There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics – Benjamin Disraeli
If there is anything that Covid-19 has taught us, it is that despite the more than 30,000 Malaysians dead and counting, the destruction of our routine lives, the lust for power and riches of our ruling politicians become ever more intense.
Recent events in Sabah, Malacca as well the fall of the Perikatan Nasional and wobbly rise of the Barisan Nasional government have one common thread which is to grab power at all costs.
The dysfunctional Pakatan Harapan opposition is no better, if not worse at times.
Yet for all of the politicking, there remains a leader who chooses the rakyat first and foremost every time.
Few would have predicted that Mukhriz Mahathir would be treated persona non grata by Umno and Bersatu to suffer the arbitrary sackings throughout his two-decade political career thus far.
Being the only son of Dr Mahathir Mohamad in politics, the expectation was a fast track to the top.
Still, despite it all, now and again he fights for the grassroots voters who are mostly rewarded with oppression to satisfy the greed of their powerful leaders.
Mukhriz has had to rebuild a new political party from the ashes of betrayal within the constraints of a once-in-a-century epidemic.
Without carrying out membership drives or organising much physical political campaigns, Pejuang has made a decent start, recording over 80,000 members.
The party has opted out of the Malacca state elections when no other political party did despite knowing the Covid-19 surge post-Sabah state elections.
If evidence is required of Pejuang’s sincerity to the struggle of the rakyat, its absolute rejection to participate in anything that draws focus and resources away from the epidemic suppression is proof of the pudding.
Mukhriz maintains a low public profile instead of courting daily media blitz, preferring instead to serve without razzmatazz.
Mukhriz is the conscience of the nation in the post-Mahathir era. Perhaps this is why despite Pejuang being a newly minted political player, there is a concerted effort to tarnish Mukhriz’s reputation.
Ask yourselves: why do they fear Mukhriz who has no position in this or the last government?
The answer to that question lies in the 15th general elections and beyond.
The next GE could be unique in Malaysia’s history with many political parties/coalitions in the mix.
Mukhriz’s opponents hope that by tarnishing his reputation, 222 parliamentary seats will be safer for them.
In other words, by slandering Mukhriz with lies and half-truths, what they are really saying is that the president of Pejuang is Malaysia’s political dark horse who could potentially lead a fresh coalition unsoiled by scandals, inspiring a new generation of voters.
There is anticipation among Mukhriz’s supporters that a complete alternative to BN, PN and PH will be unveiled in due course.
WRITER – Imran Imtiaz Shah Yacob
THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT