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Saturday, October 10, 2009

Makkal Sakthi Party to control the raising of Indians


NO.6, Jalan Abdullah, Off Jalan Bangsar, 59000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Tel: 03-2282 5241 Fax: 03-2282 5245 Website:

Media Statement 10/10/09

UMNO’s Najib to use Makkal Sakthi Party to control the raising of Indians

UMNO and Najib think they can use Makkal Sakthi Party (MMSP) to hoodwink the Indians especially in 62 Parliamentary seats and 138 state seats where the Indians form between 10% to 46% ( Indian political empowerment strategy by P.Uthayakumar at page 16). But no more after the 25th November 2007, 100,000 people Rally refer ( The Star 10/10/09 page N25) Since then there has been an Indian awakening.

Najib must be kidding himself by thinking that a party calling itself the Makkal Sakthi Party will move the Two Million Indians back to UMNO/BN. Here is a political tips for you Najib and UMNO. Seriously and sincerely address and solve the critical Indian issues. Stop all the wayang kulit as if you are helping the Indians. Put the Indians into the National mainstream development of Malaysia. Then and only then will you get a bulk of the Indian votes. Not by stealing the Makkal Sakthi name from HINDRAF.

Thank you,


HRP Information Chief



HINDRAF is an apolitical coalition which attributes its birth to the conscience and awareness for Malaysians to recognize the truth, fairness and equality for the Malaysian whose forefathers had forsaken their ancestry lands to live peacefully in this multi racial community.

The Malay has political power; the Chinese has economic strength, whereas the Indian along with lain-lain category are voiceless and trampled over in their equation as a citizen of Malaysia until election time.

Who HINDRAF supports is not the issue but what is just and fair for the society at large. The voters in Bagan Pinang are the reflection of Malaysia and they bear a heavy responsibility to make a choice to ensure that their frustration as a citizen is made known against the mishandled state of affair of the country as well as individual states.

HINDRAF is not accustomed to the art of pleasing and passing pleasantry to appease the politicians but rather a truth messenger to create the awareness to the public, the sorrow state of affairs of those systematically discriminated and marginalized society within a multi racial society in Malaysia.

How the voters in Bagan Pinang make their choice should not be dictated by what BN or PR can offer but to be the bellwether for rest of the Malaysian community on their stand for the welfare of their multi cultural community against the interest of the politicians and political parties.

Yes, HINDRAF as a loosely organized NGO meaning you and me with equal responsibility in all of us individually to provide the conviction in our own leadership in staying true to its cause rather than being being twisted and spinned around for lack of political will against fairness towards the community ie public. Whether one accepts it or not relies on the cause of just and fairness irrespective of the politicians need. Humanity has always been driven with a conscience that created the tilt in GE12 and believes it is very much alive in the society.

Recent events such as the death of Kugan, Teoh Beng Hock, mismanagement in Kg Buah Pala, cow head incident is Seksyen 23, Kg Tanjung Tokong shows that the people need to be empowered not parroting politicians either BN/ PR against the truth and reality for the community.

HINDRAF reinstate it’s position that no political organizations in Malaysia today should be able to twist our arms to condone against what is righteous for the community. For 52 years we have lived a life to accept and dealt with the crap and sweetener thrown in by the UMNO led government as we ignored the reality for the masses of people whether it is Malay, Chinese, Indian or lain-lain.

Now the people of Bagan Pinang have a choice through their votes to make a difference based on their own choice whether to vote or abstain if nothing is going to change their status quo whether it is a BN or a Pakatan rule. The choice is with the people of Bagan Pinang to decide for themselves how and why their choices will make a difference for them to ensure truth, fairness and equality will transpire across the board and resonate whole over Malaysia rather than the rhetoric created equally in balance by BN or Pakatan.

HINDRAF can enhance its objective to ensure a fair and equal Malaysia for all Malaysians with the ability and cooperation of the general public, if one that seeks for the community is able to see and understand its stance. Those voters in Bagan Pinang will need to make their own assessment of their own sacrificies on what is in stake for a Malaysian community to show that “People Power” can prevail over politicians and political parties.

HINDRAF is neutral in its stand in Bagan Pinang as those constituents need to achieve their own maturity to make a stand for what is their dignity, moral right and belief in creating an amicably ambience for the Malaysian society in fairness and equality in the long run without deluding ourselves.

Malaysia is in our hand for humanity, we decide and the change will appear for our community.

Thank you.


Bagan Pinang By-Election: Anwar Ibrahim

Anwar : Najib stoop low to politicise hospital visit.

A no win for MCA, says Dr M

By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad believes nobody will benefit from the MCA EGM and the party will end up the loser.

mahathir talks on constitution 060509 01He explained today that it did not matter who won because of the deteriorating public perception of the second largest political party in the country.

Today’s EGM saw MCA delegates deciding if they would back Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat or Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek as their leader in a battle largely viewed as inconsequential by the broader Chinese community.

Dr Mahathir said the party would still remain divided regardless of which candidate won.

“It doesn’t matter who wins. The effect on MCA and the public is going to be bad. That is what I am worried about, this person can or the other person can win but the party will still be split,” he told reporters at Perkasa’s Aidil Fitri open house in Kampung Baru.

Ong had sacked Dr Chua by reasoning that the MCA No. 2 was tainted by his sex scandal from 2007. Dr Chua had surprised many by successfully winning the deputy presidency last year after resigning earlier from government and party positions because of the sex scandal.

But Ong, the Transport Minister, has also been tainted by scandal. He has been accused of taking a RM10 million donation without reporting it, and also for taking free rides on jets owned by the Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) contractor that was being investigated by his ministry.

A majority of Chinese voters are not buying either Ong or Dr Chua’s message and many have switched their allegiance to DAP and PKR.

“The people will also be confused. They will not support MCA so their win will be an empty win,” Dr Mahathir said.

Najib launches new Makkal Sakti party

Acknowledging that the Malaysian Indian community faces a host of problems, Prime Minister Najib Razak today vowed to work with anyone, be they political parties or non-governmental organisations, which back his 1Malaysia concept, to alleviate the shortfalls faced by the community.

NONE"There are some serious problems in respect of the Indian community and these are genuine problems which need to be addressed. We will work with all, political parties in and outside of the BN including non-governmental organisations.

"The problems have been with us for a long time and it would take a huge effort to make a difference in resolving these problems.

These problems include poverty, higher standard of education at Tamil schools, squatters and creation of business opportunities for Indians," the prime minister told reporters after launching the Malaysian Makkal Sakti Party (MMSP) here.

In alleviating these problems, Najib, who is also the BN chief, said all parties and not only the community must work and understand each other better.

He stressed that the 1Malaysia concept propounded by him was the best way to achieve this as it promoted harmony among all races living in this country.

NONEThe premier also said that while there were pockets of Indians who were anti-establishment, bent on creating problems and raising unnecessary issues, this was not reflective of all Malaysian Indians.

"The majority of the people want the harmony among races to be maintained. They want progress and this is what they will get as long as they believe in the government of the day and the 1Malaysia concept," he said.

Asked if these smaller political parties like MMSP would be allowed into the ruling coalition, he said that would be up to the BN supreme council.

"But whatever it is, these people support the BN except that they are not members of the coalition," he added.

MMSP not formed on my instigation

Najib also brushed aside speculation that he had instigated the formation of the MMSP despite having the MIC, touted as the largest Indian-based political party in the country, in the BN fold.

