook who has been found guilty of financial misdeeds by the courts of Malaysia. His popularity in the state election is nothing more than a gimmick. Donald Trump, too, has such blind and ignorant supporters.

However, our battle in GE15 is against all forms of crooks and crookedness. Yes, it is also a gimmick when the chief of crooks, Najib, fires his lawyers and gets a freshly minted team to represent him in his final appeal before the Federal Court. It is all legal footsie to me.

I pray and hope that the judiciary today is not blind to such gimmicks. I believe that the days of corrupt judges are behind us. Am I wrong?

Some of us are in fact privately organising parties to celebrate in Wangsa Maju that important date with our judiciary when we can look forward to the chief crook being sent to the “resort” in Sungai Buloh. In orange, of course. Such is my prayer.

To my mind and heart, such crooks have no qualms jumping like a frog to collaborate in any CSL enterprise because they did not learn so in their homes. Am I wrong?

The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.

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