Judging from the missing jet engines scandal to the latest “Allah” issue, it seems Najib’s administration may be short-lived – shorter than former PM Abdullah Badawi. You may not like Badawi’s administration because, well, there was no administration in the first place *grin* simply because the country was on auto-pilot while the pilot was dozing off most of the time. Of course Badawi managed to “steal” his first 4-year term with rosy promises otherwise he would have been booted out within a single term.
Najib’s mentor, former PM Mahathir, was quick to joke that the country would be in better shape since Najib Razak does not sleep on the job although he (Mahathir) is amazingly quiet on Najib’s most tainted allegation – the allegedly link to Mongolian Altantuya’s murder. Mahathir was however quite annoyed with the allegation that he has squandered about RM100 billion during his 22-year rule. Without denying Barry Wain’s claim, Mahathir pointed that Abdullah Badawi’s administration was worse – indicating his chosen successor has squandered more than what he did.
Nobody was surprised; instead it would be super strange if the current ruling government led by UMNO is not corrupt. That’s how serious the corruption this country has plunges into. Corruption has been part of the culture in the society, thanks to Mahathir Mohamad, and there’s no sign showing it’s slowing down. As a matter of fact, the corruption is heading for the worst due to the Mar 2008 general election factor. Najib’s administration is actually at the crossroad. The next general election may see the first defeat of the current government which has been ruling since independence. So what shall the government of the day do?
It’s looting time dude, well, literally. It would be stupid if the current ministers, warlords and whatnot do not start filling their pockets knowing the voters have suddenly become intelligent overnight. On the other hand, the situation can be salvaged if the ruling government manages to swing back some percentage of protest votes. It’s still not game over yet, at least that is what Najib’s party UMNO is trying to convince one another till today. But the ruling government only knows one method in the nation’s administration – the corrupt way. The criterias of good governance are too alien to the ruling government.
However, PM Najib Razak should be given the credit for trying to change the anti-government sentiment. He visited China hoping to replicate his father’s success in winning the Chinese hearts. He deliberately chose to visit Tamil Nadu hoping to swing the Indian votes since 85% of them have their roots to the state. Brilliant, he may just hit the bull-eye and the protest votes would return come the next general election. But he did something super silly when he endorsed the so-called mass demonstration in protest against a court decision allowing the Catholic weekly Herald to use “Allah” as God’s name. His cousin, Home Minister Hishamuddin, has earlier agreed to the demonstration.
Every Tom, Dick and his dog instantly suspected the churches’ fire attack thereafter was the work of UMNO, nevermind that Najib had denied it repeatedly. The reason was simple, as the theory goes. It was to start another incident similar to 13th May 1969 unrest (if both Christians and Muslims started to retaliate against each other) and hopefully would bring the Malay-ethnic votes back to UMNO with the consolation prize; direct emergency rule over the state of Selangor which is under the opposition rule. Better still, it would be fun to see how opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim’s jaw drops when the supposedly caught arson suspects mysteriously admit that they did it under the instruction of Anwar (who else).
Besides sloganeering and copied his father’s pattern in visiting China and later India to push up the supports from Chinese-ethnic and Indian-ethnic, Najib is also toying with the idea of building iconic or mega projects in order to re-brand his tainted image. Already there is plan to build a 100-storey (or higher) tower on a 25-ha site near the proposed Matrade Center in Kuala Lumpur – higher than the current highest 88-storey Petronas Twin Tower. Most importantly mega projects are required in order for leakages to happen and this is precisely why the most developed state Selangor need to be captured, evil plan or not. But Najib’s plot was not perfect though, if it was indeed the plan of UMNO in the first place.
Najib’s administration has dearly under-estimate the power and influence of internet and blogs. Unlike his father’s period in 1969, the world is now borderless and information travels faster than Najib could say “1Malaysia”. Except for a handful of UMNO supporters, opposition leaders were fast in asking their supporters to stay away from the demonstrations and thereafter the visits to the attacked churches resulting in calms. Heck, the oppositions even deployed their own “troops” in safeguarding the churches – something unimaginable if today is in the year 1969.
Najib has to get one thing right. The reality is while it was a perfect plan to get Chinese-ethnic and Malay-ethnic against each other back in 1969, the same obsolete plan cannot be applied today. Today it is the Malay-ethnic, Chinese-ethnic and Indian-ethnic who are working together against UMNO-ethnic. Racism is outdated and cannot be used anymore. If UMNO still thinks its’ split-and-conquer policy is still relevant then they’re indeed obsolete. There’s however another hidden force that Najib’s administration may not be aware of *ahem*.
One may wonder why the highly sensitive information about Northrop F-5E jet engines reportedly stolen from a military base could be leaked out to the public in the first place. It was embarrassing to the PM Najib as the incident happened during the period he was the Defence Minister. Interestingly countries that subject to U.S. arms embargoes such as Iran, Sudan and Venezuela have F-5 fighters that uses the engines reportedly missing under the nose of PM Najib Razak. It seems the dark force has access to top secret papers only accessible to the Defence Ministry.
If your old memory serve you right, before Najib took over the premiership he switched his Defence Minister portfolio with former PM Abdullah Badawi’s Finance Minister. The question is did Abdullah Badawi seize the opportunity in digging some documents (how hard could it be?) as collateral to ensure his son-in-law Khairy Jamaludin’s survivability in the government post-Badawi’s exit? It would be super stupid not to hold Najib’s balls ready to squeeze them knowing well the anti-Khairy sentiment exist not only within Najib’s circle but also the old man Mahathir Mohamad. Could there be plan to route out Khairy which prompted the missing jets scandal (and more to come?) to be revealed? Also, one has to remember that it was Najib who forced Abdullah Badawi to resign so there are bad bloods all along.
If I were Najib, I would go back to the drawing board with genuine plans on how to fight corruption, attract foreign investments, prevent brain-drain, appoint only capable ministers, promotes racial harmony and whatever it takes to start a good government. But then maybe UMNO is beyond repair so why waste time on them.
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