ADUN SPEAKS | True story. My daughter came home from school looking so tanned. I asked if she had played under the sun. She told me the fire alarm went off – supposedly a fire drill – and they had to gather in the school field under the hot sun.
I asked, "Why didn't you use the sunscreen lotion I bought for you inside your school bag?"
My daughter, clearly frustrated with my logic, exclaimed "It's a fire mommy! How can I find time to put my lotion?”
I couldn't get her sentence out of my mind. It sounded like that from some Malaysians express their disgust at the "far from perfect" opposition coalition's choice or strategy to win the coming elections.
"How can you propose a 93-year-old man to be Prime Minister again? Don't you have anyone apart from Lim Kit Siang leading the DAP? Rafizi Ramli shouldn't say this, Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail shouldn't say that. How different is Bersatu? Amanah should not demand for so many seats,” and the list goes on and on.
When your nation faces a threat as fierce as a fire, we do not have the luxury of time to orchestrate an ideal scenario for escape. Economy is tough. Our RM100 today is like our RM50 of yesterday. Our RM50 today is like RM10. And our RM10 is now like RM1.
Eating out is expensive. Cooking at home is not cheap either. Schools have become political tools for BN. Teachers are held to ransom for their votes. They are not free to educate what is right. The quality of education has dropped. Bullies. Drug addicts. Children are abused, sexually and physically. The entire vicious cycle goes on repeat.
How do you reset a nation without securing federal power?
Some young people claim they have time so let's spoil votes this round and punish the opposition for their failures. A lot is at stake this general election. For BN and for the rest of us Malaysians. No one will willingly surrender power without giving it a good fight. How far will Umno go to give it a good fight? Najib once said, "to win at all costs." Scary.
The political scene remains a non-level playing field. Look at the redelineation exercise by Elections Commission. Look at the excessive prison sentence given to Rafizi.
I am not asking for sympathy votes or for you to go out and vote blindly. I am all for political reforms. We have implemented a lot of legislative reforms in Selangor. Didn't take the votes for granted. Neither did we assume a perpetual rule. Raced against time to get things changed.
Perhaps when you vote this round, imagine a little the scenario for others and go beyond the four walls of your world. How will your vote change the lives of others who cannot afford what you have? Don't boycott the elections. Don't spoil your vote.
In 2008, it was a call for stronger opposition. Despite having a stronger opposition, BN can still cook up a scandal as big as 1MDB. 2018 must see the dismantling of federal power for BN. A stronger opposition is no longer enough to un-do a nation "on fire."
Pakatan Harapan has assembled the best team we can find given the present circumstances. Far from perfect, I know, and I too wish we can apply some "sunscreen lotion" on them to "guarantee" they will never betray us when the heat comes.
But if you sit around and wait too long for the perfect escape to come, the house will be in ruins. Come out strong to vote. Let's take more states and let's give Putrajaya one more try. Let's go!
HANNAH YEOH is the Selangor State Assembly speaker and Subang Jaya state assemblyperson.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.
Unrestrained power in your hands
For almost 20 years, Malaysiakini has stayed true to the cause of providing the Malaysian public with the truth. We believe that with unadulterated information, the people will obtain power to make informed decisions.
Decisions which lead to a healthy, robust nation - ours!
Keep the truth alive. Support your robust, independent media. You have the unrestrained power to do so.
Who says it's not our fault?
We aren’t trained to take responsibility.
Everytime we observe an injustice - and choose to keep mum - the prevalence of injustice becomes our fault.
Astute journalism paves the way for the public to be continuously furnished with the fastidious truth. You are continuously empowered to act and to uphold the integrity of the nation.
The Rakyat owns Malaysiakini
We choose to take a risk on independent media because we believe that only through independent reporting can one be NOT beholden to the interest of businesses or organisations. This allows us to really pursue the truth - aggressively.
Independent for 20 years.
The victorious people
In the light of holding the truth to power, Malaysiakini will continue to uphold its mission of providing credible news to its discerning public. Your support for Malaysiakini is always treasured as a testament of innate nationalism. Your victory is our history.
Quietly. Effectively. Says it all. Malaysiakini.
Speaking truth to power
When we embarked on this journey 20 years ago, we knew we would face intimidation, harassment, raids, arrests and perhaps even jail terms. We got into this venture with our eyes wide open.
The main reason we have survived this long - when many others have folded - is partly because we are prudent in our finances. But while we may be tightfisted in our budgeting, we do not hold back when it comes to speaking truth to power and holding power to account. And certainly, this new administration will not stop us from continuing to do so.