"Makkal Sakti was not formed on my instigation but eventually it would be good for these (Indian-based political parties) to consolidate. The formation of this party is probably the political evolution for Indians in the country," he added.

NONE"I do not want to say whether the MIC failed or succeeded (in assisting the community)... but it is the choice of the Indians (formation of MMSP). What is important is that they support the government," said Najib.

Asked if MMSP would be BN's trump card in winning back the support of the community, which deserted the BN at the 2008 general election, Najib said it was not up to him to say if the newly launched party would be BN's trump card in facing future general elections.

"But Makkal Sakti has brought a lot of support and we hope it can attract more support. On their inclusion into the BN we will discuss that later. It is up to the BN supreme council.

“Whether they are in or out (of the BN), we are willing to work together and that is the most important thing," he added.

- Bernama

MCA showdown: Blow to both Ong, Chua - Malaysiakini

In a dramatic vote at today's MCA extraordinary general meeting, party delegates dealt a blow to both feuding leaders - party chief Ong Tee Keat and his suspended deputy, Dr Chua Soi Lek.

azlanOng lost the vote of no-confidence against him while suspended Chua was reinstated as a party member but not as the deputy president.

The 2,304 party delegates effectively ended Ong's presidency by passing a motion of no confidence against his leadership with a tissue-thin majority of 14 votes. The margin was so close that a recount was ordered.

The delegates also voted to reinstate Chua as a full party member with a majority of 109 votes, but at the same time voted against bringing him back as party deputy president with a smaller majority.

The unprecedented results mean that the shadowy Third Force has prevailed in getting rid of both leaders.

azlanThe Third Force, which is not aligned to the two factions, has ostentiously paved the way for new leaders to take over the party.

"In the event that both are voted out, two members of the central committee would be appointed to replace them while their positions (in the CC) will be filled by ordinary party members," said MCA secretary-general Wong Foon Meng.

According to Wong, who is aligned to Ong, based on today's EGM results, Chua is now an ordinary member and no longer deputy president.

As for whether Ong should step down, Wong said that the CC would make a decision on the matter.

When pressed on whether Ong is still party president, he said: “It will be decided by the CC.”

It is unclear when the CC will meet.

Meanwhile, Ong supporters argued that there was no need for their leader to quit as a two-third majority is needed to remove the party president under the MCA constitution.

The results of the three resolutions are:

1) Motion of no confidence against Ong

For: 1,155
Against: 1,141
Spoilt votes: 8

Majority: 14

2) To annul the party's decision to expel/suspend Chua

For: 1,204
Against: 1,095
Spoilt votes:5

Majority: 109

3) To reinstate Chua as MCA deputy president

Against: 1,184
For: 1,110
Spoilt votes: 10

Majority: 74

Will Ong quit as MCA chief?

Ong and a number of the CC leaders entered vote-counting hall just before the results were announced.

NONEAfter the announcement, Ong move to the 9th floor of the MCA headquarters where he held a press conference.

Flanked by his key supporters including vice-president Liow Tiong Lai, Ong appeared a little disappointed but calm.

Asked whether he was shocked by the results, he said: "I'm still what I'm, did you see any expression of shock?"

"From Day One since we determined to resolve party crisis through the EGM, this is it, and we accept the decision."

As if hinting that the battle may not be over, Ong added the matter of the EGM vote still needs to be brought up for discussion in the central committee and presidential council.

Meanwhile, Chua is believed to be in a nearby hotel. His supporters are demanding new party elections to resolve the crisis.

chua soi lek leaving dynasty hotel 091009In a brief two-sentence press statement issued 90 minutes later, he thanked the party delegates for their support in reinstating him as MCA member.

"I accept the decisions made by all central delegates and I hope that the MCA central leadership will respect decisions made by the central delegates in the MCA EGM."

He is apparently suggesting that Ong should step down as party president after losing the motion of no confidence against him.

No need for two-third majority to 'boot me out'

Ong has previously vowed to resign should he fail to get the backing from the delegates.

"The first resolution, the vote of no confidence, we know that a simple majority once carried, I will be left with no choice but to bow out and step down," he told the Star in a Sept 19 interview.

"Anyone who argues that I do not need to do so, that only a two-third majority is required to boot me out, I think that is a great lie.,"

NONEOng also argued that the 22-member presidential council (PC), which include top ministers, should quit as well.

"If he (Chua) were to be reinstated by a simple majority, this tantamounts to casting a vote of no confidence against the entire PC.

"If this were to happen, then by democratic principle, the whole lot would have to go, the entire PC, as it was a collective decision and not a one-man decision."

Deja vu for MCA

This is not the first time that MCA is facing a leadership crisis.

In 2002, the party was also involved in a leadership tussle between its then president, Ling Liong Sik, and his deputy, Lim Ah Lek, over the purchase of Nanyang Press Holding Berhad.

The crisis caused both leaders to step down and they were replaced by Ong Ka Ting as president and Chan Kong Choy as the deputy.

Today's EGM decisions may open another front in the proxy war between the Ong and Chua camps as they may now start to line up their allies and supporters to fill the void.

Indian strategic analyst writes on 'lost leverage'

“Today, India stands more marginalized than ever in Sri Lanka. Its natural constituency—the Tamils—feels not only betrayed, but also looks at India as a colluder in the bloodbath. India already had alienated the Sinhalese majority in the 1980s,” writes Professor Brahma Chellaney of the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, in a forthright article appeared in Forbes, Friday. Welcoming his admissions and responding to him, Tamil circles said that who ever now addresses the national aspirations of Eezham Tamils, holds the key to the region of South India-Sri Lanka- Maldives, but India is yet to learn the lesson and may continue forfeiting leverage even with its own people, by blunting the national question.

What could resolve the crisis in the potential maritime region of South Asia is not allowing Colombo to play the role of ‘China in Tibet’ that would bring in eternal instability to the region, but allowing a ‘Singapore’ to emerge in the north and east of the island for an economically dynamic southern South Asia, Tamil circles said.

If India is not prepared to positively respond to the reality, someone else is going to do that. Even China may do it, making further inroads into India’s own people in the South, Tamil circles further said.

According to them, the elite in the two southern states of India, Tamil Nadu and Kerala, not only miserably failed, but behaved negative to their own future regional interests, by not making themselves internationally felt in diplomatic weight in equalling Sinhalese.

Both the states have a massive global diaspora to impress the world. They are no less to the island of Sri Lanka in geopolitical importance. But it is once again petty biases of the ‘elite’ of these two states that made them to play dubious role along with the Indian Establishment, ultimately undermining the global as well as strategic significance and the long term interests of Tamils and Malayalis in the competitive world of today, diaspora Tamil circles commented.

Brahma Chellaney
Brahma Chellaney, Professor of Strategic Studies at the Centre for Policy Research, New Delhi, former member of the Policy Advisory Group headed by the Foreign Minister of India and a former advisor to India's National Security Council.
Professor Chellaney in his article argues how personal bias in the Indian Establishment superseded professional handling of national interests of the country:

“Since then [1987], Sri Lanka has served as a reminder of how India's foreign policy is driven not by resolute, long-term goals, but by a meandering approach influenced by the personal caprice of those in power.”

“Another personality driven shift in India's Sri Lanka policy came after the 2004 change of government in New Delhi, when the desire to avenge Gandhi's assassination trumped strategic considerations, with the hands-off approach being abandoned [...] and Indian help [to Colombo] came liberally.”

“Even after the crushing of the Tamil Tigers, India went out of the way to castigate the U.N. high commissioner for human rights, Navi Pillay, in June for shining a spotlight on the deplorable human-rights situation in Sri Lanka, including the continuing internment of internally displaced Tamils.”

