Despite the outward show of confidence, the fact is that the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has not yet called general elections because he is not confident that UMNO/Barisan Nasional will be re-elected as the Federal Government despite the mountain of fake news and false information which UMNO/BN had spread about Pakatan Harapan.
The stakes for Najib are unbearably high, for if he loses the general election, he will not only lose the Prime Ministership, the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB kleptocratic money-laundering scandal which had been swept under the carpet will be exposed to intense national and international scrutiny, with all the attendant consequences.
Today Najib has come to northern Johore, for he knows that Johor, which had been a fixed deposit state for the ruling coalition over half a century until the 13th General Election, will be a critical state to determine whether he could be returned to Putrajaya as Prime Minister in the next general election.
If Najib had called for national election after the Sarawak state general election in April 2016, or after the two Sungai Besar and Kuala Kangsar parliamentary by-elections in June 2016, or even last year, the chances of Najib winning the 14th General Election would have been quite high
But Najib has missed the opportunity in his procrastination in calling for general elections in 2016 or 2017.
Najib is hoping that the gerrymandering from the redelineation of electoral constituencies would provide him with a sure formula for UMNO/BN to be returned to Putrajaya, even with a two-thirds parliamentary majority which UMNO/BN had lost in the last two general elections in 2008 and 2013.
But if there is a political tsunami, not only in the urban areas but also in the rural and Felda areas, then the redelineation of constituencies is not going to save Najib.
Najib is presenting a very bold front of being very optimistic about the next general elections, to camouflage the quaking he is feeling about the uncertain prospects for him and UMNO/BN in the next general election.
In Muar today, Najib talked about the need for a party that was strong on its own and not relying on parties that depended on other parties.
Was Najib referring to the other Barisan Nasional component parties, like MCA, MIC ad Gerakan?
In the Pakatan Harapan, all the four component parties of DAP, PKR, AMANAH and PPBM have their own respective strengths, and it is from the unity and solidarity of the four parties in Pakatan Harapan that we hope to create history by evicting the UMNO/BN coalition from Putrajaya for the first time in 61 years in Malaysia.
It is very different however from the other Barisan Nasional component parties.
For instance, all the three most important leaders of MCA depend on UMNO’s votes to get elected as MP and then to become a Minister, raising the question whether MCA is representing the Chinese in Barisan Nasional or whether they are representing UMNO to the Malaysian Chinese?
In Bentong, the parliamentary constituency of the MCA President and Transport Minister, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, the single biggest ethnic bloc of voters are the 46.1% Malay voters, as Chinese voters represent 42.4%, Indians 9.0% and Others 2.5%.
In Ayer Hitam, the parliamentary constituency of MCA Deputy President and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong, the largest ethnic group of voters are the 57.6% Malay voters, with the Chinese 38.3%; Indians 3.9% and Others 0.2%.
In Tanjong Malim, the parliamentary constituency of the MCA Secretary-General and Second Minister for Trade and Industry, Datuk Ong Ka Chuan, the largest ethnic group of voters are again the Malays 55.4% with Chinese 25.8%, Indians 13.2% and Orang Asli 5.6%.
In fact, in Malay voters represent the largest ethnic group in
six of the seven parliamentary constituencies won by MCA in the 13th General Election.
As MCA fits the bill of Najib’s attack in Muar, can the Prime Minister explain why he is assaulting the MCA?
In his speech in Muar, Najib called for the people to support UNNO/BN to support a progressive Malaysia.
Ifi Najib is genuine in wanting a progressive Malaysia, then let him do two things immediately:
(i) Ensure that PKR Vice President and MP for Pandan Rafizi Ramli is not jailed or disqualified as a Member of Parliament for doing a national service for exposing the RM250 million National Feedlot Corportion (NFC) scandal; and
(ii) Cleanse Malaysia of the international obloquy of being a global kleptocracy in the past three years, and clean up the Augean stable of corruption affecting Felda, MARA, Tabung Haji and other government outfits.
Najib has achieved what five former Prime Ministers in more than half a century had failed to do – made the stratospheric ascent to become known as a global kleptocracy, with all the infamy and ignominy of the appellation.
This is very sad, as yesterday was the birthday anniversary of Bapa Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman who, like Datuk Onn, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein, Tun Mahathir and I believe Tun Abdullah, would never have conceived that Malaysia would suffer the shame and humiliation of being regarded worldwide as a global kleptocracy.
Furthermore, never before in Malaysian history have so many people’s representatives whether Members of Parliament or State Assembly members been harassed and hounded, including being selectively prosecuted in the courts under the variety of repressive and undemocratic laws to take away their liberties as well as to remove them from the legislative chambers in the land.
Even 93-year-old Tun Siti Hasmah, wife of former premier Tun Mahathir, was not spared.
I fully agree with Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim that the sentencing of Rafizi Ramli to 30 months’ jail for blowing the whistle on the NFC scandal shows the country needs to change its leadership, as the present nation-building trajectory can only lead to a regressive, repressive, a failed and rogue state and not a progressive, prosperous and united Malaysia.