The Myth of 916 and One Last Racist Drama from BN

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Sep 09 2008
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Oops! It happens again. Malaysia stock operator, Bursa Malaysia Berhad (KLSE: BURSA, stock-code 1818), has suspended derivative trading for the rest of the morning session yesterday due to unresolved technical problem. Although the so-called glitch did not affect trading in equities and bonds the fact that such problem happened within a short span time since the last “hard-disk” failure (slightly more than two months ago on July 3) does not bodes well for Bursa.

But I guess nobody cares even if the whole stock exchange is not functioning from now onwards to the D-Day of Sept 16 or popularly known 916. The number 916 might offer 4-D or 3-D gamblers another new number to bet but if you’re a gold investor who have good collection of gold (jewelry), 916 is also the number that you’re fond of. Gold in 100% purity means it’s in liquid form and you can’t wear it silly. The quality of gold which is particularly popular in Asian countries is 916 gold (also known as 22-carat gold) – 91.6% pure gold with the rest consists of copper or/and silver metals.

The number 916

The countdown to 916 was made popular ever since newly appointed opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim blew his trumpet that the Sept 16 will be the day he topples the current government. Sept 16 is also the day Malaya, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore agreed to join and formed the Malaysian federation in 1963. It might not carry much weight to the Peninsular Malaysia (Malaya then) but to then Sabahan and Sarawakian, 916 is the true Independence Day instead of Aug 31 celebrated currently. And if you do not know, 916 is also Singapore’s first Prime Minister, Lee Kuan Yew’s favorite date because it’s his birthday?

The first good news especially to employees if Anwar Ibrahim could indeed form the new government in another 7 days is an additional public holiday – Sept 16, as mooted by the opposition leader. No matter how much the ruling government rubbished the 916 as a political gimmick by Anwar, one cannot denies its’ possibility. If you care to sit and listen to coffee-shop talks from now till 916, you’ll hear of nothing but the much-awaited day. Foreign investors are not pouring their money in big-way into the stock market partly because of 916. In fact most investors secretly hope that 916 would become reality because they preferred Anwar than Badawi for obvious reason. Abdullah Badawi’s infamous flip-flop in decision-making created uncertainties which makes many investors perplex. According to Bank Negara’s latest statistics, some US$1.1bn (about RM3.8bn) of foreign funds exited from the country during the period Aug 15-29.

916 – A Myth that send Government into chaos?

To say the ruling government is in denial mode is an under-statement; it’s more like in panic mode. It’s silly to plays racial cards again hoping to create “confusion” and “agitation” between ethnic Malay and non-Malay. It’s doubly stupid trying to lock potential defectors away by sending 49 naughty birds to Taiwan to learn and explore Taiwan’s agricultural and industrial technology. Gosh! Do you need to send one-third of the ruling government’s MP to learn agriculture? What a laughing stock. The statement by BBC (Barisan Nasional Backbenchers Sun Tzu Art of warClub) chairman Tiong King Sing that they couldn’t go to China as they were short of time to process visas confirmed the desperation to meet the deadline (of sending the 49 MPs away) of 916. So, if 916 is just a myth as claimed by ruling government, why the rush as if the country is about to be hit by plague?

Get real, the ruling government is not stupid and with its Special Branch spies everywhere under opposition’s armpits, they could smell the 916 miles away. The story of defectors could be real but the 916 could be the biggest red herring ever used in the history of Malaysia’s politic. Years in the prison allowed Anwar to do lots of reading and the Sun Tzu’s Art of War could have transformed him into a wiser and better tactical politician. The PM and deputy PM have been visiting Sabah and Sarawak dozens of time, each trip with packages of goodies and promises hoping the leaders from the two states with a combination of 54 parliament seats will stupidly (are they still?) cling to the necks of the PM and deputy PM. But Anwar knew he couldn’t get all these 54 seats and even if he could he simply can’t proceed with the plan because Malaysia is still a very much ethnic-based country, politically. If the ruling government were to spread the racial propaganda that the Anwar’s newly formed government is controlled by non-Malay, it could just ignite the spark.

One last racial game before 916?