M K Narayanan
M.K. Narayanan, India's National Security Advisor since 2004, fears 'disgruntled' elements among Eezham Tamil diaspora and recently declared war against them.
Prof. Chellany admits that Rajiv Gandhi’s mind was poisoned by J R Jeyawardane, making him retract from the promised support to Eezham Tamil aspirations and thus bringing in the rift between Tamils and India. Rajiv was made to believe that an Eezham would pave way for a greater Tamil country.

“The story of the loss of India's preeminent role in Sri Lanka actually begins in 1987, when New Delhi made an abrupt U-turn in policy and demanded that the Tigers lay down their arms. Their refusal to bow to the diktat was viewed as treachery, and the Indian army was ordered to rout them.”

“[Rajiv] Gandhi did not consider a simple truth: If Bangladesh's 1971 creation did not provoke an Indian Bengali nationalist demand for a Greater Bangladesh, why would an Eelam lead to a Greater Eelam,” asks Prof. Chellany pointing out that the Eezham Tamils have their own identity, different from the Tamils of Tamil Nadu and the fear of Greater Eezham is unfounded:

“Actually, the Tamils in India and Sri Lanka have pursued divergent identities since the fall of the Pandyan kingdom in the 14th century,” he says, citing the example of Tamil Nadu not responding as expected to the plight of Eezham Tamils.

Foreign relations is not confined to governments alone in the globalised world. Many observers feel that Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi's failure in internationally casting diplomatic weight in the regional crisis, will go into history against him.
"In fact, nothing better illustrates the fallacy Jayewardene sold Gandhi than the absence of a Tamil backlash in India to the killings of thousands of countless Tamil civilians in Sri Lanka this year, and to the continued incarceration in tent camps of 280,000 Tamil refugees, including 80,000 children. In fact, even as the Sri Lankan war reached a gory culmination, India's Tamil Nadu state voted in national elections for the United Progressive Alliance (UPA) led by Gandhi's widow, Sonia Gandhi, although that governing coalition had shied away from raising its voice over the Sri Lankan slaughter."

The following are further excerpts from Prof. Chellaney’s article, revealing what India lost by a biased and imprudent foreign policy:

Beijing has been able to make strategic inroads into a critically located country in India's backyard.

India, too, contributed to the Sri Lankan bloodbath through its military aid, except that it has ended up, strangely, with its leverage undermined.

A “major turning point” in the war, as Sri Lankan navy chief Admiral Wasantha Karannagoda acknowledged, came when the rebels' supply ships were eliminated, one by one, with input from Indian naval intelligence, cutting off all supplies to the rebel-held areas. That in turn allowed the Sri Lankan ground forces to make rapid advances and unravel the de facto state the Tigers had established in the island nation's north and east.

In any event, Colombo was emboldened by the fact that the more it chipped away at India's traditional role, the more New Delhi seemed willing to pander to its needs.

India's waning leverage over Sri Lanka is manifest from the way it now has to jostle for influence there with arch-rivals China and Pakistan.

Prime Minister Manmohan Singh said recently that India has conveyed its "concerns in no uncertain terms to Sri Lanka on various occasions, stressing the need for them to focus on resettling and rehabilitating the displaced Tamil population at the earliest." But India seems unable to make a difference even with messages delivered in "no uncertain terms."

Indeed, India has ceded strategic space in its regional backyard in such a manner that Bhutan now remains its sole pocket of influence. In Sri Lanka, India has allowed itself to become a marginal player despite its geostrategic advantage and trade and investment clout.

Indeed, the manner in which Colombo played the China and Pakistan cards in recent years to outsmart India is likely to remain an enduring feature of Sri Lankan diplomacy, making Sri Lanka a potential springboard for anti-India maneuvers.


Its not that we have not interacted with the Indian Community. At every opportunity, over lunch or tea-breaks, when we chance on a group of Indians, Alan, Colin and I would approach them. And it is the same with most MIC people we meet: Their stock answers goes like these - Maybe Isa has changed; he has promised many things; he has given us money (RM100) sari and muruku flour, besides hampers; we do not know why UMNO chose him but Sothi says we vote for him; he is corrupt but what to do, MIC is in Barisan; (and here is a gem from one businessman) if we dont vote BN they may not cut the grass; Uthuyakumar told us to boycott the by-election. These are the stock answers we have been getting.

Some dare not vote otherwise. A widow, after receiving money and hamper were told, "We know where you are staying, so you better vote for BN." Very candidly straightforward. Widow is worried that they may take away her pension. To her it is real.

Why are we getting all these replies. Is Pakatan Rakyat doing enough to woo this precious 20% Indian voters

On our part, we have no choice but to remind our Indian brothers and sisters who seem to have been distracted by the sudden caring frenzy of Barisan Nasional - hampers, money, saris (cheap or otherwise) and tepung for depavali cookies. Let us revisit these:

and dont forget this

would he be proud of you

Who will Hindraf back in the Bagan Pinang by-election ?

By Vijay Kumar Murugavell

In my opinion HINDRAF can no longer mobilize the "thousands" it did on Nov 25th 2007, case in point the recent candle light vigil and the threat to mobilize large numbers nationwide.

Video : Friday, October 9, 2009
Waytha on the future of Hindraf

Please view above video and discuss.

Hindraf was born out of the M.Moorthy case and given impetus over insensitive temple demolitions.

Hindraf often says that Pakatan states did not improve the lot of the Indians. Hindraf says that though PR is not helming the Federal Govt, they should do whatever they can within the Framework of PR State Govts, but until today I have not seen Hindraf listing down what they are, have you? If that is done at least there is a platform for PR to either take action or at least explain why it cannot be done.

Waytha opines that "people" are asking him why the Pakatan is not doing "this and that." Would a true leader not engage with the party concerned for an explanation than just echo what his supporters are asking without discerning if those requests are reasonable, well grounded or acheivable ?

As opposed to being just a sounding board and issue press statements that are gleefully published by the MSM only for the reason they are critical of BN's political enemies. The MSM is deafeningly silent on Waytha's press statements critical of the BN.

The video also mentions Hindraf distancing itself from Thanenthiran and his Makkal Sakhti party who is backing BN and received the blessing of Dr.M and whose opening ceremony was graced by none other than PM Najib- but is silent on Uthaya and HRP (Human Rights Party).

MSP has pledged to campaign for BN in the coming Bagan Pinang by election, what is Hindraf's stand? There can only be 4 possible scenarios:-

1) Back BN
2) Back PR
3) Neither - Remain neutral
4) Hindraf is still undecided on their stand.

So what will it be? Hindraf can only remain a 3rd force if they can influence the numbers or at least back an independent candidate who has hope of keeping his/her deposit. Can they do that ? Not Likely. Otherwise they should make a choice now -Either back Pakatan or BN. After that work together with whoever they have pledged to back.

In my opinion Mar 08 tsunami could not have happened without Anwar but Anwar could have achieved it even without Hindraf's backing. Any one who understands basic arithmetic will know that a force that is backed by just a portion of a population that too who form only 7% of the electorate cannot go alone. Even the mighty UMNO cannot form the Federal Government without BN component party's.

Pakatan has pledged to take care of ALL. I have opined before that Hindraf should stay out of areas of universal governance. For those who have not read my piece "Bagan Pinang : Take of your race-tinted glasses- link here

My question to Hindraf is, did the PR state governments intentionally marginalize the Indians with impunity the way BN did or is it some grouses over poor governance with unintended consequences?

