YOURSAY | Can Harapan overcome the toxic politics of race and religion?


Modified 18 Sep 2020, 1:58 am

YOURSAY | ‘Umno-PAS had gone to town to falsely claim that Harapan was under the control of DAP…’

COMMENT | The three 'traitors'

MS: Fans of mendacious former premier Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who keep pushing the idea that Pakatan Harapan would not have succeeded in 2018 if not for the support of the old coot, will not accept the possibility that it was perhaps the other way around.

That seeing the unprecedented groundswell of discontent against the kleptocrats, it was Mahathir and Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin who hitched their fledgling Bersatu wagon to the combined opposition powerhouse of PKR, DAP, and Amanah for a free ride to Putrajaya.

This speaks to Mahathir's ability to mesmerise and manipulate the people around him, as well as the startling gullibility of his erstwhile partners who did not have the foresight to make him nothing more than a nominal leader.

But leaving that aside, I think it is pointless to keep harping on the traitorous trio, which is really no different from decrying the rain for being wet.

It is in the nature of those weaned on the toxic racism and mendacity of Umno to be self-serving first and last, to use and discard, to betray and to undermine. Expecting anyone emerging from that cauldron of deceit and skulduggery to be honourable is simply naive.

The convicted criminal, former prime minister Najib Abdul Razak, born and bred in the bosom of the party, is a true representative of everything Umno is. Scratch the surface of any Umno member and you'll find a budding Najib just waiting his turn.

So the problem of the aborted Harapan is really a problem of the rest of those who made up that coalition of convenience - their misguided deference to age (which the old coot fully exploited), their misplaced loyalty to a mythical common cause, their crippling fear of rocking the boat even when it was taking on issues like the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE), Seafield fracas, Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC) and the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination (Icerd), and controversial preacher Zakir Naik.

Above all, it was their inability to take frequent stock of events as they unfolded and to nip the real threat of betrayal in the bud.

It is not that they did not privately note the discontent of those who voted them in, it is not that they did not sense the conspiracy that was underway with Mahathir's deliberate succession obfuscation, his pitting of former PKR deputy leader Azmin Ali against his then party boss Anwar Ibrahim, and his refusal to publicly chide the Najib-led Malay critics of the DAP as he is doing now.

No. They bit their tongues and sat on their hands because they were revelling in their new ministerial positions and, to a lesser extent, were unsure as to what would happen were they to confront the chief manipulator with their concerns.

In short, they preferred to be pliable playthings in the hands of a patently dishonest and divisive "captain" whose track record of manipulating people and events over three decades is really not a secret by any measure.

So while whacking the stuffed effigies of the three does provide some degree of relief, it does nothing to address the real problem of Malaysian politics - the lack of men and women with honour and integrity, of those who will put country first and who will willingly sacrifice themselves in the process of rebuilding a broken country.

OrangePanther1466: The toxic racial atmosphere promoted by Umno and PAS does not help to introduce reforms.

Just look at the simple matter of ratifying the Rome Statute and Icerd. They were signed during BN’s rule but the act of merely ratifying them became a rallying point for the ultras in their demonstrations. Don’t tell me that Harapan did not explain the issues. The Umno-PAS troublemakers were just out to create trouble for Harapan.

The Umno-PAS tag team went to town to falsely claim that Mahathir and the Harapan government were under the control of DAP, which is nonsense, but their supporter base revelled in the accusations.

Their leaders were blatant to the extent of saying illogical things like, “It is better to be ruled by a corrupt Muslim than a non-Muslim”, “Non-Muslims should not be in policy-making positions in government”, and “It’s okay to steal, so long as you do not get caught.”

These statements were all meant to demean the non-Malays and destabilise the Harapan federal government. Yet, we now have writer P Gunasegaram blaming Mahathir for not following up with reforms.

The whole political landscape has to be reset if this country is to move forward. We need more people like former youth and sports minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman, lawyer Siti Kasim, and even PKR vice-president Tian Chua to reshape the terrain.

By the way, I think Gunasegaram is being disrespectful to Syed Saddiq by referring to him as “boy minister”. Syed Saddiq has done relatively well in his short period in politics.

VP Biden: The truth spoken again for the umpteenth time. Nevertheless, the future battle is the next general election. Will the founding Harapan parties PKR, DAP and Amanah would have learned their lessons by then?

Twenty years of camaraderie broken by a known chameleon. Harapan is in a good position not to be dictated by small parties, be they from Borneo, splinter fragmented party of a traitor and the "boy minister" (Syed Saddiq).

The Harapan manifesto itself is a good starting point to see if these "kingmakers" as they like to call themselves are worth to be part of a coalition and be trusted. Currently, it's a resounding no.

The "boy minister" forgets PKR and DAP are multiracial parties with prominent young politicians in their midst. Something does not jive when it comes to his copied multiracial youth platform. Be wary!

Quigonbond: I agree with everything except the bad decision to bring Bersatu into the Harapan coalition and make Mahathir PM.

Yes, that was the agreement. There is honour in Harapan, therefore they abide by what was agreed. The only mistake was to be conned by Mahathir and Bersatu.

I only wish Malays see Harapan as people who can actually deliver reforms, bring technocrats into government to better govern the country.

If they can see through the smog cast upon them by daily cries of "Malay first" or "Muslim first", then Malaysia will be able to move forward. Now, we're a joke to the world.

YOURSAY | Fault also lies with those in Harapan who gave Dr M free rein

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