Malaysiakini News

First things first, Muhyiddin and Dr M...

Stephen Ng  |  Published:  |  Modified:

COMMENT A name change for the opposition coalition will not do much to help swing votes, but a series of ceramah in places especially the rural areas of Sabah and Sarawak, will make the difference.

Malaysians will vote for candidates who represent change, and change is what the Malaysian society has been groaning for. From the business tycoons whose businesses had been raided by taxmen to the ordinary men on the street whose livelihood is badly affected by the cut in subsidies and the Goods and Services Tax (GST), the wind of change continues to blow across the country.

Malaysia is now undergoing ‘birth pangs’. Until there is a change in government in Putrajaya, we will not be able to see much hope in the country. We have become a nation of ‘kleptocrats’ in the eyes of the world. Where can we hide our faces?

Ceramah and name change

People will vote based on their aspirations to see a change in government, not because the opposition has adopted nice names like Barisan Alternatif, Pakatan Rakyat and now Pakatan Harapan.

If former deputy prime minister MuhyiddinYasin’s suggestion is given any consideration, it will add yet a new name to the list. It will be Barisan Rakyat. Why Barisan Rakyat, why not Harapan Rakyat? Why not Maju Rakyat? Or, Kekuasaan Rakyat (People Power)?

There is no point talking belaboring the name change from Pakatan Harapan to Barisan Rakyat, just because Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) has decided to join the opposition coalition. Its participation is welcomed and it adds to the equation. However, what is more important now is to preach to the unconverted.

Nothing matters other than reaching the rural Malays and both Sabah and Sarawak voters who will deliver the final blow to the ruling coalition, once they are awakened.

With due respect, former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has also suggested a common logo to represent the new coalition.

Without belittling the idea, during the last general election, even without a common logo, Pakatan Rakyat received more than 50 percent of the votes.

It proves one point. People are more interested in saving this nation from going down the wrong path than to have wonderful names that could not take over Putrajaya.

Both Dr Mahathir and Muhyiddin have a lot of groundwork to do to win over the rural Malays in West Malaysia. I hope that they will focus on winning over the rural folk while our brothers and sisters in Sabah and Sarawak continue to work on the ground and deliver the parliamentary seats.

While I am also in favour of a common logo since the last general election, do we dare say that it will boost the majority vote by even 10 percent just because of a change of name and a new logo? To me, these are secondary.

If there is a logo that has already been registered, use it. If not, forget about it for now. Focus on speaking to the new voters, the rural Malays and East Malaysians.

Most of us living in urban cities are already feeling the heat from the rise in the cost of living under the current regime. Except for some turncoats, most of us have already decided who to vote for, even if we do not turn up for the ceramah.

What we need to do is to convince the new voters that Pakatan Harapan needs to be given a chance to run the country, just as we have seen that they are doing a good job in both Penang and Selangor...

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