If so, it is grossly unfair of Hindraf to paint BN and PR with the same brush. If Hindraf does not stop doing that , many will see them as daring to only strike back at the PR govt as they dare not do this to BN who control the police and judiciary, in short using PR as a whipping boy to rally their cause.

Having said that I am confident that even if PR takes over the Federal Government without Hindraf's backing, they will still help all citizens including those who backed Hindraf, If PR does otherwise they will face the wrath of the electorate including non-Indians for not staying true to their manifesto, on the other hand if BN continues to helm the Federal Govt, expect more of the same.

Don't believe me ? Watch how BN will kick Thanenthiran and his makkal Sakhti party to the kerb after he and his party have outlived their usefulness. You have been warned.

There is a saying " when you have lost your way, go back to the beginning" so in my humble opinion Hindraf should go back to their pre Mar 08, 2008 spirit.

Tok Mat says he was just doing his job

By Dina Zaman - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — For someone who professes to have the "worker mentality", whose sole goal was to please his bosses and execute the work he had to do, who had no grandiose ambitions of becoming the next prime minister, it has been an uneasy journey. But work he did, and did he deliver!

He may have been despised by his own colleagues in Umno and the public, but even his detractors have no choice but to admit that Tan Sri Mohamed Rahmat was a successful strategist and propagandist.

Malaysians will also remember Tok Mat — Mohamed Rahmat’s moniker then — as the minister who cut off rocker Awie’s (of the band Wings) locks in public. Who can forget that?

Many, like this writer, had grown up singing patriotic songs — like "Setia" — he and his ministry (of Information) produced. "Negaraku" and "Setia" were sung during school assemblies. School choir members rehearsed all these songs at the RTM studios, prior to National Day. Who can forget Tok Mat?

“Did you hate me too?” he asked.

No, one was too young, and hate is such a strong word. He was just another minister to us students.

He nodded.

“I made him a star, but the star has forgotten me,” he said.

The star is former hard-hitting Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. Dr Mahathir, in spite of no longer being active in Umno and politics, is still very vocal, and a thorn in many a politician's side. Tok Mat served under him, and it was he who was responsible for Dr Mahathir’s landslide win in 1987, despite the ill-will and disloyalty towards the former PM.

It’s a touchy subject — Dr Mahathir’s and Tok Mat’s terse relationship — and this has the town talking. So why a book now? Is the book a hatchet job against Dr Mahathir by a former staff and minister? What was Tok Mat thinking?

“A lot of people thought I was his (Dr Mahathir’s) acolyte, but the truth was that I just wanted to serve my masters. And remember, I did not serve under him alone. I served under Hussein Onn too.” He knew the public hated him but he took it that it meant he had done his job; it was impactful.

“At that time, many people within Umno detested Mahathir… I was asked to find ways to keep Umno together, they had to be united in their choice of a leader. So I did what I had to do.”

The first time Mohamed was kicked out of the Cabinet, it hurt. The second time he was asked to leave, he was prepared. He already heard the death knell, and every day as he left for work, he prepared for the end of his days of service by telling his family that “…soon I’ll go… I’m going to go, I know it…”

“I regret not doing enough, because there was so much to do, but when the leadership does not want you, then it’s time to leave.”

The book "Umno: Akhir Sebuah Impian" is a teaser of more to come. Mohamed has more to say, and his next book would be a more detailed tome on what really went on in Umno, how he created and managed his campaigns. The second book would not be easy for some people to stomach, and as it is, his "literary debut" is pretty spicy.

"Impian" was written to test the waters, he explained, to throw in ideas so people can think and come to their own conclusions, and yes, to shed light on who he truly was. Besides, he plans on writing more books, but he is living on "borrowed time." His health is frail these days, he said.

Of the "new" Malaysia he witnesses now since he left the Cabinet, Mohamed is hopeful but only if “… Umno bucks up.” He’s not happy with the non-Malay dissatisfaction of their lot in Malaysia. In an era when racial politics is not politically correct, how can he actually admit to that? “Pak Lah opened the door to all this nonsense — now everyone is spilling out their pent-up resentment. Umno has been very kind to them. Their ancestors were foreigners, who came to live on our soil. We gave them citizenship, we allowed them to work, and they are demanding for more rights? What will happen to us Malays and our rights? It’s good to open the doors but not too much.”

When asked what he thought of a Merdeka Center National Youth Survey which was conducted in 2008, of which it was discovered that many young Malays saw themselves as Muslims first, more so than Malay or Malaysian, he remarked: “That’s the PAS influence for you.”

While Umno and Barisan Nasional have a lot to do (“They have to change and the change must be big. It cannot practise protectionism among its leaders"), he does not think the opposition will fare any better. “Do you know that it is hard to rule a country? Yes, they won four states but that’s a matter of elections, winning votes. Running a country is something else.”

The book is his way of purging all the secrets he kept all these years. It is time, he supposes, to tell the story as it truly was.

“I’m only expressing my views. And let me be clear on this: I don’t hate Tun. We don’t keep in touch… but he’s a great guy. A good leader.”

"Umno: Akhir Sebuah Impian" is published by The Malaysian Insider and will be on sale in bookshops next week.

MCA votes today on power struggle amid uncertain future

MCA central delegates start registering for the EGM this morning.

By Lee Wei Lian - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 — The extraordinary general assembly of the second largest component in the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition will decide today the outcome of a protracted power struggle between MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat and his estranged former deputy Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek.

The victor gets to keep a badly-bruised party with extensive mass media influence but not much popular support among the people.

A recent general poll showed that Ong was the preferred leader but public opinion may not reflect MCA delegates’ sentiment. But many Chinese have not shown an interest in the party fight, reflecting MCA's diminishing influence in the country.

Many observers, however, have said that Ong is expected to win this contest but whoever prevails in the end will have to nurse a party split by the infighting. The results of the voting on the five resolutions is expected to be known after 2pm.

Other possible outcomes are that both men exit the scene or both are returned to their respective elected positions but these outcomes are more remote possibilities and would reflect delegate frustration with the internal infighting.

A total of 2,377 central delegates will vote on five resolutions which centre on restoring the deputy presidency and membership to Dr Chua, whose sacking was later reduced to four years’ suspension for ostensibly bringing disrepute to the party with his sex DVD case nearly two years ago.

Dr Chua had resigned as Health Minister and from all party posts after the DVD came to light. He alleged his political enemies were behind the filming.

He made a comeback in last year's party elections but relations with Ong have been strained.

Now, whoever becomes president or interim president will have to grapple with the prospect of leading a weak and divided party.

Added to this is the fact that most Chinese Malaysians outside MCA have largely rejected the idea of race based political parties as outmoded and there is a widespread perception that MCA is a sell-out that is partially responsible for their perceived second-class citizenship.

The power struggle has also delivered another blow to the already tattered image of the party and so deep is the contempt for MCA that many have even expressed hope that it would hasten the party's demise so as to rip apart the perceived facade of a multi-cultural Barisan Nasional (BN) government.

Monash University Malaysia political analyst James Chin said the current BN set-up has sidelined MCA from giving real input into national policy but forcing it to focus on solving day-to-day problems like hawker licences, rubbish collection and dirty drains.

A term has even been coined to disparage some leaders from such parties — "longkang minister".

"The dilemma is simple; since they have no power they cannot bring about reforms and change in government. All they can do is talk about reforms and change," Chin said.

