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Is there a place for Malaysians?

In Malaysia on August 27, 2008 at 2:56 pm

Decided to start a blog today. Promised myself I would have to do it if Anwar wins the Permatang Pauh seat. I had hoped, against all presumption, it would not happen. The details of his win – here (Malaysia Sun) and here (AFP).

Most people don’t remember his earlier days when he rose to prominence through populist actions. He preyed on the most base and fearful aspects of Malaysian society, the politics of division and racial identity. He was an UMNO Youth leader with strong support from the Malay youth movement of Malaysia, largely a result of his irresponsible nationalistic and radical messages. For those who cannot speak, read or write English well, even if you are a graduate of a local university, you can thank him.

Today, he has done it again, winning a seat he had to vacate for 9 years because of a sodomy charge (of which he was eventually cleared). In the latest version, he is projecting a post-racial (or bipartisan) image when Anwar released a statement (Malaysian Sun):

Our calls for national unity, good governance and a vibrant democracy have silenced the voices of racist chanting, those who profit from the abuse of power and exploit the politics of fear and deceit” .

Do you believe him when he says these things: ‘national unity’, ‘good governance’ ‘vibrant democracy’? I don’t. Was he not irresponsible as Deputy Prime Minister of Malaysia? I cannot recall his demands for national unity whilst he was busy as a youth leader defacing English signage, nor promoting good governance when he was DPM to Mahatir – the man who shattered our judicial system.

So today, why should anyone believe a politician just because he says he will do something? Perhaps, a better question should be, why are Malaysians so willing to worship politicians. Anwar did not do much in his 17 years as MP (1982 to 1999) for Permatang Pauh. So why would he do anything positive now, nearly three decades after he first started in politics? Isn’t this simply a rude, and filthily corrupt way, to grab power and be Malaysia’s next Prime Minister?

For those who would like background info there is another blog covering Malaysia’s civil society that’s detailed, altho’ it’s been quite awhile since the last update. And here. If you have read this far, non-Malaysian, and therefore not familiar with the controversial Anwar Ibrahim, he is profiled here by BBC (UK).

I hope more Malaysians are willing to have a go at our elected politicians for failing us because we need to make a difference. After 50 years of independence, there should be more Malaysians with an interest in the well-being of our own country, but they are either afraid or unwilling to speak up.

What is your place in Malaysia? What would you say to Abdullah Badawi or Anwar Ibrahim if you had a seat at the table? I welcome comments.

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  1. […] posts on the irresponsible words and actions of Anwar Ibrahim are here, here and here (chronologically). More importantly, I have also questioned our current Prime […]

  2. […] All these started from a by-election in Permatang Pauh, Penang (see my first post). […]

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