Written by Stan Lee, Politics Now!
KUALA LUMPUR (Politics Now!) – In the latest doublespeak enraging and mocked by Malaysians, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim has vowed to fix the ‘dysfunctional political thinking’ that he claims has wrecked the country. Yet after only a year in power, he himself is being condemned for the very same sort of non-logical mindset.
“Anwar is now like the proverbial bull charging in a china shop. Like when critics express disgust over moves to get opposition MPs to switch loyalty by withholding what should be their rightful funding from the federal government, Anwar shouts backs why didn’t Muhyiddin Yassin give equal allocations when he was PM,” an analyst told Politics Now!
“Now if this isn’t dysfunctional political thinking, I don’t know what is. I believe Anwar was voted in as a reformist leader to break these sort of vicious political patterns. But he is now practicing it full throttle. Instead of putting the country into a virtuous cycle, he is actually practicing the politics of revenge and putting Malaysia into a worsening negative cycle. Just because Muhyiddin and past Umno regimes did it, he thinks he too can do it. So it’s for Malaysians to ask if he is the leader they want. They must also think if this sort weak logic perpetuated by Anwar continues, the new PM that replaces him might do the same and shout, Anwar did this to us and so it’s okay for us to do this back to them. Can Malaysia ever get out of this rut and prosper?”
POLITICS OF REVENGE, NOT REFORMS
The analyst was not alone in his view that Anwar has lost the plot. His underperformance can no longer be denied. even by die-hard long-time supporters, while the Cabinet he personally chose and has stubbornly refused to revamp despite public clamoring has also failed to deliver.
“What is happening now is not the government that was portrayed by Anwar,” said Hisomuddin Bakar, the executive director of research outfit Ilham Centre.
“The treatment of media portals with unfavourable coverage to the government is given pressure. We were involved in civil movements. If you look at the statements from the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas) and Bersih, they all go against their early support for Anwar.”
Hisomuddin, a former activist, expressed deep disappointment with Anwar. Apart from the clamp down on critics and media freedom, he pinpointed the government’s lack of a clear path to lead the nation towards positive change.
One example was Anwar’s failure to draw a line of separation between the powers of the attorney-general and the public prosecutor, an issue Anwar and his Pakatan Harapan coalition had harped on and fought for.
Another was the announcement that a secretariat headed by Umno’s Asyraf Wajdi Dusuki would be formed to coordinate the different manifesto charters of the various parties forming Anwar’s unity government – so that promises could be kept to voters without the parties stepping on each other’s toes. Yet, nothing concrete has followed Anwar’s much-publicized announcement.
“It’s not like what I imagined in my youth. The expectations for change shared by the entire nation did not materialize. What is happening now is not the government that was portrayed by Anwar,” said Hisomuddin.
“There is no hope relying on the government that Anwar once proclaimed. It’s as if those who support it don’t see a way out. The person sought after is now in the number one position. But, we don’t see a way out and who can lead Malaysia towards a better future.”
While Hisomuddin was praised for his courage in speaking out, not a small feat given how the Anwar regime has used the multiple enforcement agencies including the police, the MACC, the MCMC and the AGC to muzzle the minds of the citizenry and keep critics at bay.
5-YEAR HONEYMOON? NO WAY, REPLACEMENTS ALREADY WAITING IN THE WINGS
However, other analysts believe other “good replacements” were already waiting in the wings and watching closely.
“Timing is the name of the game in politics. If rivals act too quickly, the people may feel Anwar was not given enough chance. But now they see through him as well as DAP, PKR and Amanah and they can accept that perhaps they were wrong to think these guys were supermen. You also have the ringgit crashing to 25-year-lows and that is a real catalyst for change. Unfortunately Anwar and Pakatan are like pretending it’s not important. So I think the public won’t mind if Anwar is ousted anytime from now as they have given him one year and they can see, no matter how much time they give him, he cannot do the job. A five-year honeymoon is out of the question, not when Malaysia is near economic crisis.”
“And it’s also not true there are no capable leaders to succeed Anwar. After all Anwar gave a fake image of himself, so there’s no need to compare with a holograph that doesn’t exist. All Malaysia needs is someone hardworking, honest, fair and kind to all races – and wise enough to realize that equal opportunity must be given to all skin colors so that the economy can fire off on all cylinders. Not just just depend on petroleum and natural gas revenue. Then only can Malaysia become prosperous and stable. That’s all. No need to strut like a peacock and talk hot gas on the international stage while your own country languishes.”
“And for that, guys like Khairy Jamaluddin, Hishammuddin Hussein can do it. The thing is have they been watching the people’s response to Muhyiddin and Ismail Sabri’s Malay-centric but also hugely underperforming regimes. And how failing to put in the reforms that the people had hoped Anwar and Pakatan would is also a no-no. If they don’t learn from the lessons of these guys on how to fail as PM, especially the modules on hypocrisy from Anwar, then they too will fail.”
Written by Stan Lee, Politics Now!