"Real reforms and change can only take place if Umno takes the lead, and on Umno’s terms. They have to work within the parameters established by Umno. Umno knows this and all the BN component parties know this. That’s the bottom line," he added.

And this is the real struggle that MCA will have to grapple with, no matter who prevails today.

Anwar makes last-ditch effort for Bagan Pinang win

By Syed Jaymal Zahiid - The Malaysian Insider

PORT DICKSON, Oct 10 — Making his first appearance in Bagan Pinang last night, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim gave everything he could to try and revive Pakatan Rakyat's (PR) flagging campaign to win the by-election here.

He called his former party racists, hypocrites and used virtually all derogatory reference there is in a last-ditch effort to stop what is looking to be a likely victory for Umno and Barisan Nasional (BN), the first in all eight by-elections held in the peninsula since the general election in 2008.

The probability of BN snapping its losing streak in by-elections since the March 8 polls, however, did not deter some 1,500 hardcore "Anwaristas" from turning up at his ceramah, the biggest turnout for the coalition's rally since the campaign started last Saturday for the Oct 11 vote.

It caused massive traffic congestion to the usually quiet semi-rural residential area where the ceramah was held at. People from all races, men, women and children, began showing up as early as 8pm despite knowing that the PKR de facto leader was only scheduled to arrive 1½ hours later.

As time went, the density of the crowd was almost to the point of absurdity. The queue was five minutes just to walk five steps forward, and the cars with plate numbers from all over the country parked by the side of the narrow street made it more difficult for PR workers-cum-traffic marshals to help reduce the congestion.

Anwar speaking at last night’s ceramah. — Picture by Choo Choy May

But it all seemed worth it for them as upon Anwar's arrival on the stump, the charismatic leader, through a mixture of humour and fierceness, brought palpable energy to the crowd. In just seconds, the slightly dull ambience transformed into a BN-hating frenzy.

"Who is the traitor to the Malays? Long have the have-nots suffered at the hands of the few rich elite in the form of Umno politicians," said Anwar, followed by thunderous applause from the angered crowd.

"The poor Malays are robbed in broad daylight, government contracts are awarded to crony companies, we see poor Malays, Chinese, Indian everywhere throughout all BN governed states, and they call me a traitor?" added Anwar.

His ceramah lasted for about half an hour. It was followed by other PR heavyweights like Kelantan Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Nik Aziz Nik Mat and PKR vice-president Azmin Ali.

Anwar will continue his campaign for PR today starting with a programme with the Indian community here in the evening.

The sacked deputy prime minister has been the subject of Umno racial attacks ever since the Bagan Pinang campaign started. On nomination day itself, books accusing him of selling out the Malays were distributed freely. In BN ceramahs, the same song has been rewound and played again and again.

PR, on the other hand, has been preying on its rival's tainted past. Former Umno vice-president and Negri Sembilan Mentri Besar Tan Sri Isa Samad, who is facing PAS state commissioner Zulkelfy Ahmad, was suspended by the party after he was found guilty of money politics.

But the opposition's focus on Isa's past has not given PR the desired effect. And even if it did, PR will still have difficulty bagging the majority of the 4,000 postal votes which have been traditionally considered BN's “vote bank" and it is uncertain if the Anwar factor can do much to change things.

Bagan Pinang, which falls under the Teluk Kemang parliamentary constituency represented by PKR's Datuk Kamarul Salleh Abbas, is also known to be a traditional Umno stronghold.

In March last year, BN's Azman Mohammad Nor defeated Ramli Ismail of PAS by 2,333 votes. His death last Sept 4 paved the way for the country's ninth by-election in less than two years after the general election.

Najib does not disappoint

By Tunku Aziz

Datuk Seri Najib Razak does not disappoint. He is true to his values whatever they might be. He upholds his principles with messianic zeal. His principles are of indeterminate provenance, but Najib is not known to worry himself to distraction over such small matters. He has made many of us happy. It has nothing to do with his 1 Malaysia vision that he seems incapable of articulating to save his life, let alone convincing Malaysians who have decided that half a century of untruths and specious, convoluted political and social arguments should be more than enough for even the most sanguine of them.

Najib has made us happy not because in a fit of mental aberration or misplaced exuberance he has added to his fantasy world the even a more preposterous 1 World vision that flashed across his mind. I bet it was a very brief moment in time. Najib has made us deliriously happy because he has just done something blatantly cynical to confirm what we have known all along about his attitude to corruption. Najib does not disappoint.

His choice of Tan Sri Mohd Isa Samad as the BN candidate for the Bagan Pinang by-election has left absolutely no doubt in our minds about Najib’s real attitude to corruption. He, ever the pragmatic, suave man about town leader of a country already systematically mired in corruption, sees it as nothing more that a necessary evil. If you cannot fight it, join it.

His matter of fact response that “Even those convicted by the courts get another chance” must surely single him out, like a sore thumb even among the corrupt leaders of 1 Malaysia, as someone totally devoid of ethical values. It also points to a complete lack of the political will to curb corrupt practices in our country. The gap between his rhetoric and constructive action against corruption is growing ever wider under Najib. Just in case he forgets, the Kuala Lumpur-based diplomatic corps and the wider international community are watching this development with some concern. Najib does not disappoint.

Bagan Pinang is a little backwater of a community on the Negri Sembilan coast. However, the choice of a candidate that even Umno, the party that sits well with corruption and takes it in its stride, was constrained to discipline marks a low point indeed. The much detested and reviled corruption-tainted and Isa has now been declared perfectly “kosher” to represent the country’s ruling coalition. Politics is indeed the art of the possible.

Can we trust a government that is prepared to trade integrity? And for a rural state assembly seat which, the winning or losing of which, is not going to have a material effect on the political fate of BN in overall terms? I, unlike Najib, do not subscribe to the second chance dispensation because political corruption will ravage national values and systems. Are we blind to the fact that it was Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s special brand of corrupt political stewardship, now still in place unfortunately, that has stifled our potential for dynamic growth, and kept us, in spite of the resources at our disposal, at the wrong end of the global competitiveness league table?

Political corruption if not dealt with decisively will destroy our nation because the national decision-making processes will be distorted and manipulated. “State capture” by corrupt elements will be the end result. We cannot allow the country’s future to be hijacked by unprincipled politicians, by default. Fighting corruption is our individual and collective responsibility as citizens. It cannot be left to the tender mercies of the corrupt in the corridors of power.

Now that Najib has dropped all pretence of queasiness about bedding down with corruption, he could do us all a big favour and save taxpayers a lot of money by closing down the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission, the National Institute of Integrity and all the other related agencies because he has made his position on corruption so clear. They are of no use to man or beast.

And while we are about it, Najib may want to propose a general amnesty for all who have been convicted of corruption as well as those who have committed corrupt acts, but lucky enough not to be caught. This is totally consistent with his belief that the corrupt deserve a second chance, an official passport to Najib’s 1 Malaysia where anything goes and the devil looks after his own. Najib does not disappoint.

Malaysians are now being treated to a display of arrogance unprecedented in the history of BN administration, and the choice of Isa, in all the circumstances, flies in the face of what little is left that is decent and honourable in our national life, worth preserving. Even by Umno’s and, by extension, Najib’s own standards, this is a very low point, and that is putting it charitably. Najib does not disappoint.

Little Bagan Pinang will without a doubt deliver the seat that Najib so devoutly yearns to have. He needs it to prop his shaky leadership. Bagan Pinang will in the end be remembered in history as the place where Umno lost its moral bearing, credibility and legitimacy to lead the Malays. Umno’s ugly nakedness in surrendering ethical values and principles to political expediency is here for all to see: it will be its undoing. Najib does not disappoint. He never does!