The ruling government is the master of racial card and nobody can beat them on this game. So here’s the theory. Somehow the small-fry Bukit Bendera Umno division chief Ahmad Ismail made a racists statement during the recent Permatang Pauh by-election campaign that the Chinese in Malaysia were immigrants or “squatters”, right under the nose of deputy PM, Najib Razak. MCA and Gerakan, two component parties within the ruling government sprang into action and criticised the racial remark but Ahmad went into hiding in order to let the PM and deputy PM to play their roles. The proud deputy PM who seldom apologise what more to the Chinese community made a surprising apology on behalf of UMNO. But the poor written script didn’t stop there.

Ahmad Ismail racists remarkThe flip-flop PM entered the show; first backed the racists Ahmad by saying the latter did not mean it but later agreed with Najib’s apology. To add more spices, Ahmad’s character will not dies so soon. He was supposed to be the hard-to-die actor and refuse to apologise even though under PM’s instruction. PM had a coffee meeting with Ahmad and in a 360-degree U-turn the PM somehow agreed with Ahmad and even put the blame on the Chinese media for twisting Ahmad’s racial statement. Ahmad was supposed to receive the support from all 13 UMNO divisions in Penang and asked the school-boy Gerakan’s Koh Tsu Koon and other Chinese leaders to apologise instead for being “immature.” Sounds familiar so far?

That’s because the “drama” was retrieved from the ruling government’s “Standard User Manual” that was used over 50-years and it never fails to impress me. The fact is the spineless leaders from MCA, Gerakan, MIC will never leave BN (Barisan Nasional) no matter how they are being kicked around. They are not being called UMNO’s dog for no apparent reason. Heck, even the Jedi Master of Racial, Mahathir, played the same tune when he wrote in his blog supported the racists remark by Ahmad Ismail.

Who’s the UMNO biggest traitor(s) or frog(s)?

Everyone emerges hero – MCA and Gerakan leaders will be perceived (are they?) as heroes for fighting for the ethnic-Chinese while UMNO will still maintains it’s status as Big-Brother (taikor) who would defend the ethnic-Malay rights and will not think twice about asking the Chinese to go fly kite. PM and deputy PM will be seen as neutral in this latest episode of racial game. However this badly written script also will see the PM as weak and unable to control even a small-fry within UMNO. The question is – will the ethnic-Chinese and ethnic-Malay who were responsible in delivering the votes to kick the ruling government’s arses out from the five states are mature enough to understand this plot? The answer is it doesn’t matter because if Anwar’s plan to form the new government on 916 materializes, UMNO, MCA and Gerakan (of course MIC inclusive) leaders will be nowhere to be seen leaving the low-ranking officers like headless chicken running directionless.

916 Red HerringForget about the keen defectors from Sabah and Sarawak because they’re not supposed to lead the defection. Someone from UMNO needs to lead the migration and rumors have it that it could be warlord Muhyddin Yassin. But this Muhyddin guy knows better than anybody that he needs plan-B just in case Anwar plays him out (of deputy PM post) or 916 goes down the drain. His plan-B was to persuade former premier Mahathir back to UMNO (yeah, the old fox quit the party recently) and this time Mahathir is backing Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah to become the next President of UMNO in December after the former premier was disappointed with Najib who chose to stick with Badawi. Either way Muhyddin hopes to become the deputy PM. But wait! Won’t December a little bit too late if Anwar’s plan is real? Hmm, maybe 916 was a red herring after all. It was a diversion that managed to fool almost everyone. Since this might be the last racists drama from the ruling government everybody should give them a round of applause *clap clap*.

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Dear FinanceTwitter,

Hey, I was thinking along similar lines. 916 could just be a stratagem to misdirect one’s attention from what’s really going on.

Perhaps this is an application of the ‘Openly repair the gallery roads, but sneak through the passage of Chencang 暗渡陳倉 (Àn dù chén cāng’ stratagem?

hello avatar,

i believe so and i bet anwar knew about the passage of putrajaya (chencang) 🙂

let’s wait and see, shall we?


Yes, these are interesting (though turbulent) times indeed.

To the victor, goes the spoils


Re: Derivatives down, but Equities trading OK?

Derivatives run on different software from that of Equities. Derivatives trading has gone down a number of times this past year. But no one really cares about it, except the traders.

The scary thing is that Bursa is trying very hard to put Equities trading on the same software as Derivatives.

You can look forward to a few more CIOs being fired.

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