For Gerakan to be completely annihilated in their own home state and political power base after nearly 40 years in power tell you the size of the ‘Political Tsunami’ and the aftershocks will certainly reverberate for some time to come. And how about Abdullah Ahamd Badawi?
For the PM to lose his own home state to the opposition must be pretty humiliating, eh? But why was Gerakan annihilated in the election at both state and parliamentary level? Perhaps, they were confident of returning to power; so confident they were that they were talking about who in Gerakan was going to be the new CM even before the people had voted. Maybe we need to substitute the word confident with arrogance.
As for the MCA, a review of the post election results indicated that their urban and city support had almost completely collapsed. The alarm bell is really ringing when national MCA leaders like Donald Lim, Tan Chai Ho and Chew Mei Fun lost in their constituencies, they who are considered to have been strong local MPs
MCA, like Gerakan, has been caught in a crossfire between Umno and DAP/PKR. The electorate has not been impressed by their ‘softly, softly, quietly, quietly’ approach in handling of sensitive issues with Umno. The people expect their leaders to be more vocal with their responses.
It was no surprises that Ong Tee Keat was one of the urban MPs re-elected as he was quite outspoken last year on the subject of possible corruption on school repairs. For his outburst, he was hammered by Umno and now, he certainly has the last laugh.
MCA needs to heed the warning shot fired by the people in the 12th General Election. Constant harping on the successes of the Chinese schools and more scholarships might sound good but it does not necessarily bring successes in an election.
The educated and younger element of the Chinese population want more than sound bites - they want reassurances on subjects like not being considered second class citizens, equal opportunities, security and the economy. The leadership needs to take heed and readjuste their thinking accordingly, or else, they might well be ‘Gerakaned’ or wiped out in the next general election.
The MCA is like a crumbling house now and definitely needs shoring up quickly. The party needs to regroup and rebuild quickly. Having lost our urban support, we have retreated to our rural base and are in danger of being a kampung party. The coming party election will be crucial as it could set the direction that the party is heading for in the near future.
Part of the problem facing the MCA is the fact that at the branch level, it is dominated and helmed by the old die-hard members who will not let go. It is time to encourage these old-timers to make way for new blood.
The party needs to openly encourage the younger educated and professional elements to join and actively participate at the branch and grassroots level. I would strongly urge the young people to come forward and stand for positions at the branch level in the coming party elections and take control of their branches and help to rejuvenate the party.
The rejuvenation of the MCA will start at the grassroots level, so please come forward and stand as candidates in the coming party election. The MCA needs you!