Government Supports Chinese Schools - Muhyiddin

PORT DICKSON, Oct 9 (Bernama) -- The government supports Chinese education by providing a big yearly allocation to Chinese schools, said Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.

"Do not accuse the government of not supporting Chinese schools as we are spending RM1.6 billion yearly to pay the teachers. This is a testimony of the government's commitment towards Chinese schools.

"Some people alleged that this man (Muhyiddin) is anti-Chinese, pro-Malay. This is not true. I had been working closely with Chinese.

"We treat all equally and this will make everybody feel comfortable," he said at the Lantern Festival dinner at Sekolah Menengah Chung Hua here tonight.

Present were Housing and Local Government Minister Datuk Seri Kong Choo Ha, Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ng Yen Yen, Negeri Sembilan Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan and Negeri Sembilan MCA chairman Senator Datuk Dr Yeow Chai Thiam.

High Expectations As MCA EGM Begins

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 10 (Bernama) -- A total of 2,307 central delegates began casting their ballots at the MCA's extraordinary general meeting (EGM) at its headquarters here on Saturday in the hope to put to an end to the deepening tussle between the party's president and his suspended deputy.

The voting began at 10.35am at the San Choon Hall after the delegates were briefed on the rules by Speaker Datuk Yip Phooi Hong.

The turnout when registration closed at 10.30am was 96.93 per cent. A total of 2,380 central delegates are eligible to vote in this EGM.

The delegates will vote on three resolutions, all tabled by suspended deputy president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek's supporters and boldly accepted by president Datuk Seri Ong Tee Keat.

The resolutions are to move a vote of no confidence against Ong, to annul the presidential council's decision on Aug 26 in accepting the recommendation of the disciplinary board and the subsequent decision of the central committee to expel or suspend Dr Chua and to restore Dr Chua as the rightful deputy president of the MCA.

Originally, there were five resolutions, the other two being that the appointment made by the central committee, including that of the deputy president of MCA, be revoked and that there shall be no disciplinary action taken against any or all of the requisitionists by the disciplinary board, the central committee or the presidential council.

However, Yip announced this morning that the last two resolutions were removed as they were non-issues.

The 60-year-old Chinese-based political party has been plunged into a bitter tussle since both men were elected to the posts in the party elections on Oct 18 last year.

The situation worsened after the presidential council sacked Dr Chua in late August following the exposure of his sex scandal in 2007.

The party's powerful central committee later reduced the expulsion to a four-year suspension.

Meanwhile, Wisma MCA was abuzz with activity as the top party leaders arrived early and took the opportunity to mingle with the delegates who were having their breakfast.

Dr Chua, who was not entitled to vote, arrived as early at 8am to meet the delegates and left as the EGM begun.

"If three of the agendas are passed, I can go 'home'," Dr Chua said, adding that "home" referred to the MCA.

Ong, who looked upbeat, told reporters that he was confident of the wisdom of the central delegates in making the best decision for the party.

The EGM also attracted wide media coverage as more than 200 journalists, including those frome the foreign media, started to arrive at Wisma MCA as early as 6am.

Meanwhile, security at the venue was heightened with some 30 police personnel put on guard to prevent any untoward incident.

A police squad with two dogs was also seen checking the vicinity of the MCA headquarters at 7am.

Among the 73 absentees at the EGM was former president Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting.

Voting will take an hour and the results are expected to be known at 2pm.

Anwar: probe me, Khairy and Abdullah.

Low wages still the issue

Nine groups fragment Indian leadership

Dakwaan Kelantan mundur: Nik Aziz jawab Muhyidin

What Position Should the Indian Voters of Bagan Pinang Take?

HINDRAF Makkal Sakthi
What Position Should the Indian Voters of Bagan Pinang Take?
Protest Vote Campaign:
Let us Demonstrate PEOPLE POWER. Don’t vote BN or PAS/PR in
Bagan Pinang by election – Unless voting one or the other
means a difference to us! So far no difference.
Indians have not got what they wanted with their votes after the last GE. This is the Post 12th GE theme.

The marginalization continues apace in the 4 states of PR. Umno continues with its racial antics. The many faceted grievances of the Indians in the country see no light of day. In Penang we have got this lying DAP Chief Minister and a bunch of Indian Mandores in DAP and a string of broken promises by DAP. DAP washed its hands off a key Indian issue at Kampung Buah Pala. In PKR we have a bunch of wimps for MPs and Aduns. They are nowhere to be seen on Indian issues. In
Perak and Selangor there has been significant land allocations to the Chinese by the Pakatan Rakyat Government but none whatsoever for the Indians. Temple demolitions go on in all the PR States. UMNO’s Hishamuddin the Home Minister says it is alright to slight the Indians in the country by desecrating their religious symbol. The Federal Government has done nothing on the Indian issues using the PR Government in the 4 States as their cover to continue to marginalize the Indians with their unchanging racist policies.

Why does all of this continue? PKR, DAP, MIC, UMNO, just want our votes – that’s all. They only return crumbs, like some minor funding for the schools or some land for the schools or some such token after the elections because they have to be seen to be doing something. They all reckon we are not significant enough to matter for more than that. That’s it they reckon we are not significant enough to matter for more than that.

We need a holistic approach to the Indian issues in the country. This is our demand. Then maybe we can consider other things, but bread and butter issues first. Look at the crime rates, the suicide rates, the alcoholism , the drug abuse situation, the unemployment rate, the limited opportunities for Indian businessmen and the drying up of educational and training opportunities in government institutes and public universities for Indians. The BN government and the PR governments are not taking us seriously enough to approach the problem in this holistic way. The 18 point memorandum of Hindraf clearly lays out what the Indians seek. They are not doing anything about the issues as we have raised them.

The only option we have now is to hit them where it will hurt. We must use our votes wisely to get them to reckon that we are significant enough in their political calculations.

As a test of this hypothesis we need to use our votes to make a difference for us in Bagan Pinang. Whatever the outcome in Bagan Pinang, it is not going to change anything significant. One more or less seat in the Negri DUN does not change anything for PR or BN. But it can help us make a point to whoever is interested in our vote that our votes come with a price.

There are 14192 voters. Let us assume an 80% turnout. That will make it 11,345 voters on voting day. Of this 66% are Malay voters –about 7500, 19.9% Indian voters –about 2270 voters, 10.5% Chinese voters – about 1135 voters. In the last election UMNO candidate got 6430 votes and won with a majority of 2,333 votes. In that election the PAS candidate won 39% of the votes or 4097 votes.This was at the height of the anti BN mood among the Indians and Chinese. That already stacks the cards against PR for this by-elections.

We must get all the Indian voters to abstain from voting this time in Bagan Pinang. Both BN and PR is no good for us up to now. Let PR suffer as a result of this. We will make a difference with our votes. If PR continues to ignore the significance of this point let them pay a price. If PR thinks it is important that they need the Indian votes, then show it in action and policy don’t just talk and make empty promises. We prefer you to UMNO, but only if you act and reflect it in your government policies. We can make you the difference – both ways.

We must make this point. This is our only way to make our point. This is our opportunity.
Subramaniam Bharathy

Polis membiarkan UMNO lakukan keganasan?

TELOK KEMANG, 9 Okt : Dalam keadaan mabuk, kumpulan pemuda samseng Umno ini melakukan sekatan jalan raya di Batu 4 dekat sini dan menahan beberapa buah kereta yang dilihat mempunyai lambang-lambang atau logo PAS sekaligus membelasah pemandu-pemandu terbabit sehingga cedera.

