Fellow citizens, in the last general election, we gave the Barisan Nasional a landslide victory. As I recall, the nation was overjoyed that Badawi had such great support from the people, a fresh Prime Minister and a new era for Malaysian politics.
Sadly, and over time, we were all greatly disappointed. For starters, it seemed that the level of confidence we had given the government, worked to our disadvantage. In the past couple of years, we have seen Hishamuddin, draw his Kris and waving it around in the name of Malay pride and power. We have also seen Badawi's son in law Khairi Jamaluddin, protesting in front of the Kuala Lumpur Convention Centre, directing the anger of a mob of youngsters at the US Secretary of State Rice. Khairi, also has threatened the Chinese community on numerous occassions. And now, we have an Information Minister, Zainuddin Maidin who seeing the increasing trend of political bloggers such as myself, deems it to be a threat to the nation and hence wants to "curb" "the phenomenon".
So what does all this spell for us? The very people who gave Barisan the make or break vote. Nothing but absolute disappointment. We now have people in power who think they are invincible and they can go about saying whatever it is that they like, be it seditious or anything that rouses the emotions of the other races. Strangely, I believe that if it were a chinese or indian person who said the same things Khairi said or even did what Hishamuddin did, they would definately be behind bars, and I am quite certain that the Malay response would have been a lot harsher - which would have likely been tolerated by the government. Yet, these people still roam free and say and do as they please, enjoying the power and priviledge that we provide them.
They are quite happy continuing as they are, just as Najib has responded to the slide in Chinese votes in Ijok... "Najib said it was usual for support from this group to slightly increase or decline during by-elections and that this could have been related to local issues, adding that young voters there had been more critical than usual"... really? is it as simple as that? This is how you respond to Ong Ka Ting's valuable fact?
I think its time this is brought to a stop, and if you agree, perhaps we should take it to the ballot box in the coming election. Vote for the opposition. There will be enough votes to bring Barisan back, but we shouldn't give them a full mandate to run the country. By lending votes to the opposition, perhaps parties like Keadilan will gain some credibility and build a stronger party, hopefully one day there will be enough strength within that party making it really worthwhile voting for.
What our country is missing is a decent opposition party. It's time we learn to give ourself a choice for the benefit of the future generations. We cannot rely on Barisan anymore. It's obvious which party dominates the coalition, and now, some of them are becoming as extreme as their counterparts in PAS. Examples are clear as day, with regards to the religious department and the mockery they are making of our country and people, and our "moderate government" tolerates this?
Have a read of this article extracted from The Star (http://www.thestar.com.my/). It's a clarion call, hear it and hear it well fellow Supreme Council and Leadership of UMNO, because many of us will vote for the opposition just to put you where you belong. Change your methods and your attitude and perhaps you will regain our confidence.
Factors that swayed Chinese vote
PETALING JAYA: The swing of some Chinese votes to the opposition in the recent Ijok by-election was due to unhappiness with the service of the previous assemblyman as well as several sensitive national issues, MCA president Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting said.
He said the Chinese voters in the constituency had complained that they were unhappy with the service rendered by the Barisan Nasional."During campaigning, they (Chinese voters in Ijok) asked us why we were doing this and that now (during the election) and not earlier. There were also some rumblings on national issues," he said after attending a Wesak Day celebration at the Kwan Inn Teng Temple here.Elaborating on what he meant by "rumblings on national issues", Ong said some voters had expressed unhappiness over statements made by "some leaders" which they considered hurtful."We got this feedback although we had explained that the implementation of policies is based on collective decision-making with a multiracial perspective and not on certain statements by individuals."However, they did not accept our explanation," he said without elaborating on the statements.
Giving the party analysis on the Chinese voting pattern in the Ijok by-election for the first time, Ong said there was no doubt that "to a certain extent the Chinese votes in the area had swung to the opposition".He said that in Ijok town, for example, the BN won by a majority of only 21 votes."In Kampung Ijok, next to Ijok town, we lost 116 votes. I think that in certain areas, the swing was not big. Overall, the BN still obtained the Chinese vote, particularly in the new villages but the question now is by how many per cent because some of the ballot boxes had votes from mixed areas."In southern and northern Batang Berjuntai — two predominantly Chinese areas — the BN managed to secure about 500 Chinese votes.Ong said that the MCA, being a party that represents the Chinese community and the second largest BN component, did not deny that there was increased Chinese support for the opposition compared with the previous election."We will work hard and go down to the ground to get their feedback.
"There is a sign of some swing in Chinese votes from the BN to the opposition. This is something we cannot deny."Compared with the 2004 general election, there is some change of mood. To what extent, we can’t draw the percentage yet." Asked whether the party’s internal problems had played a role in the reduced Chinese support for the BN, Ong said: "I don’t think that was a big factor."In the by-election, K. Parthiban of the BN beat Tan Sri Abdul Khalid Ibrahim of Parti Keadilan Rakyat by a majority of 1,850 votes.However, despite the better performance by the BN compared with the 2004 general election (when BN received a 1,649-vote majority), Chinese support for BN had reportedly dropped by about 10 per cent. — Bernama