Lebih teruk, sebilangan mereka menceroboh masuk ke beberapa buah rumah kampung khususnya di Bagan Pinang dan melakukan tindakan yang sama ke atas penghuni rumah yang dipercayai penyokong PAS dan Pakatan Rakyat.

Ada kawasan tertentu yang tercetusnya kes yang sama, seorang tua diselamatkan oleh sekumpulan anggota tentera daripada terus menjadi sasaran samseng tidak berhati perut ini.

Dan lebih dasyat, kejadian sekumpulan samseng Umno membelasah dan menetak dengan parang seorang petugas PAS berlaku betul-betul di depan 'biji mata' dan 'batang hidung' Balai Polis Telok Kemang namun tidak diendahkan pasukan polis.

Demikian rentetan peristiwa yang menyaksikan seolah-olah wujud kerjasama dan modus operandi ini dibantu oleh pihak polis, kata Ahli Majlis Tertinggi KeADILan, Badrul Hisham Shaharin.

Beliau menyifatkan kelakuan samseng pemuda Umno pada 7 Oktober lalu memukul dan menyerang petugas Pakatan Rakyat hanya menjadikan Bagan Pinang kini bagai 'zon perang'.

"Saya hairan bagaimana ada kejadian yang berlaku di hadapan Balai Polis Telok Kemang tidak diendahkan pihak berkuasa polis.

"Ketika 'ketegangan' memuncak sekitar jam 3.00 pagi hingga 5,00 pagi, saya sendiri beberapa panggilan dibuat kepada pihak polis, namun setiap panggilan tidak berjawab," katanya kepada Harakahdaily di Markas Utama PAS Bagan Pinang.

Badrul juga turut menahan sebuah kereta peronda polis untuk meminta bantuan seorang anggota berpangkat kostabel namun polis terbabit memohon maaf kerana tidak dapat berbuat apa-apa dan meninggalkan beliau begitu sahaja.

Ada anggota polis yang menjawab panggilan kecemasan yang dibuat beliau tetapi memberitahu bahawa mereka merupkan anggota dan pasukan polis luar yang tidak tahu selok belok jalan dan kawasan untuk menangani kes terbabit, kata Badrul.

Beliau mendakwa, ada kemungkinan tindakan ini 'sengaja' dirancang hanya untuk memberi tekanan kepada petugas Pakatan Rakyat.

"Mereka yang diganggu termasuk petugas Pakatan Rakyat yang berusia.

"Saya tahu pemuda Umno ini mabuk dan mereka ini keluar dari Umno Command Centre, mereka buat 'road block' sendiri di Batu 4, mereka tahan siapa sahaja yang lalu yang pakai logo PAS," ujarnya.

Beliau turut mendakwa, salah seorang anak pemimpin tinggi Umno di Negeri Sembilan terbabit dengan keganasan ini.

Beliau menamakan anak pimpinan Umno yang terbabit itu sebagai 'Bob' yang dibayangkan seorang yang bertubuh besar dan berkulit cerah.

Tindakan samseng jentera Umno itu sebenarnya hanya menjadikan suasana pilihan raya kecil Dun Bagan Pinang yang pada awalnya tentera, kini seperti 'zon perang'.

Justeru beliau menggesa pihak berkuasa segera mengambil tindakan tegas kepada mereka yang membuat 'onar' iaitu Pemuda Umno.

"Jangan sampai mengasak atau meberi tekanan kepada Pemuda Pakatan Rakyat sampai ke dinding. Kesabaran kami ada hadnya," jelasnya tegas dan tidak menolak kemungkinan insiden ini akan berlaku dalam dua tiga hari lagi.

Sehingga kini, difahamkan terdapat 9 laporan polis telah dibuat berhubung tindakan ganas samseng Umno ini dan gambar-gambar mangsa belasah parang dan pedang samurai itu telah tersebar di papan-papan poster markas, internet, rakaman telefon dan diedarkan sebagai risalah.

Malah ada sms yang meminta Pemuda Pakatan Rakyat dan PAS untuk tingkatkan keselamatan dan siap siaga bagi mendepani sebarang kemungkinan yang tidak diingini beberapa hari menjelang hari pengundian Ahad ini.


We need a benevolent dictatorship


We need Pakatan Rakyat to be more dictatorial. But it should be a benevolent dictatorship, not a malevolent dictatorship like Barisan Nasional. While freedom and fundamental rights should be respected, anything that harms the coalition should not be tolerated. You breach the agreed terms of the coalition in any way and you die.


Raja Petra Kamarudin

There are things I like about Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad…well…some things, at least. And there are things I like about Umno…again…some things. No doubt, the things I don’t like certainly outweigh the things I like by far. But that does not mean we should close our eyes to the positive things just because there are more things we don’t like compared to the things that we like.

I always said there are times when we need a dictator to lead us. But then, what kind of dictator are we talking about? There are malevolent dictators and there are benevolent dictators. Malevolent is bad. Benevolent is good. So, while dictators are normally seen in a negative light, we can’t just discount all dictators as bad. We have good dictators and we have bad dictators.

I would take a benevolent dictator any time over someone who stands by and does nothing. More damage and injustice is done when someone takes no action. When there is racism and racial skirmishes resulting in the deaths of many innocent women and children, doing nothing is worse than clamping down with a heavy hand.

For example, when there is a natural disaster or catastrophe and looters start roaming the streets to loot abandoned homes and to rape women or kill men who resist, then a curfew needs to be imposed with a warning that looters who break the curfew will be shot on sight, especially if they are carrying weapons or property that they looted from homes and shops.

May 13, 1969, is a classic example. Because the authorities were too late in responding, many lives were lost before law and order was restored. It took days before the ‘shoot on sight all curfew breakers’ order was issued. By then, many Malaysians had lost their lives. If the government had acted immediately, the death toll would have been much less.

Democracy is fine. But there are times when democracy needs to be suspended and martial law needs to be imposed. And under martial law there is no such thing as arrest and trial. It is shoot first and ask questions later. If you are in the wrong place at the wrong time you die.

Dr Mahathir and Umno do not tolerate dissent. Anyone who speaks out against the party is brought down. Even if they stand up in Parliament to make a statement contrary to the party stand they are suspended or even sacked from the party. And Parliament is where they should be allowed to speak freely. But, with Barisan Nasional, free speech is not allowed. You speak freely and you die.

Pakatan Rakyat, however, is the reverse. It allows too much free speech. This is good at times because then Pakatan Rakyat is demonstrating that it is committed to democracy and freedom of speech. But there should be limits. The rakyat should be allowed free speech with no limits unless it borders on racism and religious intolerance. Even in democratic societies like the US and the UK they do not tolerate racism and religious intolerance although they allow naked women on page three of The Sun. But party leaders must speak on a common platform and uphold the party stand. They just can’t go against what has been agreed.

For example, it is the right of every Malaysian to contest any by-election or general election if he or she qualifies to do so. Anyone can contest an election unless you are disqualified from doing so for whatever reason -- like you are and un-discharged bankrupt or you can’t afford the deposit or you do not have a proposer and seconder who are registered voters in the constituency you wish to contest.

But, if you are a party member, in particular one of its leaders, then you can’t contest the election as an independent candidate if your party is already contesting that seat. Doing so would mean you are contesting against your own party. If you still wish to contest the seat as an independent candidate then you must first resign from the party. And if you refuse to resign then you must get thrown out immediately. No need for a show cause letter or commission of inquiry or whatnot. Bang! You are history.

And this is where Pakatan Rakyat should be more like Barisan Nasional. In previous general elections there were quite a number of three- or four-corner fights. Invariably, Barisan Nasional won the seat because of the split votes and some ‘independent’ candidates not only lost but some even lost their deposits as well. And of course the opposition suffered because of this.

But no action was taken against the renegade candidates. They were not sacked from their party. There were even occasions when the party defended these ‘independent’ candidates by saying that there was some ‘confusion’. There was no confusion. The party closed its eyes and acted as if no crime had been committed.

You may say that this is what democracy is all about so anyone is free to contest the election. This is not about democracy and fundamental rights. This is about going against your own party. More important, it is about going against the spirit of the coalition. And the culprit should have been hanged good and proper.

Then we have leaders who make statements contrary to the agreed policy of the coalition. The problem is there is no real coalition as such. So, while the statement may be opposed to what the coalition has agreed, what coalition are we talking about? The coalition does not exist. It is merely an understanding or an electoral pact. And that is not legally binding. And if the statement does not run contra to the individual party policy, although it may go against the so-called coalition policy, the party is unable to take action against the errant leader.

So we need a registered coalition that is legally binding. And all the party members of the coalition need to agree on a common policy. And the coalition’s policy must override the individual party’s policy. And any party member who breaches the agreed coalition policy should be kicked out.

PKR, DAP and PAS have already agreed that all policies must be based on unanimous agreement. This is, in fact, already in writing. So the agreement has been signed and it was signed just before the Kuala Terengganu by-election. Now that the ROS and EC have announced that you do not need seven political parties to register as a coalition, Pakatan Rakyat should immediately take steps to get the coalition registered as a legal entity.

Come the next by-election or general election, PKR, DAP and PAS should no longer contest as individual parties. We no longer want to see any PKR, DAP or PAS flags and banners during the election. We only want to see a common Pakatan Rakyat flag and banner. Never mind who the candidate is and from which party the candidate comes. He or she is a Pakatan Rakyat candidate, period.

We have been asking for this for ten years now since way back in 1999. But we were told this is not possible because you need seven parties to register a coalition and Pakatan Rakyat, and Barisan Alternatif before that, does not have seven parties. Now you do not need seven parties, according to the ROS and EC. So let’s get cracking without further delay.

And we need Pakatan Rakyat to be more dictatorial. But it should be a benevolent dictatorship, not a malevolent dictatorship like Barisan Nasional. While freedom and fundamental rights should be respected, anything that harms the coalition should not be tolerated. You breach the agreed terms of the coalition in any way and you die.

And the registered Pakatan Rakyat must come out with its own Election Manifesto. We want to see one Manifesto and not three separate Manifestos, and for sure not four Manifestos -- one for Pakatan Rakyat and one each for PKR, DAP and PAS. We don’t care what PKR, DAP and PAS want. Only what Pakatan Rakyat wants counts. And this will be how the coalition should conduct itself. And any party leader that goes against this dies.

Sure, you have certain rights and liberties. And you are free to do what you like. But if you wish to be independent then leave the party and become an independent. You can’t be both -- an independent and yet a party leader at the same time.

This does not mean you are not free to talk or to express your opinions. But there are platforms for that. You do all this at branch meetings, division meetings and general assemblies. You can disagree by all means at these various platforms, which are there for you to express yourself. Then a vote is taken. And once the majority has decided you have to follow the majority decision. And if you don’t like what the majority has decided then you leave. You can’t stay on and bitch and grumble. If you are not with the majority then get out.

And at the coalition level you do the same thing. There are various platforms for you to argue and debate. You state your case within the right platform. If what you say makes sense then the majority will agree with you. But if what you are saying is crap and the majority rejects your idea in favour of the opposite, then go with the majority or leave if you just can’t agree to what has been decided.

Yes, it is time Pakatan Rakyat not only registers as a legal entity but also crack the whip. We need discipline in the opposition. Sit down and agree on the policies. Bang tables if need be. But once a consensus has been reached and the three opposition parties have agreed on an unanimous decision, let no party leader try to torpedo all this by going off tangent. Rule ruthlessly, with a dictator’s hand, but a benevolent dictator at that.

Isa Samad victory will inspire change, says Hishammuddin

By Asrul Hadi Abdullah Sani - The Malaysian Insider

KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 9 – Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein believes that a win for Tan Sri Isa Samad, a man who was once found guilty by his own party for vote-buying, in Bagan Pinang on Sunday will inspire change in Umno.

The Umno vice president argued that Isa, who is hugely popular in the constituency for his largesse while he was Negri Sembilan Mentri Besar, had actually energised party members and machinery that had been hit by several straight polls losses since Election 2008.

“It will have an effect in the sense that the spirit of the machinery is very high and I feel that there will come a time, a tipping point, where you will see the realisation of our members that Umno has to change and will change and is in the process of changing.

"That spirit of transformation and process of transforming has inspired a lot of us to actually work harder and a win in Bagan Pinang is actually a great assistance,” he told reporters after the opening of the University Tun Abdul Razak campus building at Capital Square here.

Hishammuddin contended that an Isa win would not affect Barisan National’s (BN) credibility among Malaysians.

“I think at the end of the day we have already said that the credibility of the wakil rakyat is with the rakyat and if the rakyat feels that Tan Sri Isa is the candidate for them, then who are we to judge?” he said.

A poll by the independent Merdeka Center released yesterday showed a whopping 87 per cent of voters surveyed disagreeing with the choice of a candidate previously charged with vote buying.

The result of the survey suggests that a majority of Malaysian voters agree with the view put forward by former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad that Isa should not have been nominated as BN’s candidate for the Bagan Pinang vote.

The former PM has been a vocal critic of the nomination of the former Negri Sembilan mentri besar who was punished with a three-year suspension after the party’s disciplinary board found him guilty of vote buying during the Umno elections in 2004.

But Isa has proven to be a popular choice in Bagan Pinang, a BN stronghold where the ruling coalition can count on a large bank of postal votes from army personnel.

Hishammuddin said today that he was also surprised that PAS wanted that postal voting in Bagan Pinang to be stopped.

“I want to remind all parties that in every by-election, there are postal voters so why only now in Bagan Pinang is it being questioned? Why in other areas, where they have won the by-elections, the postal voters are not questioned?

"So this is clear that in the context of Bagan Pinang that when they see that the support of the masses is more towards us and this causes them to raise issues that were never raised before, like phantom voters,” he said.

PAS had demanded that postal voting in the Bagan Pinang by-election be stopped because they claim that the voter list being used was not the same as the one tendered on nomination day.

Hishammuddin pointed out that the election commission had already assured the public that postal voting was transparent and democratic.

“We are also worried for the voters if the process is not transparent. It cuts both ways,” he said.

The Bagan Pinang by-election was made necessary following the death of BN’s Azman Mohammad Noor on Sept 4.

It is situated within the Teluk Kemang parliamentary constituency represented by PKR’s Datuk Kamarul Baharin Abbas.

Apart from Bagan Pinang, Umno also won the neighbouring Linggi state seat in last year’s general election, while PR controls three other state seats in Teluk Kemang — Chuah (PKR), Lukut (DAP) and Port Dickson (PKR).

In March last year, Azman defeated Ramli Ismail of PAS, by some 2,000 votes.

BN is currently ruling the state with a simple majority after winning only 21 out of the 36 state constituencies.